How you do anything is how you do everything.
-Chelsea Dinsmore, Live Your Legend, speech at World Domination Summit 2016
A simple phrase but super eye-opening.
Is it true?
How I do anything?? That means how I act when I’m bored. When I’m doing a monotonous task. When I want to be anywhere but here. When I’m in a bad mood. When I’m in the best of places or the lowest of lows.
Oooh. If it’s true…then the way, the manner, the attitude in which I approach these little irritations and seeming insignificant moments of life…reveal how I also will be in everything else, big or small, pleasant or otherwise.
But I don’t live like this is true. When in a still moment that leaves me longing for something more exciting, I tell myself that I feel down or bored because I’m waiting for the big moment to come and change everything.
It’s the dangerous “if only” cycle… “If only I had —–, then I would happy/content/joyful/relaxed/free…”
But if the phrase is true- “how I do anything is how I do everything…” then this means that even once I get where I’ve always wanted to be…once I reach that dream…once my “if only” happens…once I’m at that place I knew would make me happy…
My response will be the same as it was in the little stuff, the irritations,the daily …
Because the way I see it, the “anything” moments happen all around us all the time…revealing who we are…and the “everything” moments are those ones we live for, hope for, dream about…and unrealistically expect to change us- to somehow reveal a better “us” that’s deep inside waiting to come out.
When perhaps the more honest truth is that the small, insignificant, “anything” moments shape and reveal who we are, giving us a chance to daily refine in little ways who we are and how we will choose to respond to life.
And when those big “everything” moments come…what we bring to the table has been largely set in stone and shaped by our past daily choices.
It’s just not accurate to say that I can live life one way for years on end, and then expect that those deep qualities within myself will suddenly alter when circumstances change.
Life doesn’t shape who we are; it reveals who we are.
But the good news is, once we see our true colors, we have a choice- always, always a choice. To stay that way, furtively hoping and counting on the elusive future day when all will be changed.
Or – to look ourselves squarely in the eye, warts and all…and to determine that perhaps we haven’t been approaching the daily moments as we would like…and that we are not the people we wish ourselves to be. And instead of moping about it (or straight up denying it all completely)…to get up and do something. To accept that I do have a choice and I do have power. That I am not merely affected and oppressed by life’s happenings, hands tied, a poor helpless victim.
No, I am not in control. I cannot control the daily circumstances – big or small- but I can control me.
Because “how you do anything is how you will do everything.”
Don’t know about you, but I want to do everything with purpose, freedom, joy, courage, and love. And that starts here and now in the little moments.
What about you?