Sunday, May 19, 2013

Unselfish resolutions...

Bruce Lee was said to have committed this mission statement to paper at a particularly low point in his life. He was broke and he had a family to support, but he was unable to break through in Hollywood due to his race.

Within three years of writing this though he was indeed a superstar when he starred in his breakout movie "Enter the Dragon". Unfortunately, Lee died before his star reached its ascendancy.

I've read a lot of articles about mission statements and resolutions. Typically, people always commit to a goal that they think will benefit them or improve their lot in life. However, often there's an attitude of entitlement or selfishness behind them. What's missing is any sense of contributing or giving back to life in return.

Bruce Lee's  mission statement was unique. It wasn't all about him. Instead he framed it terms of give and take -- he would give the best of himself in exchange for the wealth and fame that he hoped to achieve.

My gut feeling is that the resolutions that have the best chance of succeeding are those in which we do it not for ourselves, but for the benefit of others. As I learned from my own martial arts experience, it's harder to give up on others than to give up on yourself. 

For example, instead of this which is typical of most resolutions:

"I resolve to lose twenty-five pounds by summer so that I can look and feel fabulous in my bikini at the beach."

... maybe this would be better:

"I resolve to lose twenty-five pounds by summer. I want to inspire others in a similar situation to achieve the same."

Letters of Note: My Definite Chief Aim

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