My family and I recently decided to spend seven months in New England. For a man born and raised in Southern California, the change couldn’t be more drastic.
We live by the beach, and although the sun is out and the views along the shore are incredible, the weather is in the low 40’s. For me, this is cold. Bone-chilling cold.
As much as I want to blame the weather for my desire to stay inside where it’s warm and cozy, I see people of all ages out walking and running, enjoying the beauty around us. They aren’t making excuses. They are living.
I put on an extra layer and head out – my son doesn’t understand “it’s too cold” or “it’s raining.” To him, it’s now and now is a time to play outside.
He doesn’t accept excuses. They just don’t exist in his world yet. He also doesn’t explain his actions. He’s only been in the world for 18 months. Things are the way they are. That’s it.
Watching him navigate the world reminds me of a quote Benjamin Disraeli said: “Never complain, never explain.”
If you’re reading this, you have access to a computer and access to the Internet. You are doing well. You and I really have nothing to complain about and if we do complain, who cares? It doesn’t change anything when we complain. Nor, when we explain our actions and reasons for doing, or not doing, thing.
The complaining is merely a momentary state of victimhood. We’re blaming things outside of ourselves and essentially saying “it’s not our fault.”
What if we do what Jaco Williams suggestions in his book Extreme Ownership and take ownership of everything around us? What would that world look like?
Instead of complaining, we get to maintain the power over ourselves and take action.
Instead of explaining why we did, or did not, do something, we instead took action and showed those around us, and ourselves, who we are by what we do?
How would living this way change our lives? Who would be in the driver seat?
The next time you have the urge to complain, I invite you to take a pause, count to 4, and then take ownership over what you were just about to complain about. Take back your power.
As I write this, it’s 70 degrees in my home and 27 degrees outside. On my calendar, it says “workout” in 15 minutes.
I can complain about the weather.
I can explain that it’s too cold to go outside and workout.
Or, I can do what I told myself I was going to do.
I have options. What do you think I’m going to do?
The buck stops here.
How can you apply this to your day today?
Perhaps, instead of complaining about your employees, your spouse, or the weather, you take extreme ownership and let your actions do all the talking.
Be. Do. Have.