GrasshopperNotes.com - Thoughts for inspired living


September 7, 2015

Competing with the Past

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 7:24 am

SeeDrunkms to me that competing with the past is not a clear cut or winning strategy.

It’s not clear cut because our vision of the past is opaque – clouded by forgetfulness of what really happened combined with the rose colored glasses we choose to remember it through.

Attempting to create something better than an airbrushed past will leave us with an unsatisfying present and a future filled with past mistakes.

We are attempting to compete with a fantasy that our current skills can never match. We can never match or top our memory of the way it was because it was never really that way to begin with.

Good old days remembrances are quite fun for a class reunion, just like dressing up on Halloween as someone who you’re not is fun for a night. After that, it’s pure drama that won’t stand up to the scrutiny of the morning light.

“I want to be better than I used to be” is a noble goal. But you’re apt to make more progress if you change your mission to: “I want to be better than I am now.”

Now doesn’t suffer from distorted memories; it only has the data present that’s here now. I’m reminded of the words of NFL, Hall of Fame, football coach Bill Parcells who responded to the following statement with his legendary present day reminder.

Player who just lost a football game: “We’re a better team than this.”

Parcells: “You are what your record says you are.”

“Where am I now?” is the best assessment we can make to move us forward. Going back has us competing with a mythical legend that we have muddied memories of. That strategy keeps us mired in the muck – translation: Stuck.

“Here’s where I am and here’s where I want to go” is an attitude that will get you there quicker – more so than the game plan of a person at a bar, late on a Tuesday night, remembering how great they were through the filter of liquor.

All the best,

John



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