Significance

Related:

Level of impact (LOI). Commitment.

I am committed of being significant by doing the most significant work I can.

Is it really worth doing?

Developers like Eduard Metzger, Alfons Schmidt, and [Aytekin Tank] (https://medium.com/@aytekintank) helped me realize the true meaning of significance.

When helping yourself creates a greater benefit to others, you are living a life of greater significance.

They've developed amazing great tools I've come to depend on for my business. The work these developers put into their products produce a greater benefit to all of us collectively (the users) than themselves (the creators).

They are examples of people who have created a result of greater significance than themselves.

This I believe is the key for all of us to find in life. It's called leverage.

Eduard & Alfons exemplify the type of individuals I have gratitude for (and aspire to become).

A list from David Seah, originator of the Printable CEO system:

On a more tactical level, David's list holds true. But from a higher more strategic level, we can consider the significance ratio.

The Significance Ratio (SR)

What's the SR of your work? 2:1 ? 10:1 ? 100:1 ?

A 1:1 SR means that the work you are doing really only benefits yourself.

A 2:1 SR means you are doing work that benefits someone else in addition to yourself.

A 10:1 SR indicates your contribution is benefiting 10 others.

Is there an ideal ratio? I would argue not. The more people your work benefits, the better. Ideally, it's an ever expanding number.

The more subscribers, customers, etc - the larger you ratio is.

Everything else can wait. Focus on what moves your mission forward.

Our magnificence is rooted in the significance of our actions.

It's only when I am doing something significant that I feel alive. Life is too short to be spent doing insignificant work. When all else is met, there's no cap to the level of significance one can play in one's life. Look at super achievers like Edison,

Therefore, the most important question to ask yourself right now is:

Is what I'm doing significant? Or... How is ____ impacting my ability to do something more significant?

I ask:
What would me today significant? More meaningful moments with those I love.

What would make today more significant for me? Progress on my mission.

You need to stay a bit uncomfortable to stay relevant. ~ Larry Page

Outcomes

Significant outcomes that benefit something greater than yourself.

Character

Character is not developed through the easy times in our life. Rather, it's built through the times of struggle and suffering. Embrace the setbacks in your life, it's in overcoming the setbacks that we build strength. In the end, it's the setbacks that set us free.

Setbacks will happen. The more you put yourself out there, the more they will! Setbacks are evidence you are a living experiment. Life is really just one big experiment anyway. Nobody expects the experiment to go well, that’s why it’s called an experiment! The truth is that setbacks, obstacles, and massive failures are often the catalyst for something greater. It’s the pain we have been avoiding that reveals our next purpose. It’s meaningful to overcome hardship and then help others avoid the same. Success, therefore, is not how well we avoid setbacks, but rather what we do when they occur.

Why not me, why not now?
If not now, when?
What are you waiting for?
The time is now. Tomorrow will be too late. Live today!

There’s no sense saving it. Live is meant to be spent, not saved.
Every moment is spent, time can’t be saved - only spent.
Our time is much shorter than we realize.
As we get closer to the end, we notice more.
Meditation allows me to take a closer look at all of it.


Insignificant

"I'm not worthy."

The fear of being insignificant is one of the biggest sources of stress, anxiety, depression, and a host of other related mental events. Defined as “not big or valuable enough to be considered important”.

It's that sense of insignificance that is at the core of feeling alone, unliked, unsuccessful, and often the root of low self-esteem or self-worth.

When we compare ourselves to others, we can quickly fall into this trap.

Many people spend their entire lives trying to prove themselves as significant to the world. As a middle child with 3 brothers, I feel we all work hard to stay significant to our parents. After all, who doesn't want to be the favorite child? It drives us to work hard in school and in our jobs. In fact, I would say that perhaps unknowingly - our teachers and employers us the significance card as a prime motivator to get more from us.

The more money you have, the more significant you must be.

This is a hard wired belief in our culture. Those who have accumulated great wealth must be more important, right?

If you drive a Tesla, you must be someone very important.

Are you a willing participant in the game?

I have to smile when I step back and see this whole charade from a distance. People work their butts off, justify all their actions, curtail kindness, and justify their actions in the name of persuing the almighty signifcant card.

One time this really hit me when a friend said "You people have jobs, we have careers." In fact, I am never sure our friendship ever recovered because what it really did was expose how different our values are. Here's a snippet of that email.


Many people find their careers change considerably (or even disappear) from when they began. Or they go to school for what they thought they'd want to do only to discover otherwise. Or they may get booted from a career all together. Or life events force them to abandon or start over their career journey. I personally discovered back in 2008 that I had invested too much of my own self-worth into my career, and left it on my own terms.

The real difference between a job and a career is your attitude.


My parents at 75 couldn't have more distinct views of the game. My dad has reached the top 1% in his career. He's won by his standards. But he's failed to acknowledge that a large part of why he won was because of the support of my mother. While he was working on building a career, she was raising 4 boys. And even today, the family feels more like a 'support crew' to the drive that he has to continue pursuing the best in everything he does.

I'm not saying that there's anything wrong with his view. It's one shared by millions and I see the high self-confidence that results by playing according to the unspoken rules of society and playing for the varsity team. After all, who wouldn't want to fly first class to Paris?

But what I would say is that not everyone shares this view. Not all of us are willing to make the same sacrifices. Some of us value kindness more than currency. In fact, in the end, my opinion is that kindness is the only currency that matters. Yes, money can create experiences, but quality time for myself and with friends is what matters most to me.

What I do believe is that no matter who we are, we are fighting demons of some sort. The demons of insignificance are ever present.

What I would proclaim is that we each show up authentically. If striving for the top is important to you, then go forth and pursue that rank in society. But don't judge others for their own authenticity to go a different path. Perhaps you are proud of the sacrifices you've made - but don't get on others for their unwillingness to make sacrifices for things they don't care for.

What I have clarity about is that my drive is to help others. I usually often put others before myself (it's part of the reason I'm good spouse!).

Is your agenda driven by the need to gain acceptance? Gain recongition?

Again, I'm not saying there's anything wrong with you if it's what you find most meaningful.

But it's not what drives all of us, and there isn't room for two.

In fact, many of our affluent friends live with a competitive tension I'll never know.

Pay attention to whether you are doing something to gain recognition or because we spend so much time doing things to receive approval and stay relevant that we never actually get to BE ourselves.

Seeking the approval of one group will often cost you with another because you can't please everyone. The more you try, the less authentic and trust worthy you become (like most politicians) Just pick the group that matters most to you and bid adieu to the rest.

In the end, commit to what matters most to you and don't allows others to guilt you into becoming someone your not.

I've come to peace with my friend I mentioned earlier. Where she is is the result of a taking a different path, one where her circumstances were entirely different than mine. I fully honor that both paths are equally significant, just no longer the same.

When I say "may our paths cross again" I really mean, may your journey lead to your heart's desire, and mine to mine. If and when our paths ever cross, I shall be excited to hear about your journey.

Never let the opinions of others define your decisions.

You are not defined by your accomplishments, but rather defined by your character. The most important quest is to know thyself. To discover what is most meaningful, who is truly important to you and how oyu can live to your greatest potential.

Who we are today is defined by our charcter. Much of our charters was defined by circumstances beyond our control in childhood. Our birth order, the friends we made, where we lived, and the beliefs we were born into.

All I ask is that you question whether or not those beliefs are still serving you. Is the role you are playing consistent with the character whose playing it?

Sometimes the role needs to change, but often the character needs to adapt to the role they have been cast.

Is it the role that defines the character or the character that defines the role? It's a matter of the right character being placed in the right role.

It's far easier to change the role than it is to change the character in that role. Directors know this.

What a good director does is let the character define the role. A good actor brings themself into the role, and as a result - great acting is less about acting and more about being authentic.

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