How you do anything is how you do everything

“How you do anything is how you do everything.”

This mantra has become front and center in my world of late. It is a reminder for me that there is no cheating the process. There is no way around “doing the work.”

This is most tangible for me in my physical fitness though it is applicable in my personal and professional life. When my alarm goes off at 5:30 in the morning, my instinct is to hit the snooze button. To start my day procrastinating.

“How you do anything is how you do everything, Mike”

The little voice in my head reminds me. With that, I curse that little voice and begrudgingly put my feet on the floor. I’m out the door for my run before 6am. This morning is a hard one—a progression run. My coach has prescribed paces at the upper end of my ability that I know I will not likely hit.

Ramp up in 10 steps
1.00 km @ 06:15 min/km
1.00 km @ 06:01 min/km
1.00 km @ 05:45 min/km
1.00 km @ 05:33 min/km
1.00 km @ 05:23 min/km
1.00 km @ 05:09 min/km
1.00 km @ 05:00 min/km
1.00 km @ 04:46 min/km
1.00 km @ 04:33 min/km
1.00 km @ 04:21 min/km

It would be easy to “phone it in” and simply go through the motions to check off the run and move on.

“How you do anything is how you do everything.”

Do the fucking work Mike. The first 7km are relatively easy. It is the last three that make me literally want to vomit. I’m out here now. Let’s get it done, and the rewards will come on race day when I am that much better prepared.

I think of Courtney Dauwalters blistering pace and new course record over 100 miles at last weekend’s Western States Endurance Run. I think of my friend Priscilla who placed 8th at WSER. What would they do for those last three clicks? The effort expended here will have a direct correlation to how I do come race day, just 10 days away.

“How you do anything is how you do everything!”

Habits are not just about what I do but also about how I do them.

I want to build a habit of pushing hard when the going gets tough. A habit is not something I do once in a while but rather what I consistently do.

Cultivating a habit of perseverance in the face of adversity is why I run ultras. To practice. My ability to persevere in the face of adversity has gotten me through so much in my life.

A near-death car accident at 17
A 240 million dollar Ponzi scheme that nearly bankrupted me and many I love
My divorce
The murder of my girlfriend

And a myriad of other trials and tribulations over the years.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.”

How will you persevere today?

What is your influence?

On September 1, 2022, my 21-year-old son left to go to University 5000km from home. As a father, I am incredibly proud to see him spread his wings and blaze his own trail. It is also a little sad and a lot scary for me as well. When he left, I wanted to give him something that would memorialize this time in his life and serve as a reminder that I will always be there for him. No matter how far he explores, he will always have a home to return to.  I bought him this compass as that symbol and had it engraved with “Stay True, Love Dad”. I gave him a handwritten letter explaining the significance of the compass. I explained that a compass represents safety and protection. I reminded him to stay true to who is and the values he has been instilled with. I wrote about the power of leaning on your values to guide you when navigating stormy weather. I shared the guiding question that a friend shared with me. It is one that I regularly use in my quest to become. 

“What would the man I want to be, do in this situation?” 

I reminded him that life will get difficult; there is no getting around that; however, in my experience, almost everything beautiful is on the other side of something shitty.

As he sets sail on his adventure, I am proud to see many of my values reflected in the man he has become. I am reminded of the importance of modelling the way for others. I am reminded that our words and actions influence the world around us.

The question then becomes, what do we want our influence to be and how do we become intentional about that influence? 

So as you set out on your journey this week, I challenge you to reflect on the values that guide you and to become intentional about the kind of influence you want to have on this world.

Are You Having a Midlife Crisis?

Is it really a midlife crisis?

Many men spend most of their lives trying to live the life they believe they are supposed to live. They are supposed to be the provider, the protector, the ‘man’. Most do this at a great cost to self. They suppress their own needs, wants and desires in order to be that version of self they feel like society wants them to be.

At some point this becomes problematic and requires adjustment. However, most of the time when men start to make that adjustment it gets labelled a midlife crisis. They start to experiment with what makes them fulfilled and sometimes that can be challenging. The real crisis is a society that demands men hide who they really are in order to fit some societal narrative of what a real man can be. Love to hear your thoughts. Drop me a note in the comments below.

Men’s Mental Health: Be Somebody’s Larry

When it comes to men’s mental health we all need somewhere to unpack what is going on in our lives. The challenge often can be that finding those spaces to do that is difficult. As men, we tend to like to “fix” things. This often kills the space required for exploration of feelings and patterns of thought. In this short video I share a beautiful story about finding that space to unpack.

Men’s Mental Health Week

Learning to Embrace the Suck

The difference between a good race and a bad race is all about how you manage the (inevitable) pain.

Chris McCormack

I first came across the term “Embrace the Suck” in the context of Ironman Triathlon. My daughter gave me a henna tattoo that made that proclamation across my forearm when I competed in my first long-distance triathlon. I had no idea how important this phrase would come to be in my life. It has become a daily reminder to me to lean into adversity when it inevitably shows up.

We can carefully script our lives as best we can to try and avoid the “suck” but the reality is that life often has other plans. That hot August day in Penticton, reading those words tattooed on my forearm while I was cursing my life choices, helped set me up to navigate unimaginable adversity 3 short years later. I thought those last 10km of that iron-distance triathlon might be the most challenging thing I would ever face.

I was so, so wrong.

Embrace The Suck

Wakefield Brewster: Da Lyrical Pitbull

Since January 1999, Wakefield Brewster has been known as one of Canada’s most popular and prolific Performance Poets.

He is a BlackMan born and raised in Toronto, by parents hailing from the island of Beautiful Barbados, and he has resided in Calgary since 2006.

Wakefield Brewster

has spoken across Canada, several States, and makes countless appearances on a regular basis in a variety of ways, for a myriad of reasons, throughout each and every single year. This 30 minute set was produced for a youth event I hosted. You can find more on Wakefield at his website

Four Ways To Get Unstuck: Avoiding the How-to Trap

Audio Blog

Yesterday I was speaking to someone who is a top performer in her industry. I mean not just “successful” but the top 1% of the industry. It has been very gratifying to watch her success over the years. You see she actually started her career with me some 15 years ago. I have been incredibly fortunate to mentor and surround myself with amazingly talented people in my career. As a guy that is always looking to learn and grow I tend to be very curious and ask a lot of questions of these folks. 

The HOW-TO Trap

I know we’ve all heard the adage of “If you want to be successful at something, find someone who is already there and do what they do.” 

This is a trap. This is well intentioned, bad advice. 

It is an easy trap to fall into and I catch myself repeatedly there as well. 

It was no surprise when I was chatting with this individual I asked her the question “What is it that you do that has contributed to your success?” I was seeking the “How-to”. Also not surprisingly she couldn’t really answer the question. She thought for a minute and said “You know, I am not really sure. I don’t think I do anything magical.” She went on to say that she always gets asked this question and has never really had a decent answer for it. 

We unpacked it a little bit and I reflected on a story from early in my career where I was keen to take the above noted, well intended, bad advice. Larry, who we’d both worked with in the past, was consistently the top sales pro in the company year after year after year. I was fortunate because he lived in the same city as me and was also a very generous man. I was excited by the prospect of learning from a peak performer. I asked Larry if I could shadow him for a day, intent to learn all the mystical secrets that he possessed that allowed him to do what he did so well. Larry agreed and said that he would be thrilled to have me accompany him for a day. 

When the day came, I felt like a kid on Christmas morning. I was so jacked to be able to spend a whole day with him. I was honestly a little surprised when I went and sat with him at his office.  There really wasn’t anything super discernable about how he did business. I mean, don’t get me wrong, he was efficient and focused on getting through task after task but the whole thing was rather mundane. 

Eventually we took a break for lunch and I asked him the big question. “What is it that you do that sets you apart? What is it that has you consistently at the top of the leaderboard no matter the economic environment?”

This conversation happened over 20 years ago but I still recall it vividly. I can assure you that his answer will stay with me for the rest of my life. He didn’t hum and haw,  suggesting he wasn’t sure what it was. Instead he said with confidence and certainty 

“You know Mike, I just do what I tell people I am going to do. That’s it” 

Boom! For me that was definitely a Mic drop moment. So simple yet so profound. Here I was expecting to find some magic marketing formula or secret scripts or sales techniques yet there it was. So perfect in its simplicity. 

What Larry did that set him apart was to consistently (and this is a keyword) deliver on what he told people he was going to do. We continued to discuss this over lunch and he elaborated. “If I tell someone that I am going to call them at 3pm tomorrow with an update, I call them at 3pm with an update. I don’t call them at 5pm with an apology and excuse for being late.”

This also hit home with me as I reflected on how many times I had missed the mark on my promises with some form of excuse. “I know I told you I’d call yesterday but the market has been crazy busy.” or maybe playing on empathy “Sorry I didn’t call yesterday but it was my daughters birthday and I just got a little behind.”

These may well be “justifiable” reasons (ahem excuses) for not delivering, however that is not what mattered. This was a massive “ah-hah!” moment for me. 

As human beings we tend to want the quick fix. The magic formula. The secret pill that will give us all the riches and wealth that our heart desires. The secret celebrity diet that helped Gwenneth Paltrow lose all her belly fat. 

Yet the reality is that it is consistent application of little habits that are what will become the magic formula. I’m sure it took Larry some time to get into the upper echelon of sales professionals, but once he did he stayed there because he had developed the habit of delivering on his promises. Every. Single. Time. 

There is a reason list based articles are so popular. There is a reason marketers implore us writers to use click bait style headlines with the list of “x Number of Things That Will Change Your Life!” We are always looking for those 5 simple things to make us a better leader, salesperson, human being, fill-in-the-blank. We want the articles, videos or programs that will give us that quick fix. We love titles like…

  • 5 Proven Ways to Lose Belly Fat
  • 8 Strategies to be a Better Leader
  • 7 Steps to a Brand New You
  • 4 Tips to Grow Your Business in 2022
  • 4 Ways to Get Unstuck

As you can see I even used the list format in hopes of getting you to click in and read this piece. While I really dislike playing the How-to game it is what people search for. My hope is that we can start to change that. 

We are addicted to the “How to” and as a result we often fail as we miss the forest for the trees. What really needs to happen is we need to focus more on the “Who to” rather than the “How to” if we want to make lasting change in our life. Rather than focusing on the list of things that need to be done to achieve what we want to achieve, shift your focus to figuring out what kind of person we need to become to achieve those things. 

For Larry it was clear. He was the type of person who always delivered on his promises. That is “who” he is more so than “what he did”. Unfortunately while the answer is simple, like many simple things it is not easy to execute on. It takes time and discipline. There is no substitute for that. There is no “X number of steps” list that will shortcut the need to become the person you need to be in order to do the things you want to do.

How To Get Unstuck

Being vs. Doing

In my book “Becoming a Better Man: When Something’s Gotta Change, Maybe It’s You!” I talk about the shift from doing to being. This is one of my favorite quotes from the book.

Life can take away what you have but it can never take away who you are. So focus on becoming more rather than having more.”

Mike Cameron

So often we feel stuck because we are busy trying to DO what others DO. When we try and emulate someone else we are almost guaranteed to fall short. Each and everyone of us is unique. Embrace your uniqueness and look to amplify WHO you are rather than WHAT you do. 

Create Powerful Questions

In conversations with my friend and leadership expert Drew Dudley, he ended up sharing his the one question he most often asks himself. It is one that I employ almost daily. The question is simple yet super powerful. 

“What would the man I want to be do in this situation”

If I want to be the kind of man that keeps his promises then I am going to find a way to phone that client back at 3pm like I promised regardless of the situation.   

Stop Searching, Start Experimenting

When I was in my 20’s I devoured every little bit of self help advice out there. While it is often said that knowledge is power, the truth is that oftentimes knowledge can be a crutch. It can be a distraction, an excuse in and of itself. It’s not knowledge that is power, but rather the application of that knowledge that is power. It is also true that what works for one may or may not work for others. 

Start experimenting with different ways of being and see how that works for you. Start with the mental shift to stop searching for how and start searching for who. Don’t do what the experts would do, instead do what you would do if you were the kind of person who… insert objective here. 

Far too often we chase the “How-to” round and round and round. We get frustrated because no matter what solutions we find, no matter how many tactical tips we learn we still don’t seem to get the results we are looking for. It is usually more about getting in our own way than a lack of information. Until we start looking at who we are, no additional information will move the needle in the slightest.  

Focus on the Feeling

How-to is about behavior. The primary focus of my work is examining how our emotions influence our decisions. Emotion is the foundation upon which reason is built. In other words, we make decisions based on emotion. Our decisions drive our behavior and our behavior drives our results. 

If we try to implement any sort of “How-to” without first addressing the underlying feelings that may be preventing us from consistently executing what we need to do then we are destined to fail. Most of us already know the “How” but rarely have the courage to take the time to examine the “Who”.

There was a skit on MadTV that talked about weight loss. The magic formula. Eat Less, Move More. Most of us know how to lose weight, get in shape, make those sales calls, yet there is something about who we are that is preventing us from consistently executing on these steps.


When I circle back to that top performer I discussed in the opening sentence, I am reminded of the crux of this message. It really has very little to do with what she does that makes her a top performer. In fact it has everything to do with who she is that makes her a top performer. 

My hope is that I gave you some food for thought. My hope is that as you continue to search for the how-to you will season it with a whole lot of “who to” along the way. As always I love to hear from you so drop me a note in the comments. I reply to all comments. 

Time Confetti

Is Time Confetti Ruining Your Life?

Audio Blog

Focus seems to be an incredibly rare commodity these days. It is something I have struggled with most of my life. Do you remember the scene in the movie Up! In the scene, Dug the Dog introduces himself to the main characters and halfway through he stops, mid sentence, looks sharply to his left and says “Squirrel!” then brings his focus back to the conversation at hand. 

That scene resonated strongly for so many that all you have to do is yell “Squirrel!” and people will immediately get the reference. It speaks to our collective tendency to succumb to distraction.

Time Confetti

In her 2014 book, “Overwhelmed: Work, Love, And Play When No One Has The Time” Brigitte Schulte coined the term “Time Confetti” to describe what she found to be the shredding of what should be plenty of time, into small, unenjoyable chunks. After a time-use researcher suggested to her that like every other American she had 30 hours a week of ‘leisure time’ she was skeptical. He challenged her to keep a journal of her leisure time which led her to discover vast amounts of what she describes as “Time Confetti”.

For me when I think of Time Confetti and the damage that it does in my life, I think of the amount of times that I switch tasks during my work day. Ultimately I often end up feeling like I spent all day being incredibly busy but surprisingly unproductive. What I realized years ago (yet still struggle to implement) was that when I am at my best I am working in short, focused blocks of time. 

Rarely did I truly lack the time to get things done, but often I lacked the focus to get things done. In order for any of us to be truly productive we require focused attention and effort. While we tend to applaud people’s ability to “multitask” what we really need to learn to do is to “monotask”. We need to learn to actually focus on one thing at a time. This is true whether we are talking about specific home or work projects or we are talking about personal relationships. 

How often have you been on the phone with someone sharing a story only to realize that they are not actually listening. Their focus is clearly elsewhere. Maybe they are in the middle of writing an email or simply thinking about the next task that they have to do. How does that make you feel? Right?! It’s annoying as fuck. Yet we all are guilty of it from time to time. 

My partner Michelle and I were discussing the concept of time confetti this morning and she laughed when I first mentioned it. She explained that she had just used the word confetti to describe strings of her work emails. When working in a team environment, how often do you receive separate emails on a single topic from multiple people? 

All potentially valuable information yet somehow incredibly fragmented. Everyone contributes their own relevant bits however, if there isn’t an easy way to tie them all together we end up with a giant box of unassembled puzzle pieces. All the pieces are there, yet all the individual team members are left to assemble them on their own. This has the potential to prevent any one person from actually seeing the whole picture. Or worse everyone seeing the picture differently. 

So how do we manage “Time Confetti” in our life? 

It Always Starts With Awareness

I’ve said it a thousand times and I will say it a thousand times more. It always starts with awareness. We can’t manage what we don’t see. With awareness comes choice. If you prefer a more philosophical lens the philosopher Gurdjieff says 

“You are in prison. If you wish to get out of prison, the first thing you must do is realize that you are in prison. If you think you are free, you can’t escape.”

George Gurdjieff

In other words if you don’t know you are in prison, escape is impossible. For many of us we are loath to admit it but we are addicted to the confetti. These small bursts of dopamine hits that give us temporary satisfaction as we jump from thing to thing to thing. Sometimes it is easier just to pretend that the problem does not exist and carry on complaining about our lack of time.

“What I really need Mike is more time in the day” 

I hear this so often yet when we get down to really examining where time is spent it is rarely true that we actually need more time in the day. For most of the clients I coach they simply need to be more efficient with the time that they have and focus on the priorities. That means reverse engineering the confetti and putting it back together into an entire sheet of paper. 

There are a few tactical ways you can do this. You could create a scorecard and tally all the times in a day you get drawn off task. If you are the kind of person that carries around a notebook, use one of the back pages and write down the date and simply add a tick mark beside or under that date every time you catch yourself getting pulled off task. 

November 26, 2021: IIIII IIIII IIIII IIIII 

Yep, it’s been a lot for me and it’s only 9:30am. This is why I need to use some of the techniques below to maximize my opportunities to stay on task and be the most productive version of myself possible. 

Track where you actually spend your time. I’ve written about this before but using a time tracking app such as Toggl or something similar can be very helpful. Simply start the timer when you begin working on a task or project and stop it the moment you stop working on that task or project. If you are anything like me you will likely find that in an 8 hour work day you can only account for half the time. I found that much of my time was not directly attributed to specific projects or tasks. 

That means that the rest of that time has been shredded into those tiny little flakes of confetti. This presents us with a huge opportunity to actually create more time in the day. That dream that so many of us have. 


As I discussed above, it can be fun and gratifying to switch tasks a hundred times a day. That means that it really all starts with discipline. It will take discipline to sit down and track where you actually spend your time and how often you get pulled off task.

It will take discipline to not allow yourself to get sucked into that industrial size, micro cut, time shredder. I love visualizations so one of the things I do when I catch myself getting pulled off task is to picture a giant vortex sucking my time away from me and funneling into one of these giant shredders. The next time you find yourself saying “If only I had more time” try replacing that with “If only I had a little more discipline” and see how that feels. 

Time Blocking

For me this has been the most powerful shift in how I approach my day. It started when I wrote my book. The thought of writing an entire book over a long period of time was overwhelming. I came across a method that many are likely familiar with but I would suggest few actually employ with any consistency. 

The method is called the Pomodoro technique. Initially by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980’s. It uses a timer to break work into shorter intervals. Traditionally 25 minute blocks followed by a 5 minute break. Lather, rinse, repeat. 

I do almost all of my work in “Poms” now. It’s similar to how I run ultramarathons. If I think about having to run 100 miles all in one go the task seems overwhelming and largely impossible. However when I break that run down into running from one aid station to the next it becomes much more doable. I can always run the 8-10 miles required to get me to the next aid station. 

Email Management

Emails have become so ubiquitous that it is easy to allow them to shred our time into a million little pieces. When I started to recognize the number of times I was checking email, looking for something to respond to, it became very clear that this was a huge source of Time Confetti for me. 

With awareness comes choice. 

I created an autoresponder that replies to every email letting the sender know that I check emails at noon and then again at 4pm. I also give them my cellular number so that if they really need to get ahold of me urgently they can simply text me. Now I just have to be disciplined enough not to look at my emails until those time slots. 

The reality is that there is rarely an email that cannot wait at least four hours. Immediately my productivity went through the roof. I stopped responding to other people’s “demands” and could then focus on my priorities. I could do this in a much more efficient manner and I am certain that none of my clients felt that they were any less of a priority for me because of it. That was the lie that I had been telling myself. 

I told myself that in order to be exceptional I needed to be ‘responsive’. I told myself that would be one of my differentiators. The truth is that responding in four hours is still incredibly ‘responsive’ when you compare to the rest of the business world. It can still be a differentiator for me.

It just means that I have to be disciplined about sitting down and providing thoughtful responses at the right time. For things that will require larger amounts of time to respond to I will schedule a “Pom” or two or three in my calendar. I will reply to the email immediately at noon or four and set expectations on the timing for a thorough response.


By now you should know that I am a big fan of ‘sound bites’. Little digestible descriptors that I can easily hang onto and reference throughout my day. It is a large part of what I practice sharing with you. When I heard the term “Time Confetti” I knew that it would stick for me. 

I’ve shared with you some of the tools that I use to minimize the Time Confetti as much as possible. My challenge for you today is to start with some of the awareness practices. Start to document your confetti. See if you can identify how much “Time Confetti” is impacting your life and your productivity. 

I’d also love to hear some of the strategies that you use in order to manage the amount of time shredding that happens in your life. Drop a note in the comments below.

How to set boundaries

How to Set Boundaries

How to set boundaries audio

In my work I talk a lot about leading with empathy and compassion. I talk about the value of kindness, acceptance and love in leadership. These words can be mistaken for “soft” or “weak” and therefore some are hesitant to employ those qualities in a leadership role. This is only the case if we do not learn how to set boundaries.

There is a truth that took me a little longer to learn than perhaps it should have. 

Empathy and compassion without boundaries and accountability are a recipe for disaster. 

They are not mutually exclusive. Far too often I see good, talented, even gifted individuals not live up to their potential because they lack the ability to set boundaries. They confuse being a good, kind person with having no boundaries. 

The truth of the matter is that you can be both someone who is kind, caring, and compassionate as well as have firm boundaries as to what is acceptable in your life. The cold, hard truth of the matter is that if you have one without the other you are ripe to be taken advantage of. Abused even. 

This holds true for all of our relationships. Personal as well as professional. Setting boundaries is a skill that takes practice, repetition and effort to master. Once you start to learn the art of articulating what is acceptable to you, and that which is not, life/business becomes so much better. There is a profound freedom in learning to assert your boundaries. 

What are boundaries

Boundaries are a set of guidelines. A list of what is acceptable in your life and what is not. Boundaries aren’t beholden to right or wrong, they are simply about identifying what you will allow in your life. Don’t get me wrong, I think it is reasonable to consistently challenge your boundaries and ensure that they continue to match the values which you strive to live by. 

Walls vs. Boundaries

This is an important distinction. There are many times when we seek to improve ourselves we can implement practices that are counterproductive. In the context of boundaries it is very easy to mistake putting up walls for setting boundaries. 

Walls keep people out. They are protectionist in nature and usually stem from fear. They create disconnection and can lead to loneliness and isolation. As human beings we are hardwired for connection. When we create disconnection by putting up walls we risk that disconnection becoming a much larger mental and emotional well being issue. We may put up walls in order to protect but ultimately those walls can become our downfall. 

We don’t have to do life alone. We don’t have to keep people out. We don’t have to be the lone wolf (yes men I am looking at us). We need to have the courage to value ourselves enough to make sure that we are clear and firm in our boundaries. 

Boundaries simply let people in relationship with us know the rules of engagement. When we are able to clearly articulate what those are, then the people in our lives can choose to abide by them or not. If they choose not to respect our boundaries then at some point we need to make the decision to limit the amount of opportunity that we allow them to break those boundaries. Why don’t we set boundaries?

Why Don’t We Set Boundaries?

  • A fear of losing love and belonging
  • It takes effort (especially if you haven’t before)
  • We lack self worth
  • We don’t want to appear selfish

How to set Boundaries

Identify what your boundaries are

As with everything in life, with awareness comes choice. If we do not know what is acceptable in our life then we really will not be able to articulate what is not acceptable. Often times we know when something just doesn’t feel right. However, it is easy to gloss over these feelings and ignore those items that really are not acceptable in our life. Over time these things will add up and ultimately start to do damage. 

Listen to your gut. If you are a list kind of person, create a list of things that are not acceptable that you are currently allowing in your life.

Are there patterns starting to emerge? 

I suspect there will be patterns that you can begin to recognize. In the beginning you may want to simply focus on finding the patterns without trying to change them. It can be overwhelming trying to do it all at once. Simply start to notice the patterns. Let them become clear first, then you can start to do the work to change.

It will be difficult

If you’ve had a hard time expressing and asserting your boundaries for most of your life then you need to understand a few things. The first is that it is not going to be easy to change old patterns of behaviour and you will need to give yourself some grace as you start to make the shift. 

One of my favorite expressions is “When I am at my best…” 

When I am at my best I am living my values and standing firm in my boundaries.

For me this subtle shift in language is powerful. First it is a reminder that these are the things I do when I am living my best life. Secondly it allows me to acknowledge that I do not always get it right. There is no way I am “at my best” 100% of the time. I don’t expect that to be the case and allows me the latitude to have a little bit of self compassion when I am not operating “at my best”. 

Those that have been in your life the longest will push back the hardest. If you have not been good in the past of setting boundaries then people have come to expect a certain way of being from you. So when you start to alter that and start asserting those boundaries, the ones you love the most will likely be the ones to make it the most difficult to do. It is uncomfortable for them, they may not be able to see the harm that the lack of boundaries has caused you in the past. Or worse, they may not care because it was more convenient for them when you were not setting those clear and concise rules of engagement. 

Consistency is key

As I mentioned earlier there will be times when you fail. There will be times when you drop the ball and let people cross those boundaries. That is perfectly OK, just gently re-establish them and be consistent. 

Do not engage in the drama. When you start setting boundaries you will get challenged. You will get questioned and you will likely feel like you need to justify your position. 

You don’t. You simply need to decide what is acceptable in your life and what is not. It honestly doesn’t matter if you are right or wrong, all that matters is what you are willing to tolerate in your life.

Make the decision

Do you ever feel ‘stuck’ in your relationships? Do you vacillate on what is right and what is wrong? 

So often we live in nowhere land. We accept behaviours that are unacceptable. We let resentment build and harbor ill feelings. We live in this low simmer of discomfort and angst because we are living in indecision. We haven’t decided that we will accept the unacceptable nor have we decided that we won’t. 

When we live in this purgatory. It is an awful way to live. I’m not here to tell you the right or wrong decision, I am here to tell you to simply decide. Either way. Right or wrong doesn’t really matter what does is that you make the decision. 

Decide that you are willing to live with the behavior or decide that you are not willing to live with the behaviour. You cannot start to make change until you have made the decision.  

The Weapon of Guilt

Oh, I know! Right? For many of you this subtitle landed hard! I see it so often. I see it from family, I see it from religion, I see it from cultural norms. Guilt used as a weapon to breech your boundaries. To manipulate you into tolerating the intolerable. 

I was recently having this conversation with a client who has someone in their life that weaponizes guilt against them in order to push boundaries. They lamented the fact that it was so hard because they felt so guilty for asserting themselves. They allowed themselves to feel like they were a bad person if they stood firm in their boundaries. Sound at all familiar?

I’m fairly certain we have all experienced this at some point in our lives. 

  • “You must not really love me”
  • “A good {insert religion} wouldn’t do that”
  • “If this was valuable to you then you would…”
  • “A good daughter/son/wife/husband would do this…”

After listening to all of the reasons why they felt so guilty and acknowledging how hard it was going to be I asked them a question. 

Would you rather live with temporary guilt or permanent exhaustion? 

You see the things they were being manipulated into doing were literally killing them. They were putting their life on hold for a family member that was using guilt as a weapon to manipulate. It feels incredibly difficult at the moment but the reality is that the whole thing is quite simple. Simple but not easy. 

You have a choice. 

You can choose to try and appease those around you (many of whom will never be appeased regardless of what you do) or you can choose to stand firm in your values, beliefs and boundaries. While this is temporarily difficult I can assure you that it will give you a lifetime of relief. 

Reason or Excuse

I’ve talked about this exercise in a variety of contexts. There are moments when we need to ask ourselves this simple question.

“Is this a legitimate reason to allow this behavior in my life or is this really just an excuse to make me feel better about allowing it to happen?”

When it comes to setting boundaries it is easy to mistake excuses for reasons. 

  • “It’s a cultural thing”
  • “It’s a religious thing”
  • “It’s just how they were raised.”
  • “They don’t know any better.”
  • “They aren’t ill intentioned.”

All of these things may be true. Truth doesn’t turn an excuse into a reason. These things being true doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice yourself and your values because of them. 

It can be true that it is a cultural thing and it can also be true that you won’t allow it in your life.
It can be true that it is a religious thing and it can also be true that you won’t allow it in your life.
It can be true that it is how they were raised and it can also be true that you won’t allow it in your life.
It can be true that they don’t know any better and it can also be true that you won’t allow it in your life.
It can be true that the person encroaching on your boundary isn’t ill intentioned and it can also be true that their behaviour is unacceptable to you. 

Like anything in life worth having, setting your boundaries will take practice and discipline. It will take discipline to consistently stick to your boundaries and not acquiesce to pressure. No different than any diet or exercise program, you will need to be disciplined in your execution. If you miss a time or two don’t let that dissuade you. 

Imagine what your life will look like once you become a master of setting boundaries. Use that as your intrinsic motivation to stick to it. 

Once you master the art of setting boundaries you will find that there are so many areas of life where you can apply this skill. With your kids, with your partner, with your work, with your employees, with your teams, with your boss, and your family. When executed with care and attention solid boundaries will only help solidify and deepen your relationships, not compromise them. 

I’d love to know how you make out. Drop me a note in the comments and let me know.

Real Talk International Men’s Day

On International Men’s Day I had the privilege of sitting down with three other men to discuss the importance of Men’s mental health and some of the challenges that we face as men. Even in our patriarchal society it is important to look at the price of the patriarchy on men as well as on women. I hope you enjoy!

You can check out all of Ryan’s work here

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Is Accountability the Secret Sauce to Productivity?

Audio Blog

Productivity hacks, hustle culture and busy, busy, busy seem to be the prescription of the day. If you’ve followed me for any length of time you know I am not a fan of “busy”. As an executive coach who takes a very holistic view of those I work with, I am always looking to see what I can do to distill that magic formula. The one that allows my clients to do more, in less time so they can focus on what really matters to them. 

Sadly there is no one size fits all magic formula. Accepting that I will continue to share practices that you can implement in order for you to be more efficient and productive.  

I’ve shared time management strategies, I’ve studied a variety of different productivity methodologies but there is one thing I have seen as a common thread. Most of us will do whatever we can to avoid letting someone else down. Now, that’s not to say that we don’t all at some point or another run into situations where we fall short, but in my experience this want to live up to expectations is a powerful motivator. 

In fact, it is one of the primary tools that I use with clients to assist with productivity.

Accountability; The act of being accountable;


  1. (of a person, organization, or institution) required or expected to justify actions or decisions; responsible.

Accountability is a key driver for productivity. How many times have you procrastinated on a project or task until you reach a point where you will finally be held accountable to someone that you finally get that job done? For me this TED talk, “Inside the mind of a master procrastinator” really rang true. It is well worth the time to watch it. 

Accountability is really about making a commitment to yourself, to someone directly or the public at large. We all like to honor our commitments and making a commitment to someone directly or making it publicly can be a powerful motivator.

Let’s unpack accountability a little bit and look at the different types of accountability.

Personal accountability

The subtitle of my book “When ‘Something’s Gotta Change’, Maybe It’s You!” is all about this. Personal accountability is about shifting the focus from external to internal. When Colleen was murdered, I had many friends and colleagues surround me, put their hand on my shoulder, shaking their head. They would mutter that phrase “Something’s gotta change”. 

I found that phrase became a bit of a mantra for me. I would wake up every morning and look in the mirror shaking my head saying “Something’s gotta change, something’s gotta change.” Day in, day out. Week in, week out I would just stare in that mirror and repeat that phrase “Something’s gotta change, Something’s gotta change”.

It wasn’t until I added those last three words that things really started to shift for me. That one day I stood in front of the mirror and said “Something’s gotta change…. Maybe it’s you, Mike, maybe it’s you.” 

What happened to her certainly wasn’t my fault. I could spend my days reflecting on all the things that needed to change in this world. I could lament what happened, shaking my head in despair or I could take personal accountability. I could become accountable to myself to do my best to become the change. 

It’s amazing how liberating it is when you shift to personal accountability. All of a sudden you are no longer beholden to a raft of things that are outside of your control. When you take personal accountability for your life all of a sudden you are in control. You have the power and it is incredibly freeing.   

Direct accountability

This is one of the many reasons why someone might hire a coach. Someone to hold them directly accountable for the things that they need to be getting done. There is a power when you make a commitment to someone specifically to get a thing accomplished.

As human beings we really do not like to fall short of our commitments. There are so many examples of the power of this. For me one of the best direct accountability examples is my early morning runs. Most mornings I pick Michelle up from her house at 5:30am to drive to our favourite river valley trail for our morning run. 

I am accountable to Michelle to show up and run. When my alarm goes off at 5am often the only thing that gets me out of bed is knowing that I have made a commitment to her to pick her up.

We see this kind of direct accountability in a variety of domains. It could be fitness with a workout buddy or a personal trainer. It may be in saving money with your financial planner.

When you have a goal you want to hit that is going to take some focused action, there are times when your personal discipline needs a little help. That is when finding someone to hold you directly accountable can be extremely powerful. Here are a few ways you can create some direct accountability in your life.

  • Hire a coach, trainer or other professional
    Finding a professional in whatever area you are striving in can be incredibly helpful. Not only can they assist with accountability but they can also give you some tools, techniques and tactics to ensure that you are maximizing your efficiency in achieving your goals.
  • Find an accountability buddy who is looking to accomplish something similar
    This is a simple, yet incredibly effective method. Just like Michelle and I hold each other accountable to get our runs done, I have made accountability pacts with business partners, friends and strangers who have common objectives.
  • Join a group of individuals who are striving for the same thing.
    Group dynamics can be powerful motivators. A group of people who are looking to accomplish similar goals can hold each other accountable while also cheering each other on.    

Public accountability

When I did my first Iron distance triathlon it was absolutely the most challenging physical activity I had undertaken up to that point. I remember when I first signed up for that race I knew that there was a refund period and that no one, except a select few knew that I had registered for the event. At that point in time I wasn’t really committed to the race at all. The few people who knew would certainly not hold me accountable as I would have been completely justified in bailing as a single dad and a business owner with a busy life. The race itself wouldn’t even hold me accountable as I could still get a full refund on my registration fees.

It wasn’t until I wrote a full blog post and shared it on social media that I really started to feel like I was actually committed to doing the work required to train for this event. Once I put it out there I felt very publicly accountable to get the job done. 

On the other side of the publicly accountable equation we have our political leaders, our business leaders, celebrities and the like that we, the public, hold accountable for their actions.    


If you are a leader then part of your role is not only to be accountable but also to hold others accountable for what needs to be done as well as accountable for their actions. This is never as easy as it sounds. There are many different approaches to holding people accountable and as leaders it serves us well to recognize how individuals best respond to being held accountable. 

Compassionate accountability

This is an important piece to note. Accountability needs to be done with compassion. When we talk about compassion and empathy many people tend to think of this as weak. That we make excuses and let people off the hook. This doesn’t need to be the case. We can still have accountability with compassion. 

Compassion doesn’t mean that we excuse those who we are holding accountable from the consequences of their actions, it simply means that we do so with care, kindness and seek understanding. This is especially important when we are talking about personal or self accountability. If we don’t do so with compassion it is easy to turn personal accountability into personal judgement and self loathing. We can “should” all over ourselves and this is not at all productive.

When we can hold ourselves accountable with compassion we can accept that we fell short, chalk it up as a lesson to learn from and move forward with confidence. It is about accepting that because we did not do the thing doesn’t mean that we are a failure or worthless. There is lots of literature on self-compassion and if this one rings true for you then I would suggest having a look at the work by Dr. Kristen Neff here at   

Agreement vs. Expectation

This concept is a whole article in and of itself, however it is important to mention here. If we are going to hold people accountable then it is paramount that both those holding people to account and those being held accountable are on the same page. There have been many times when I have seen leaders frustrated because, in their eyes, team members were not being accountable to getting a job done. Yet when we dive a little deeper we see that what the team member thinks they agreed to is substantially different than the leader’s expectations. 

This can be a very big point of friction in any relationship. This is why it is incredibly important to make sure that you very clearly articulate any expectations and make sure that the person on the other end actually agrees to meet those expectations. When you are able to articulate your expectations and obtain an agreement to meet those expectations you now have a commitment. When you have a commitment now you have something that each party can be held accountable to uphold. 

Holding accountable vs. being accountable

There is a difference between making someone accountable and holding them accountable. For me this is readily apparent with my kids. I can make them accountable to do the dishes or do their laundry, however if I don’t hold them accountable and ultimately do the tasks for them then there really isn’t any accountability. 

This will vary from circumstance to circumstance however as leaders we need to do more than simply tell people that they are accountable we actually need to hold them accountable. This means a few things.

  1. It means that you need to have regular check ins
  2. It means there needs to be a timeline (This could be recurring or it could be a deadline)
  3. It means that there needs to be consequences if the commitment is not upheld.


When it comes to accountability and the usefulness of it, I think in terms of getting shit done. As you can see from the commentary above there are a variety of ways we can implement accountability to ensure that we stay on track with our objectives. A gentle reminder that as always when we look at these productivity tools we need to ensure that they align with our values and we aren’t employing them chasing the wrong thing. 

The bottom line is that accountability is not something that just happens. Accountability is something that has to be cultivated with intentionality. When we employ accountability with compassion and consistency we can dramatically improve the quality of our lives. 

What are some of the best methods of accountability you have seen employed?

What Does “Stuck” Look Like (and how to get unstuck in life)

Blog Audio

How to get unstuck in life

As I sit here at my computer, with my Pomodoro Technique timer quietly counting down I sit staring at a blank computer screen. A list of a million different “things I could be doing” starts to form in my head. The procrastination monster is strong in this one my friend. I have so many different pieces I want to write. I have the beginnings of several books in my head, I even have some of them started. I have committed to publishing at least one article per week. There is no shortage of things to do yet somehow I still feel like I’m not even sure where to start. 

For me this is one of the myriad forms of what “stuck” feels like. It comes into my life a lot and requires an immense amount of discipline to move through it. Discipline. That seems to be the answer for me.

For many of the clients I work with in a one on one coaching capacity, the reason they came to me is because of this feeling of “stuckness”. Often they come from the context of business. They feel like they have hit a bit of a plateau and are restricted in their ability to move their business forward. 

I find it fascinating to note that typically when someone comes to me with this feeling of “stuck” or they report that something is impeding their business growth, we almost always find that the “stuck” extends out to most arenas in their life. 

I can’t tell you how many times when talking to a business leader we end up spending a fair amount of time talking about their personal relationships. Almost always it ends with a “Well, I really didn’t expect that we would go down that path!”

For many visionary leaders there comes a time in their life where they feel overwhelmed. They feel defeated with the sheer enormity of what they want to bring to the world. The weight of the task at hand becomes crippling at times so they stick with the tried and true. They stay with what they know or at least what they think they know. The challenge of course is the well known quote “If you continue to do what you have always done you will continue to get what you’ve always got.” 

And that my friends is exactly what “stuck” feels like. 

Add to that the feelings of anxiety, depression and our desire to avoid difficult emotions, it can become very easy to get caught up in a cycle of avoidance and procrastination. Stuck might include a fear of success, it might include a fear of failure, it might include a longing so large that it seems impossible, causing indecision and paralysis of action. 

How do we break out of stuck?

Motivation follows action. For me there have been many times where I have sought to cultivate motivation in order to inspire me to take action. I spend time reading texts, listening to speeches and digesting words of wisdom from gurus around the world. 

There are certainly days where I feel ill equipped to carry on my mission. There are times where I feel like I just need to learn a little bit more. That I need just a little more training, knowledge or expertise to move forward.

There is this feeling of imposter syndrome. Often accompanied by the question “Who the fuck am I to think I can do this?” Or “Who am I to think that people will care about what I have to say or what my vision is?” Surely I need to be better before I can proceed.

While there are times when you need to enhance skills, this line of thinking can also very easily contribute to the “stuckness” by giving us a justifiable place to spend our time. After all, we are taking in knowledge, we are learning and we are growing. Certainly that is a worthwhile endeavor right?

Sure. Maybe. Well, no not really. 

My guess is that you likely have all the knowledge you need to get unstuck and what you really need is to take action. It took me a long time to realize that it isn’t motivation that drives action but rather action that drives motivation. Seeking motivation is simply another form of procrastination. In his book The War of Art, Stephen Pressfield talks about Resistance, that mythical force that keeps you stuck. 

He has a very eloquent way of defining “Resistance” and talks about how ‘Seeking support” can easily be just another form of resistance.

“Seeking support from friends and family is like having people gathered around at your deathbed. It’s nice, but when the ship sails, all they can do is stand on the dock waving goodbye”

Stephen Pressfield

In my experience, “stuck” rarely has anything to do with a lack of knowledge, resources, or preparation and almost always has to do with a lack of action. It is not about looking for external resources, conditions or information. It is all about our internal discipline. 

What can we do?

Once we realize and accept that “stuckness” is internal then we can start to make change. As my friend and editor, who is a Canadian living in the southern United States reminded me, being stuck feels like spinning your wheels. It feels like being caught in a heavy Canadian snowfall with nothing but summer tires on your vehicle. It doesn’t matter how hard you tromp on the gas pedal your tires just spin faster and faster. 

In order to break out of being stuck in a snowstorm it means that we need to first off slow down. If you’ve read or listened to any of my other work this may be starting to sound familiar to you. The first piece of almost any puzzle is to slow the F down. In our snowstorm analogy taking your foot off the gas is the first thing that needs to happen. When we talk about this in the context of being stuck in a snowstorm it immediately makes sense. It doesn’t matter how hard you push the gas pedal, all you do is spin faster. 

Most of us have been in this situation at one point or another in our lives. However when it comes to business, life and what we want to accomplish, this idea of taking our foot off the gas is incredibly counterintuitive. I mean certainly if you want to move forward faster you need to be working harder, doing more not less right? 

The reality is that this is not at all the case and in fact just like spinning your tires in the snow the harder we work, the more we push, the deeper the rut that we are stuck in starts to become. This is what makes “stuck” feel all the more frustrating. 

“It doesn’t make any sense!” 
“I’m working harder than ever, why am I not moving forward??!!”

Sometimes when we are stuck it isn’t even just that we need to take our foot off the gas, but sometimes we actually need to put the car into reverse. Sometimes we need to put a little backward momentum into our efforts. 

If you’ve ever been stuck in a Canadian snowstorm you likely know this well. There’s this art to putting the car in reverse and then back to drive. Creating a rocking motion. Slowly but surely starting to build some momentum so that you can eventually move far enough forward that you are out of the rut and back on solid ground.  

Why do we get stuck?

Once we start to slow down we can really take a look at where this stuck feeling is coming from. I am cautious writing these words since much of “stuck” for me can be perpetuated with over analysis. Don’t spend a lot of time here but see if any of these resonate with you. 


Stuck can come when we start to play a role in our life, when we stop being authentic and we try to live the kind of life that we think others feel we should be living.


Stuck can also be a result of being held back. Your environment. What is the environment that you have created for yourself? Who is it that you are surrounding yourself with? Is it time to reevaluate all of that?


What are you committed to? Who are you committed to? Are these commitments moving you forward or are they holding you back? Is it time to reevaluate what and who you are committed to?

These are incredibly difficult questions to really look at with open and honest eyes. It is really hard to have a deep, honest look in the mirror. The truth is that often “stuck” is a result of our reluctance to look at what is holding us back. The truth is that if we were to actually admit what is keeping us stuck, we might have to make some difficult decisions. So instead of having an honest look at ourselves we avoid and distract.

In business I have seen this in the form of ignoring employees whom we really like but truly are not a fit for the role they are in. Maybe if we have an honest look in the mirror in a business context it means we need to adjust our budget, or have a difficult conversation with a supplier, competitor, colleague or boss. 

In personal life there are many things that might be keeping us stuck. Do we need to improve our physical, mental or emotional fitness? That takes time, effort and commitment.

Do we need to cut some people out of our lives? 
Do we need to stop drinking, gambling, overeating? 

These are all incredibly difficult decisions we have to make and even once we make them we have to have the discipline to see it through. When we find ourselves “stuck” it is often because we are not willing to have honest conversations about these decisions that need to be made. 

Before I wrap things up, I want to talk about one of the biggest reasons people remain “stuck” by choice. Even when they have identified the thing that is keeping them stuck it can still be hard to move forward for this one major reason. I have had this conversation with dozens, if not hundreds of people.    

Sunk cost fallacy

The Sunk Cost Fallacy describes our tendency to follow through on an endeavor if we have already invested time, effort, or money into it, whether or not the current costs outweigh the benefits.

In other words, the more time and energy we have invested into a course of action, a relationship or a certain direction the harder it becomes to abandon. This happens because no matter how logical we like to think we are, our decisions are heavily influenced by our emotions. Feelings of guilt, regret or even shame if we do not follow through with a decision influence our desire to stick with it even if that decision no longer serves us. 

Sunk Cost Fallacy is tied to commitment bias where we continue to support past decisions despite new evidence that the decision may not be the appropriate one.


As I write this I realize I could easily write an entire book on what it feels like to be stuck, and how to move forward out of the “stuckness”. I hope that this article has given you a little food for thought and I will leave you with another Stephen Pressfield quote from “The War of Art”.

“It’s not the writing that is hard. It’s the sitting down to write.”    

Stephen Pressfield
How to get unstuck in life

Pressfield is speaking in the context of writing however this statement can be applied to any course of action. It’s not the doing of the thing that is hard, it is starting doing the thing that is hard. That being the case then let’s make sure our energy is focused on starting the thing.

If you take nothing else from this article then take this, motivation follows action. Therefore action is the most important piece. You don’t need any more skill, you don’t need any more knowledge, you don’t need any more support, you simply need to take action. 

If you have a list of 1000 things you need to do and don’t know where to start, simply close your eyes and point at the list. The item you land on is where you start. Don’t second guess, just sit down and get it done. 

Motivation follows action.

The Scars That Shape Us

October 2, 2021.

It’s now been six years since I heard those three little words that would change my life. The three words that would shape my future and become a large part of my legacy. 

“Karissa is dead.”

That’s it. That was all he said and my world was forever changed. 

A wound so deep that I wondered if it would ever heal. But like most wounds they eventually heal. They heal but depending on the depth of the wound they leave a permanent scar. 

Our scars shape us. 

We can try to ignore them, we can wear them like a victim or we can wear them with pride. 

On October 2, 2021, the sixth anniversary of her murder I took the time to drive out to the mountains. I made the three hour trek to Nordegg and went for a hike up Coliseum Mountain. I have made a journey to be out in nature on most of the anniversaries since that fateful day.

October 2 for me is not so much about grieving the loss as it is about celebrating life. It is a time to reflect on the lessons learned and to look at how this scar informs my view of the world. It is about reflecting how I can use this scar to affect change in others. 

I didn’t have a choice to carry this scar or not, however,  I do have a choice in how I let it shape me. October 2 is the day each year where I spend some time getting intentional about how this wound shapes the man I am today. It is about reflecting on the man I am as well as planning for the man I want to be. 

Our scars shape us. 

Scars are a permanent part of who we are and absolutely impact how we show up in this world. 

When I was 16 my parents shipped me off to Australia to live with my Uncle John. I was way out of control. A teenager in full rebellion and Mom and Dad did not know what to do with me. Fortunately Mom’s brother John was a successful businessman. He was someone who I respected as a rebel done good.  I thought Uncle John viewed the world a little closer to how I did. Uncle Johnny taught me a lot about the value of hard work.

It was there in Australia where I earned my first major physical scar. I was in the backseat of a new found friend’s car. Stereo blaring, engine roaring, driving way too fast for the slick road conditions caused by a torrential rain storm. The windy road, an inexperienced driver, and slick conditions all a recipe for disaster. 

I was young and invincible so I sat in the middle of the backseat leaning up through the bucket seats so I could be part of the action. Life was good. Laughter abound. New friends, loud music, fast cars… 

And then there was the telephone pole. Tires releasing their grip on the pavement. Young driver overcorrecting, car flying out of control sideways into the pole. 100 to zero in an instant. With no seat belt on I got the worst of it. Thrown around like a rag doll. Broken ribs, crushed lung, ruptured spleen causing internal bleeding requiring emergency surgery. 

The final toll, 4 days in a coma, a bunch of broken ribs, a crushed lung, a ruptured spleen and a scar from belly button to sternum where they ripped me open to repair the damaged organs. A reminder I see every day of my life. 

Our scars shape us. 

In my life I have had many different scars of various shapes and sizes. All of us have. Some more, some less, it doesn’t matter. Now is not the time for comparison. Now is the time for reflection. Now is the time to get curious about your scars. Now is the time to learn from them and wear them with pride. 

What are your scars?
How do you feel about our scars?
Do you resent them?
Do you deny them?
Do you own them?
What meaning will you give to them?

These are all questions that I reflect on every year at this time. Every year I renew my commitment to “Make Beautiful Shit Happen” and make sure that I am continuing down a path that is worthy of the man this deeply scarred human being wants to be. 

Two years ago I brought this topic to my Men’s group as a theme for the night. I asked the men to reflect on the scars that have shaped them. We talked about how to make sure that we own our scars and how we can ensure that our scars do not own us. It all comes down to this simple truism. 

With awareness comes choice.

The scars I described above are fairly large and glaringly obvious. They are pretty hard to ignore. However for many of us we work hard to ignore the scars that wound us. They are too painful to acknowledge so we go about our daily lives allowing them to simmer under the surface quietly influencing our decisions, our behaviors and ultimately our outcomes in life. They become the subtle forces that silently guide us.

Every scar has a story, every story a purpose. Sometimes the meaning in those stories is abundantly evident, other times it can feel like there cannot be any possible meaning that would inflict such pain.

“For your pain is Rachel’s legacy to you. Not that she or I would inflict such pain by choice,  but there it is. And it must burn its purifying way to completion. For something in you dies when you bear the unbearable, and it is only in that dark night of the soul that you are prepared to see as God sees, and to love as God loves.”

Ram Dass – Letter to Rachel

Your scars are the living legacy of who you are. They are the roadmap of your past, your present and they will shape your future. 

The question becomes will you get intentional with how your scars shape you? Or will you let them whisper softly in your ear, so gently that we can ignore their influence and live a life by default rather than by design. 

What are some of the scars that shape you?

How do those scars impact how you show up in the world?

Where can you be more intentional about how those scars move you through life?

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