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Being Subtle

Being Subtle

Growing up I always through that the biggest changes would come from incredibly impactful events.  I thought that I would win an award, earn a huge bonus, or do something to catapult my career.  I always looked at others who have had success and could point to one single act, event, situation etc. that pushed them to that level of success.

Over the years I have realized that I was completely wrong.  We may look at the Super Bowl winning football team or the gold medal winner and point to events that suddenly put them in center stage, but their path to that point was likely through consistent hard work.  Yes they may have had a break or two, but those weren’t the reason for their success, rather it is their perseverance to succeed.

In my own life I have learned to pay attention to the subtleties more often.  I learned to focus on daily small improvements instead of hoping for my big moment.  I learned to listen to the quiet voice inside rather than the screaming ego that we all must confront.  I learned to enjoy a quiet evening with loved ones versus the party of the year.  

Noticing the subtleties also has helped me avoid common pitfalls.  I realize that buying material things can become a bad habit used to avoid confronting change.  I learned that working every day is more impactful over the long run than working extremely hard today. 

I think the Tao Te Ching says it best when it says that we should “avoid extremes, excess, and extravagance.”  Doing so you will likely find the often-missed aspects of life that can truly make the biggest impact on your life.