Dead Weight

I have a friend involved in a group of similar aged CEOs that gather to talk about issues, both professionally and personally that come as a result of their positions of power. One day, my friend was talking up this incredibly cool formula and worksheet that his group created to calculate everything that adds to and subtracts from personal energy. The goal is obviously to get these guys to spend more time with everything that added energy and less time with everything that subtracted. This to me was complete genius. So I demand he give me the same materials that he used, knowing this was revolutionary and incredible and if they figured out how to do that.

He gave it to me. So here it is…without further ado…the genius of smart minds…

One the left side of the worksheet has a heading that said to list the people and things that depleted you of energy in your life this week with blank lines underneath. And on the right side was the same thing, just about people and things that added energy followed by more blank lines.  

That’s it. Yeah, no kidding I shouldn’t be spending my time on things that detract energy. This isn’t revolutionary. This was nothing new at all. This was no magic formula. There was no incredible. I closed the attachment and grimaced. And wrote it off.

Maybe I’m just slow. Because this weekend, it finally hit me. I was doing something that depleted me of energy, and it was something I’ve been doing for a long time without even realizing it. The worksheet was genius. The beauty was in its simplicity. Sometimes we just don’t realize that the things we surround ourselves with might not be the best things for us.

Think about the people and things in your life that invigorate you. That motivate you. That inspire you. That fuel you, even if it’s with simply humor or friendship. Spend more time with those people. Spend more time doing those things.

Think about the people who don’t. They are like anvils tied around your legs. Making you slower, making your potential to do great things less. The time you have to spend on better things less. You know what to do with them, right?

When I was growing up, cartoons always featured anvils in some capacity, either striking someone in the head or weighing someone down. I didn’t know what an anvil was, only that they were obviously very heavy. Up until five minutes ago, I still didn’t know, so I looked it up. An anvil is a block on which another object is struck. I didn’t know it when I started writing this, but they are used when making samurai swords.

When trying to stay above water, or dare I say fly, you shouldn’t have anvils tied to your legs. It makes even getting up for a breath nearly impossible.

Think about the anvils in your life. Maybe you tie one to your own leg. Maybe you tie more than one. Maybe others saddle you with this weight. Maybe a job is weighing you down. Your financial situation. Your parents. Depending on your situation, it could be anything…it could be everything.

No matter how strong a swimmer you might be, you’re not going to get to the surface if enough weight is dragging you down.

Let these words act as a giant pair of scissors. It’s time to cut those ropes and let those anvils fall to the depths of the ocean, not taking you down with them.

Now wait…this is NOT saying to immediately cut out those people from your life, quit your job, or run away.

BUT you do need to change the nature of those relationships if it’s people. You need to change something at your job if it’s work. You need to change your attitude or your behavior if it’s you.

Shave those anvils down and turn them into something that can power you in the water. Into something that can propel you. Change them into something that adds as opposed to subtracts.

Think about the people and things that sap you of energy. Spend less time with those people. Spend less time doing those things. Change whatever you have to shed some of that weight. Put yourself of a diet from those people and those things. Just take less of them.

I know what you’re thinking…yeah, ‘easier said than done,’ right? But it’s not easy to keep your head above water with an anvil tied to your leg. And not to sound too dramatic, but it’s either them or you. These are people and things keeping you from getting what you want.

Are they worth it? If so, you need to change the nature of the relationships you have with them.