Stop waiting & make amazing happen

by | May 21, 2012

Mr. Incredible, you’ll recall, arrives home from work one day to find the neighbor kid lurking on his tricycle in the Incredibles’ driveway.

“What are you waiting for?” Mr. Incredible demands.

“I dunno,” shrugs the kid. “Something amazing, I guess.”

That wishful statement from a cartoon boy reveals profound insights into human nature.

It explains why millions of people lurk at magazine racks gawking at celebrities in cheap tabloids.

Amazing, isn’t it, how much time people will spend watching other people be amazing? Fearful and unwilling to live an outstanding life themselves, they get their fix of amazing vicariously.

Are you lurking on the sidelines of life waiting for something amazing to happen?

Amazing doesn’t just happen. You have to make it happen.

Opportunity ships never come in while you’re lazing on the beach, gazing wistfully at the horizon. You have to build them yourself, turn your back to land, and set sail.

The passive life is the entropic life — which is to say a life squandered and tainted by regret.

The only honorable form of waiting is that of working in your daily trenches, building the foundations of your greatness. As Longfellow concludes his classic poem, “A Psalm of Life”:

Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.

The most amazing accomplishments take time and patience to build. Fireworks and cathedrals are both amazing, but one is gone in a flash and the other lasts for centuries.

And while you’re building your amazing magnum opus, never forget that you’re enveloped in amazing miracles every mundane moment of every day. While dreaming of grand adventures, never miss the ones right in front of your nose.

Remember how Bob Parr, fed up with the drudgery of his insurance job, tries to relive his Mr. Incredible days by doing covert hero work at night? His wife, Helen (Elastigirl), pleads with him:

“Yes, [the glory days] happened. But this — our family — is what’s happening now, Bob. And you are missing this!”

With discerning eyes and an attuned heart, playing and laughing with your family is more amazing than an expedition to the pyramids on the back of a camel.

Living a life of amazement usually takes more quiet gratitude than intense striving. It’s more about attitude than action.

But make no mistake — your actions will dramatically impact your attitude. As Roy H. Williams advises:

“If you will expand your world, you must crawl on your hands and knees, get on your belly and squirm under the fence that surrounds your insulated life.”

So drive a different way to work. Go home and dance with your spouse and tickle your kids. Wake up early and marvel at the sunrise.

Take that trip to South America you’ve been dreaming of. Act on that inspiration to develop that product. Write that book that’s weighing on your heart.

Take nothing for granted. Live extraordinary. Be incredible and make amazing happen.

(For tools to make amazing happen by living your purpose, click here to download my free toolkit now.)

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