The heart and mind are two different areas with different purposes. But together, they forge our personality, attitude, and mindset, making us unique human beings. Author Adam Markel joins Steve Farber to discuss how understanding our intellect and emotions can help us come up with proper decisions and actions in life despite the occasional battle between these two forces. They also talk about Adam’s new book, I Love My Life Challenge, sharing some simple but effective tips about self-care and effective morning routines.
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The I Love My Life Challenge With Adam Markel
My guest is my dear friend, Adam Markel. Oftentimes, people introduced guests as “my dear friend.” It’s a bit of a cliché. In this case, it is true and is a word I use literally. Adam and I are dear friends. We are brothers from another mother. All those other clichés that you throw around when you talk about somebody who’s important to you are all true when it comes to Adam Markel. He is an accomplished author. He wrote the book Pivot, which was a New York Times and The Wall Street Journal bestseller. He’s a business mentor. I don’t know if anybody can ever be a former attorney. I think once you’re an attorney, you’re always an attorney. He used to do it for a living. He’s got that wonderful combination of the attorney’s mind and the human being’s heart.
We have a great time working together. You’ll see one of the reasons why Adam and I are in sync with each other. His company is called More Love Media. It’s a bit of a non sequitur to have somebody with a company of that name on a show called Love Is Just Damn Good Business, but we’ll figure it out. He’s a remarkable human being all the way around. He is very smart when it comes to business and is tuned in and connected when it comes to human beings. He’s got a new book called The I Love My Life Challenge. It’s out in the form of a workbook. I want to talk a little bit about that, but first of all, Adam, welcome.
I don’t normally interrupt or interject when someone’s doing their shtick at the beginning if they introduce me or whatever. With you, I felt comfortable to interfere. I was happy you said what you said because we are close friends and our lovely wives, and that is a blessing. We call people friends and there’s nothing wrong with that. We’re all friends. We’re all brothers and sisters and all the rest of it, but to know someone is a big deal, I think.
I have 5,000 friends on Facebook. We’re all equally close to each other. It is funny that the word friend is something that’s taken on a different meaning because of social media. The word follower has a different meaning. It might be an interesting exploration at some point to think about how those words have changed over the years, but yet, we still know genuine friendship when we experience it. I don’t think we get those confused in the day-to-day reality of things.
I hope so. You’re right, I’m still a lawyer on some level after eighteen years in that work. I’m pragmatic. I verge on cynical at times, but my heart isn’t cynical in battle with my head that will go to that place where I go, “Follower, friend.” What do these things mean in the context of our existence? What are the long-term impacts of diluting that definition on some level?
I want to explore that dynamic a little bit. You described yourself as being a bit cynical and also being heart-centered that your heart is not cynical, but something has that tendency in your psyche. That’s interesting because we tend to put people into an either/or category. Either somebody is cynical, skeptical, discerning intellectually, or heart-centered. They love everybody and everything under all circumstances and never the twain shall meet, but that’s not the case, is it?
Maybe it’s the case in some instances, or we’re convinced that it should be. Therefore, we play into some of the stories. It’s more of a both and a yes-and. I find that my mind is often questioning my heart when I counsel my heart. It’s more on the answer side, I can get to an answer more quickly if I can as an attorney take counsel with that part of myself. The heart itself is both an organ and also something that through research scientifically has been proven to emit frequency, energy. People can feel it from a distance. It thinks on some level.The mind often questions the heart when counseling the heart. Click To Tweet
There’s an element of it that’s been defined in some of the spiritual practices that I’ve been involved in. People that I’ve followed talk about the hardest being your subconscious that the things that are true for you in your heart and in your subconscious are Truth. Whereas, our heads, in many ways, are driven by the instincts that we have. I know we go to that fight, flight, and freeze thing a lot. We can stay away from as many stereotypes as we possibly can. To me, that’s fine and that’s true. That is the way our reptilian brain works, but at the same time, our mind is constantly on instinct. It’s running on what the input is telling us in a moment and all that sort of trying to discern what things mean is that cerebral activity. It can steal a lot of the joy out of what it means to be alive at the moment. We’re in the middle of a pandemic when we are having this conversation. Months ago, we would’ve said we’re right in the middle of a pandemic, so it’s a long middle.
It’s interesting because if I could paraphrase a little bit of what you said, the mind and the brain can ask the right questions and the heart comes up with the answers is one possible way of looking at it, at least, for some people. What I’ve noticed with you is that you do have that great ability to ask critical questions. I have that ability somewhat as well, but it’s a great tool. The mind and the intellect, the ability to discern, the ability to stand back and ask if something is true or not especially nowadays is an important question that we all have to learn how to answer in our own way. The heart, sometimes, as the old saying, “The heart knows no reason.” It’s a different thinking. It’s a different impulse that comes out of the heart. When we use the word love, which you and I use quite a bit, that word means a lot of different things to a lot of different people or it means a lot of different things to the same person in different contexts. Often, I like to say that I love pizza and I love my wife, but I love them differently. One I shouldn’t love and one I should, but it’s all love. I’m not making an intellectual decision.
I’m from New York. You can’t make the statement that you shouldn’t love pizza in my presence. Pizza is a thing to love, just love them differently.
Should or shouldn’t is a metabolic consideration.
Back to what we were discussing, in thinking about the heart and the head, it’s an interplay between those two things. The head representing the intellect or intelligence. The heart representing love. Love and intelligence equal wisdom. How would you gain wisdom without both? They are compounds like water is hydrogen and oxygen. You can’t get water without those two things. It’s not about showing up only with your heart. There’s nothing wrong with that. There are lovely people that are heart-centered, but maybe don’t use their intellect as much as they might or could if they chose to. It is the same thing with a person because we do a lot of work as we do with businesses and not only organizations. They’re made up of different people and everything. You meet some people that are much more coming from their headspace, maybe more from the left side of their brain, more analytical. You don’t engage their heart, emotions, or feelings easily. There are others that engage their feelings and their emotions all the time, but don’t necessarily think critically about things. I think that’s one of these things in life. One of these wonderful harmonies that we seek to blend those two things.
Having said that, you named your company More Love Media, not More Critical Thinking Media. Tell us a little bit about your company and why you called it that?
First, we thought it was a great name because it spoke to what matters to us, and what matters to us as an organization is that we’re contributing something of value. We believe and we have confidence in our products and the services that we provide and all that kind of thing. We also wanted to make a statement of what we think matters to us greatly and to other people. Not everybody is going to get that. Not everybody is interested in that necessarily, but we feel that if we can contribute more love in everything we do, everything we do will be better. Everything we do that’s the embodiment of more love will create something valuable in the world.
By way of an intention, it is a statement of sort. It is a statement, not of a sort. It dovetails nicely with a lot of what we do in the world because we train people to speak, to exercise their voice, to communicate more effectively and impactfully what’s important and matters to them. For us to not do that, we do not embody that, we take the opportunity and the chance to model that, then that would have been a missed opportunity, we thought.
I may be harping on this a bit, but it seems to me, an important distinction to make is this critical thinking versus what we stereotypically think of as heart-centered because I think that our tradition as business people tends to favor critical thinking over the heart and that’s changing. People are beginning to see or at least beginning to more consciously recognize that it is a balance of those two things. You don’t sacrifice one for the other. Critical thinking in the context of a speech, for example, comes into play for me. It’s making sure that the content is good. That it makes sense logically that you can validate it, prove it, and you can give the evidence.
When I say, for example, love is just damn good business, I need to showcase case after case and cite the research. I need to have that discernment with my intellect that proves it out. In order for that message to connect with other people, it has to come from the heart. The mind understands, but the heart connects and commits. As one of my mentors, Terry Pierce, used to say, “I can understand what you’re saying and not care or I could care about what you’re saying and not understand what to do about it.” Ideally, I want both. As a speaker, I need to convey both. As a listener, I need to experience both of those things. They need to understand it and I need to care about it. If we can bring those two things together, then we can change the world and move mountains. In the training that you do with people, I’m assuming that both of those things come into play.
I’m one that could probably complain about some of the time I spent as a lawyer. Not what lawyering did to me, but how I engaged with that profession. I’m always harder on myself than I know I ought to be because I helped a lot of people. I loved one aspect of the law, which was the counseling aspect. That is interesting because that’s what I do to this day and it’s where I started. I was a middle school English teacher for a couple of years before I went back to law school. I did that profession mostly out of fear that I wouldn’t otherwise be able to ever own a home. I grew up in an apartment so the idea of not ever owning a home or having a pool or being able to have a big family that my wife, Randi and I wanted to have. Lo and behold, we have four healthy kids. You guys have six between you and Veronica. Those little critters cost a couple of bucks when we still have two in college.
I could convince myself that, “I’ve got to go back and get a higher education and become a professional.” The book Pivot and in a lot of my work of late has been around how it is that you pivot in life. How do you reinvent? What are those small distinctions and things? One thing I rarely talk about is that I learned a great deal of critical thinking. My skill as a critical thinker is from the practice of law. You sounded like a lawyer. You’re setting up a logical series of premises that will lead to a conclusion. That’s how you bring people along. Something that I didn’t know when I was practicing law when I was regularly in court and in front of judges, juries and the like was that in order for people to not just understand, but to care about what it is they understand due to your great sequence of premises and conclusion.
For them to care, they have to feel you, and that is indispensable. It’s indispensable in your family, with your kids, your spouse, your partners, with people, with your friends. Rarely do we spare a kind word for each other and there’s no replacing that. Where I meet people sometimes is that they’ve been raised to see that as weak or a soft skill as it’s been called in the business. They’re jammed up for a lot of reasons that they’ve defined love or the way they were. They came to understand it. As young people, we don’t include the demonstrative expression of love in the presence of other people, including people they’ve never met before. What I’ve found is that the capacity to not only love others but for others to feel your love for people you’ve never spent five minutes with.The heart and the head are interplay of two things. Click To Tweet
In the work that we do, often we speak to people we don’t meet. Later on, your business gets to meet and dive deeper with people, but the capacity for people to feel our love is real. It’s real that when I forget, I need reminders and fortunately, I get them. God has graced me in that way. I was on a client call with somebody we work with who’s in Japan, who’s a hardcore business person. He wanted to express himself but didn’t know quite how to do that without putting his career in jeopardy. I gave him some reading and some things that we’re working on. One of these books that I found a while ago that I love is the book I happen to have on my desk. This is Michael Singer’s book, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself. I have read this book many years ago. The way I read books is typically in the hot tub.
They grow like a Jersey girl’s hair on a humid summer day. I have married a Jersey girl, so I can say that. The book expands and then the dog-earing is like, “I convinced myself. I’ll go back and read every one of those pages again.” I read this book 2 or 3 times, but it’s interesting because he was reading it. We were talking about it. I was in another room in the house, I kid you not, a cabinet door opens. We have a glass bookcase and the door opened by itself. He says to me, “Do you know that behind you, the door opened?” We were having this conversation. We were talking about two books, The Presence Process, which is Michael Brown’s book, and The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer. He says, “Where’s your copy of The Presence Process?”
I said, “It’s upstairs.” I went and looked in the cabinet and I go, “Guess what’s here?” It was one of those, whatever you want to make-believe about that. Inside the book, there’s this Hallmark card. Inside this Hallmark card is this beautiful card was written, like a full-on card. On two sides were pictures of me and this person. She’s thanking me for this book and what it’s meant to her, and how she’s living her life. She says, “I love my life. Thanks to you. I finally learned how to do so.” All it took was a pivot. How do you put words to something like that? I did meet this person at a book signing but I didn’t know her. She was so kind and loving to then consider to write a card and do all that.
It reaffirms that part of me that knows the truth about all of us. My mind will tell me otherwise when I see someone walking in the airport carelessly without a mask, not caring who else is around them. I know that’s been made into a political thing. I’m not going to get into politics. I know we won’t do that. I’ve made a bit of a statement I suppose, but so be it. My mind will take me to that place of judgment about someone that I would judge. Yet, this is a reminder to me of what we all are. Every human being, this is who we are.
I think we and the people that do the work that we do are fortunate because we write books, etc. More often, it puts us on the receiving end of notes like that because our ideas, if they’re useful, then they’re going to affect people in positive ways. Some of those people will reach out to say so, and a practice that I’ve made over the years is when I have somebody, for example, email me after they’ve read one of the books. I’ve gotten more than one of these over the years of thoughtful emails as to what the impact of the message was, how it affected their lives, what changed for them, what it made them think about, and how it inspired them.
What I will do is I’ll pick up the phone and I’ll call that person. I’m not exaggerating. Some of my best friends in my life started in exactly that way. I wrote a book, they read the book, they wrote to me, and I called them. It is such an incredible friendship. Reaching out to another person is something we all know. That’s why Hallmark and American Greetings exist because people appreciate when we reach out to them. There’s something I want to ask you about as far as that goes because what we’ve been talking about so far is our willingness and ability to express to reach out to somebody else. Your t-shirt says, “I love my life.” Your book that’s coming out is called, The I Love My Life Challenge. That’s inwardly directed. That’s self-directed. That’s not outwardly directive. Talk a little bit about the relationship between that self-love and our capacity to express that to other people.
I have a couple of things to say. One is that A Course in Miracles, this big beautiful book was written I think in 1968 or 1969 or something. It is poorly channeled. I’ve only read a handful of pages in this tome of a book, but I was directed and guided to it by a dear friend years ago. For people that are interested maybe in a project that’s a little less daunting than this, although maybe you have the staying power, in full transparency, I’ve read chapter 30 100 times. I probably could have read the whole thing by now, but chapter 30 has hooked me and got into my heart long ago. It’s called The New Beginning: Rules for Decision. How it is that you create the day that you would want. We could spend hours talking about that, but to answer your question, the reason that we create that day is by having it, we’re able to give it. By having it, we’re able to make it a gift to others. I believe that we are giving others the love we give ourselves and that isn’t too good.
More often than not, it’s conditional. When we’re good little boys and girls, we love ourselves. When we’re not, we don’t. We heap judgment on ourselves and therefore we’re justified in heaping judgment on other people. The Golden Rule in the Bible is such a beautiful thing. This has many lovely ways to look at not only how you treat people the way you would want to be treated. In business, that rule is applicable. Sell to people the way you want to be sold. Market to people the way you’d appreciate being marketed to. There are many ways to apply that. It’s interesting because in conversation with a gentleman who’s a peace activist who I had on the show a couple of years ago on our Conscious Pivot Podcast, he said to me, “That Golden Rule thing has been stuck in my craw for a long time.”
I said, “Why?” He says, “It is because when it says, ‘Love others as you love yourself,’ the problem is that you love others the way you love yourself.” It was the same thing in A Course Of Miracles, that chapter. To do unto others is a big deal. First, you have to do unto yourself. How do you know how to treat anyone else if you can’t give somebody anything you don’t possess? How could you give anybody unconditional love if you don’t possess unconditional love? It begins with you, Steve. It begins with I.
As an aside, A Course in Miracles, the idea behind it, the ideal way to read it is page by page, one section a day until you work your way through the whole thing. I have started A Course in Miracles and the last count is 628 times. You’ve inspired me to maybe take another go at it or maybe to give myself permission to skip around in there a little bit in trying to be compliant with the way you’re “supposed to do it.”
Go to chapter 30 to start with. That’s my recommendation only because it was recommended to me. That was a great call.
You have a very popular TEDx Talk on this subject and it ties into this whole, The I Love My Life Challenge and theme. What’s the high-level message on that?
The through-line is because we train people to deliver TED Talks or people who have a bucket list to get on a TED stage or even to do a keynote. We’re speaking as you do well, by the way. We train people to create a through-line. That’s usually the hardest part for a professional speaker or somebody who wants to be a better communicator, like a CEO or someone in an organization that doesn’t communicate well or as effectively or as impactful as they would like to. Often, it’s because there are many ideas that are competing to be expressed and they don’t know which one is the most important or how to not shotgun or fire hose the information. We create one through-line and the through-line from my TEDx Talk was a question. It wasn’t a statement. The question is what if you decided to love your life, no matter what?People must feel you if you want them to care and understand. Click To Tweet
At the time that I gave the talk in late 2018, the world had challenges. I had challenges. I’d been through challenges in my career pivoting out of a company that I cofounded. I was running and having to eat my own cooking, as ironic as that was to be in the excruciatingly humble position. This I love my life practice for 8 to 9 years at that point. I’m realizing I had to put it to the test. Could I love my life in the middle of a mid-career change? Could I love my life when there was uncertainty present? When there was reason to be afraid of things unknown, money, anything, our diseased mind will give us things to be afraid of every minute of the day if we allow it to. The process of eating the cooking and seeing whether it held up, whether that I could love my life no matter what, that was the through-line of that talk. It couldn’t be more important now. There’s so much that is interfering with our joy and our ability to be loving of ourselves in the midst of all this imperfect stuff that’s happening, our visceral reactions to things, the vitriol that we feel when we see someone who’s so different in their perspective, politically or socially or otherwise.
In the midst of all that, a real pivot point in our world, could you love your life no matter what became a driving force behind this new project, letters, and cards like the one that that woman wrote to me. I thought, “This is not the private practice anymore, for me,” even though I did the TED Talk to give that a fuller expression and it did that. The thing that’s we’ve got working now is there’s a workbook that’ll be out. The book will be available for pre-order and it will officially launch on January 5th. The companion book will be out some months later. The workbook is how it is that if you were going to, from a theoretical standpoint, Steve, where we’re hypothetical-izing, a made-up word. In the law, that’s what we did all the time. We created hypotheticals. Hypothetically speaking, without 30 years on a therapist’s couch or going back and having that conversation with a dead parent or dead person who was influential in your life, could you develop practices and even rituals to love your life? Such that there would be the room, the possibility, the space for change to happen even transformation possibly.
The premise and the promise of The I Love My Life Challenge is that if I do a simple practice or set of practices over the course of 30 days, I’ll have more of an experience of loving my life. Is that what you’re saying? Is that as simple as developing a practice along those lines?
Simple, but not easy because we know how when it comes to developing new practices, at the end of the year, everybody will set resolutions for themselves that will be broken three weeks later. We get that and it is not easy. Use the great word there, which is experience. Part of what drives me is each day to curate and create from A Course in Miracles, how do you create the experience you want to have for that day? What’s the experience of being? We know what the experience of doing. Everybody’s got a big do list. I got as big a do list as anybody, I suppose, but that’s not being. That is only one aspect of our living.
To me, feeling and had resonance are all we have. At the end of our days, I don’t believe this is it. I do believe in eternity and all of that, but that notwithstanding. At the end of our days, in this meat suit, we’ll have one thing and that’s resonance, a feeling of what my life was like. If your life is made up of constant worry and you’re alternating in fear states, I’m not looking to scare you when I say this or scare myself when I say it. On the last day we got, in that last moment consciously, that’s what we’re going to feel. We’ll be afraid to die. We’ll have fear and worry about whatever it is because we spend our lives worrying. I feel like it’s logical. If I want to feel differently on that day because the day is coming for all of us. There’s no stopping that. I want to feel something else that day. I want to feel something else at that moment. That’s not something I can create for the first time. It’s a slow, steady build in my opinion. The benefit is that you don’t have to wait for that day to feel that way. You feel that way your whole way through.
A big part of this is making a conscious choice to feel that way. A lot of times, we’ll sing the song about how we need to be self-made, particularly the American culture. It’s about making the right choices, making the right decisions, and achieving the right goals. We can choose our lives. This is part of the American entrepreneurial spirit or any entrepreneurial spirit, for that matter. When it comes down to this premise of, “I could also choose to love my life. I can make that choice, then I don’t know that I have that choice.” There’s nothing more than we have more direct influence over that one choice. There’s no external fact that they can get in our way. It scares the hell out of us or a lot of us because we don’t believe that it’s true or possible, on some level. There’s one technique that you teach that doesn’t take any kind of preparation. It doesn’t take any skill or ability and it has to do with how you start out your day. What is that?
My grandmother used to say, “You leave the house on the right foot.” It’s a great old cliché, but I love that it was this special person in my life. My grandmother passed in the same year that our youngest daughter was born in 2000 and I miss her. I consciously bring that when I say that, “I want to think about her.” For me, it’s important that we step out on the right foot. I think about that before I go on stage or virtual stage because we’re not physically stepping out onto a platform stage.
Metaphorically, we step out of it.
Ass glued to chair is something we can all relate to these days.
Metaphorically, when you step out on the stage.
To me, it is the most important that in anything that we do is that we step out on the right foot. What that means in our lives is right thinking. It is righteousness. It is the hardest thing for all of us because we alternate between right thinking and wrong thinking. If we have self-awareness, then we feel guilty or shitty about the wrong thinking. We’ve got that going on. It’s amazing and if anybody got to look inside most of our heads, they’d probably lock us up, but the good news is we’re all that way whether we want to admit it or not. We co-exist that way and not so well at times. To me, the way I wake up in the morning is that right foot is that stepping out, as my grandmother would say. The first conscious thoughts of the day and the first words that come out of my mouth because if we were to have to be forced to listen to a recording of everything we said for a day, most of us would cringe. We couldn’t believe who said that.
The start of the day has so much control over. This is the first ritual, this is the start, not the end by any means. It’s the beginning of the book, not the end. How do you wake up? What’s your process for doing that? For most people, I’ve seen this firsthand, they look if their phone rings. They look at their phone, then proceed to pick up their phone. They’ll look if somebody texted them. They’ll turn off their alarm. They’ll look at Facebook, if there is email, whatnot. They run to make coffee. They run to get the kids. They run to the bathroom. To get started quickly and without a lot of consciousness at that moment, that’s the way you’re beginning your day. No wonder your day goes sideways so fast or whenever it does. How do you reset or recover when you’re starting off on the wrong foot? To me, you can do something that takes only a few seconds every day. There’s an expanded version of what you do, the next domino in the book. You can sit in bed and appreciate for a moment the fact that you woke up. Think about that, Steve. I’m a lawyer, but I don’t practice. I’m not doing that for a living anymore, but I’m still a lawyer. Did anybody give you a contract, Steve Farber, when you went to bed last night, that said you were going to wake up today?
No.Always leave the house on the right foot. Click To Tweet
I didn’t get one either. I’m yet to meet anybody that ever answers that question, yes. You woke up nonetheless, even though it wasn’t guaranteed. There are people who went to bed the same time you did last night, put their head on a pillow who didn’t wake up this morning. That’s also a fact. In that moment that you wake up, why couldn’t it be a sacred moment? Something holy without religion, but something important that you recognize that it’s a gift that not everybody got that day. The first part is to be aware, wake up. I hope everybody’s agreeing that they’ll do that tomorrow. I want to wake up tomorrow and it’s a metaphor too. Waking is not just physical waking. It’s mental, emotional, and spiritual for sure. Can we wake up and be a little more conscious now than we were?
I’m tough on myself. I don’t always feel like I’m making the progress I want to make, but I know if I can be a little bit more conscious and awake now than I was, I’m going to be okay. That’s number one. The second of the three parts is to feel grateful. Can you cultivate some gratitude in those waking moments where you go, “I’m grateful that I’m waking up in a bed?” When there are people who are homeless all over this country. The homeless population has grown so much. I know you live in San Diego downtown. You’ve seen it firsthand. My brother and sister-in-law live in Manhattan. There’s so much to be grateful for including the fact that you woke up in a bed. What else could you be grateful for at that moment?
If that takes you ten seconds to, “I’m grateful for my life. I’m grateful for my wife.” If you sit there for five minutes blissing out in gratitude, so be it. The last thing is that you say something out loud. When I was a lawyer, I put my feet on the floor when we lived back in Jersey. I would feel the strain sense of anxiety. The first thing my feet would touch the floor, I realized how much there was I had to do that day, how many expectations there were, the fights I had to get in, or the fights I was going to get in that I had to win and all the rest of it. The second my feet would hit the floor, I’d feel this sense of anxiety. Sometimes it is even dread. I ended up in an emergency room one day because I thought I was having a heart attack that turned out to be an anxiety attack back then, but it would start with that first feeling in the morning.
Now, when I put my feet on the floor, I thought, “I’m happy I’m awake. I’m grateful for many things.” I put my feet on the floor. Instead of what I used to say, which I used to grunt sometimes or I’d say an expletive. At the start of the day now, I put my feet on the floor and I say four simple words. They’re not trite to me. They’re meaningful. I love my life, like it’s written on my shirt. I say those things. I say those words because I want those to be my first words of the day. I want to imagine that we are as powerful as you said, Steve, that we can create our own existence. By speaking things into existence, I think is a powerful way to do that.
It is the pure gratitude of being alive, first thing, then it’s expanding on that gratitude, developing and cultivating that ability to recognize all of the things in my life that I’m grateful for, and then hitting the floor and making a verbal out-loud declaration of that in the form of, “I love my life.” That’s a simple process and powerful. This idea of gratitude, it’s a skill. It’s something that we can get better at. I was in a session, a seminar. I’m sure many people have done similar things. We did a little exercise where you make a list of all the things that you’re grateful for and you get two minutes and how many can you come up with?
I had twenty and I’m going like, “I’m grateful for my family.” We had people asked, “How many on your list?” This one person had 60-something. They said, “Would you read your list to us?” She started reading this beautiful list about all the little things that she was grateful for. My thought was, “She is good at this. She must be practicing this.” It turns out this is a practice that she’s been engaged in for many years by keeping a gratitude journal. You get better at it to realize what I’m grateful for. I’m grateful for this soundboard because it makes me sound better. I’m grateful for this mug because it keeps my coffee hot for hours. All of a sudden, everything becomes this wonderful field of crops to be harvested around us and we don’t notice it. It is something that takes practice and the better we get at it, the more grateful we are.
Imagine 28 days of doing something that strengthens that new muscle. It’s not something I got taught at home actually, even though my parents were loving people. I didn’t get introduced to it in school at any point along the school path. It’s one of those things. I’m grateful for all the judges in my life. I’m grateful for my adversaries. It would be interesting to go back and practice law. I want to go back and practice law and put these things in because that’s a true test. Can it be done on the field of battle? Go on a gratitude walk. If you’re inclined to do that, take a short walk, for 5 to 10 minutes for resilience training. We like to say to people go for a 30-minute walk, but take a walk and see how many things that you could recognize you’re grateful for, the air, sky, sun, and all those things.
Speaking of finding everything in your life to be grateful for, I happen to know that you, coming up soon, have a dentist appointment that you don’t want to be late for. I know you’re grateful for your teeth and for your dentist for digging into them. With that in mind, I’m grateful that you’ve kept your teeth so far because it gives you that beautiful smile that we have seen. Adam, I want to bring this in for a landing. It is the point of that whole thing. The book, The I Love My Life Challenge is either in pre-order, about to come out or it’s already out. I can’t wait to see it myself. I saw some of the early workups of the cover, but I haven’t seen the final. I’m excited about that. Other than that, where should people go to find you? Where’s the best place that people can reach out to you?
AdamMarkel.com, for people that love podcasts, we have a great podcast not because of me, but we have great guests as you do. That website is a good one to find out more about what I do, just like you love to work with organizations, speaking and presenting workshops on topics related to what we’ve discussed. If that’s something that would be valuable, feel free to reach out to us.
The two of us together are a good combination too. When you take Adam Markel and Steve Farber, you put them together, you get The Dam Farkel.
We have a pivot leap repeat to accomplish at some point.
We will get to that someday. Adam, what a blast this has been. We don’t let other people listen to us talk usually. I’m glad we had the opportunity to do that. Thank you for reading. I hope you come back again next time. Until then, do what you love in the service of people who love what you do.
- The I Love My Life Challenge
- The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself
- The Presence Process
- A Course in Miracles
- TEDx Talk – Doing This for Ten Seconds Can Change Your Life! By Adam Markel
About Adam Markel
Adam Markel is a #1 Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Los Angeles Times and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of Pivot: The Art & Science of Reinventing Your Career and Life . A leading international keynote speaker, Adam has reached tens of thousands worldwide with his message of Resilience as the competitive edge in the face of today’s complex markets. An attorney, entrepreneur, transformational trainer and executive mentor, Adam is a sought-after business culture catalyst who inspires, empowers and guides organizations and individuals to create sustainable, high performance strategies.
Adam is also the CEO of More Love Media and host of The Conscious PIVOT podcast, where he shares his insights on pivoting and resilience in today’s fast paced market and interviews experts, innovators and influencers in the areas of business and life.
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