#073 – Essentialism Summary (Essentialism Pt 23) [Podcast]

We have spent 22 weeks talking about the issue of Essentialism.  We are now at the end of our study on this, and today we give an Essentialism Summary.  In this episode, we cover the last chapter of Greg’s book, as well as go through a big overview of the entire book.

Essentialism Summary

Essentialism Summary

What is the essence of Essentialism?

“There are far more activities and opportunities in the world than we have time and resources to invest in,” McKeown says. “And although many of them may be good, or even very good, the fact is that most are trivial and few are vital.”

That’s the crucial difference between blessing and burden. We can fill our time with very good things and end up saddled, straddled, and stressed. That’s because good things might still be trivial.

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#072 – Now (Essentialism Pt 22) [Podcast]

What does it mean to live fully in the now … the present moment? It means that your awareness is completely centered on the here and now. You are not worrying about the future or thinking about the past. When you live in the present, you are living where life is happening. The past and future are illusions, they don’t exist.

Now

Now

If you’re not living in the present, you’re living in illusion. That seems to a be a pretty good reason to live in the present, doesn’t it? But how often are we worrying about things that have yet to come, how often do we beat ourselves up for mistakes that we’ve made, no matter how much time has passed? The answer is too much. Not only will living in the present have a dramatic effect on your emotional well-being, but it can also impact your physical health. It’s long been known that the amount of mental stress you carry can have a detrimental impact on your health. If you’re living in the present, you’re living in acceptance. You’re accepting life as it is now, not as how you wish it would have been. When you’re living in acceptance, you realize everything is complete as it is. You can forgive yourself for the mistakes you’ve made, and you can have peace in your heart knowing that everything that should happen will.

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#071 – Greg McKeown Interview (Essentialism Pt 21) [Podcast]

As we wrap up this study on Essentialism, I wanted to play an interview with Greg McKeown. I had hoped to interview Greg myself, but our schedules didn’t work out.  Instead, I want to play you a recent interview with Greg by Michael Hyatt.  This interview comes from Platform University, a wonderful interactive environment from Michael Hyatt that I subscribe to. Platform University is a great resource for how to better articulate your message or website.  I would highly encourage you to check out Michael’s site as it provided tremendous value for such small subscription cost.

Greg McKeown

Greg McKeown

Greg talks about a variety of issues in this interview.  I found his take on two types of people (lost and those who know they are lost) to be particularly inspiring.

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#070 – Focus (Essentialism Pt 20) [Podcast]

In my life I’ve gone through periods of intense, driven productivity – months where everything fell into place, and my goals almost seemed to accomplish themselves. At the other extreme, there have been times in my life where I was completely overwhelmed, burdened by my different projects and responsibilities – and frustrated because so many of them not only challenged me, but didn’t matter to me. There were days when I asked myself how did I end up here? How did I end up working on all these things that aren’t who I am, and that don’t represent where I am going?

Focus

Focus

So what is focus all about?  How do we build focus and maintain it?  How does this relate to establishing Essentialism in our lives?

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#069 – Progress (Essentialism Pt 19) [Podcast]

Every day do something that will inch you closer to a better tomorrow … toward your resonators … your dreams … your essential things.

Progress

Progress

We can get so “destination minded” that we forget the journey in front of us. If we do this we lose site that making any progress is better than no progress.

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#068 – Subtract (Essentialism Pt 18) [Podcast]

To attain knowledge, add things every day. To attain wisdom, subtract things every day. —Lao-tzu

Subtract

Subtract

What is the obstacle that is keeping you back from achieving what really matters to you? By systematically identifying and removing this “constraint” you’ll be able to significantly reduce the friction keeping you from executing what is essential.

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#067 – Buffer (Essentialism Pt 17) [Podcast]

The problem is that very few people know what buffer is, let alone ever experience it. So why don’t we have any? Why are we so overcommitted and crazy-busy?

Buffer

Buffer

Life is a long-distance run not a sprint. If you and I are going to be effective over the long-term, we have to create buffer and pace ourselves.

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#066 – Margin (Essentialism Pt 16) [Podcast]

Margin is the space between our load and our limits.  It is the amount allowed beyond that which is needed.  Margin is something held in reserve for contingencies or unanticipated situations.

Margin

Margin

If you and I are going to be effective over the long term, we have to create margin in our lives.  This is not optional.  It is not a luxury; it is something we have to have in order to take care of ourselves and be healthy.  We have to get that margin back in our lives and pace ourselves for the long term.

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#065 – Edit (Essentialism Pt 15) [Podcast]

We previously likened looking at our lives as a journalist … listening, asking questions, connecting the dots, investigating. Another way to integrate Essentialism is to see yourself as an editor, where you edit your life.

Edit

Edit

The root word for “decision” is cis or cid, which means “to cut.”  You see this root word in “scissors.”  A great way to embrace essentialism is to view your life as an editor … to cut out things in your life, in order to make room for more important things in your life.

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#064 – Uncommit (Essentialism Pt 14) [Podcast]

Sometimes we truly have so much to do, we don’t know which end is up. But sometimes the frenzy is self-induced.

Uncommit

Uncommit

Feeling overwhelmed is sometimes a matter of perception – if you think you have too much to do, your limbic system takes over and you can’t think creatively about alternatives.

Overscheduling is a common form of resistance because it seems so virtuous. “I want to write, I really do, but I can’t because I have all these other (less satisfying and less scary) things to do.” Overcommitting yourself is one way to keep yourself safe from the risk of noticing how you feel and what you think and trying to write about that.

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