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To Think About . . .
The body is the servant of the mind. It obeys the operations of the mind, whether they be deliberately chosen or automatically expressed. James Allen
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Discussion Forum > Profound Time & Life Management Quotes

“In the absence of clearly defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily trivia until ultimately we become enslaved by it.”
— Robert Heinlein
January 7, 2015 at 11:55 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
“How thin can you spread yourself before you’re no longer there?”
— Dr. Stephen R. Covey
January 7, 2015 at 11:59 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
"Plans are nothing; but planning is everything."
— Dwight D. Eisenhower
January 7, 2015 at 12:10 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
"No plan survives contact with the enemy; or in this case, reality."
— Mark Divine, Commander, U.S. Navy SEALs
January 7, 2015 at 12:18 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
"Everyone has a plan until you hit them in the jaw."
— Mike Tyson
January 7, 2015 at 12:30 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
"Embrace the process. See the planning process itself (not the resulting plan) as the main thing."
— Les McKeown
January 7, 2015 at 12:32 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
<< No plan survives contact with the enemy; or in this case, reality. >>

Or as we used to say when I was in the Army:

"If there are two courses of action open to the enemy, they will take the third."
January 7, 2015 at 13:12 | Registered CommenterMark Forster
Mark:

"If there are two courses of action open to the enemy, they will take the third."

Great one. Innovate and adapt quickly. As the unwritten motto for the Navy SEALs expresses: "Semper Gumby". Meaning "Always Flexible".
January 7, 2015 at 15:05 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
Hmmm. These quotes highlight the paradox between having goals and being in the moment.
January 9, 2015 at 17:24 | Unregistered Commentermichael
@michael:
<<These quotes highlight the paradox between having goals and being in the moment.>>

I think it is matter of view. The only moment when you can do something about your goals is present moment.

My favorite book is Shapiro: Goal-free living (it is not about living without goals but about the fact that goal is not one unmoving point in the future towards which we measure everything).
January 10, 2015 at 8:40 | Unregistered CommenterDaneb
@Daneb: Thanks for the tip - I'll check it out.

I'd certainly agree that fixation on goal achievement can block out pleasures, insights and creativity of the present moment.
January 10, 2015 at 12:42 | Unregistered Commentermichael
michael:

One of my most long-standing goals is to succeed in living in the moment.
January 10, 2015 at 18:47 | Registered CommenterMark Forster
@Mark:

many people advocate it, but few approaches tell you how to get into the moment or how to deal with what you find there. Eckhart Tolle is a big advocate but for me doesn't really give us a process. This woman comes close but has too much Buudhist trappings for my taste http://www.tarabrach.com/
January 11, 2015 at 17:51 | Unregistered Commentermichael
michael:

Thanks for your reply, but I was actually trying to "highlight the paradox between having goals and being in the moment".
January 11, 2015 at 21:17 | Registered CommenterMark Forster
"It is how you act, not what you think, that will determine your success. It is how you think, not what you do, that will determine your happiness."
— Michael Masterson
January 12, 2015 at 16:46 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
michael wrote:
<< few approaches tell you how to get into the moment or how to deal with what you find there >>

Isn't that what Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's work on Flow is all about?

http://www.ted.com/talks/mihaly_csikszentmihalyi_on_flow?language=en
January 12, 2015 at 17:06 | Registered CommenterSeraphim
Hi Michael B.
The way you get into a state of flow is to become fully engaged with what you are doing. If you have someplace you must be, set an alarm. If it's one of your natural passions, you might want to set an alarm if you have other things you need to do as well. As long as you're fully engaged, you have no sense of time or anything else for that matter. After all, you are actually fully engaged.

My personal record is 30 hours straight doing an oil painting. I begrudgingly relieved myself when necessary but didn't think about eating or sleeping. I let myself go because I had the entire weekend off. For playing instruments, my trance was usually only about 4-6 hours straight if I was playing alone. If if was jamming with others and feeding on their energy, it could be much longer but since the environment has cueing, it's not a total trance. I've done long reading and writing binges also. I don't know how to force it. Either your brain fully engages or it doesn't.

There's nothing to deal with (other than setting an alarm if you must...). Just ride the wave. I wish I knew how to summons it at will. I consider it a gift when it happens because no matter what I'm doing, flow patterns are always 100% satisfying (and sometimes exhilarating). It feels like pure rapture even if you're working hard and nonstop for many, many hours. Just follow your passions. That's where flow lives.
January 12, 2015 at 20:01 | Unregistered Commenterlearning as I go
learning as I go:

I believe your reply was meant for michael.
January 13, 2015 at 0:20 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
Hi Michael B.
I apologize.
January 13, 2015 at 1:35 | Unregistered Commenterlearning as I go
@mark: <<"highlight the paradox between having goals and being in the moment". >>

I believe you have read War and Peace? You may recall that Pierre Bezukhov has to lose all expectation of personal gratification and goal achievement before he is able to live in the here and now.
January 23, 2015 at 10:17 | Unregistered Commentermichael
..."He experienced the feeling of a man who has found what he was seeking under his own feet, while he had been straining his eyes looking far away from himself. All his life he had looked off somewhere, above the heads of the people around him, yet there was no need to strain his eyes, but only to look right in front of him."

- http://www.gutenberg.org/files/2600/2600-h/2600-h.htm chapter 12
January 23, 2015 at 10:48 | Unregistered Commentermichael
michael:

<< You may recall that Pierre Bezukhov has to lose all expectation of personal gratification... >>

That would be apart from marrying the woman he has loved hopelessly for years, would it? Here's four chapters further on when he unexpectedly meets (and at first doesn't recognize) Natasha at Princess Maria's:

"Pierre's confusion had now almost vanished, but at the same time he felt that his freedom had also completely gone. He felt that there was now a judge of his every word and action whose judgment mattered more to him than that of all the rest of the world. As he spoke now he was considering what impression his words would make on Natasha. He did not purposely say things to please her, but whatever he was saying he regarded from her standpoint. "

Throughout the book, Pierre's idealistic revelations always collapse when exposed to real life. He still gets the girl though!
January 23, 2015 at 14:10 | Registered CommenterMark Forster
“As valuable as common sense can be, sometimes it doesn’t lead to the best solutions, and it’s the more non-obvious things that work.”
— Dr. Tim Wilson
May 24, 2015 at 5:36 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
Love that one ! "Plans are nothing; but planning is everything."
— Dwight D. Eisenhower" I absolutly agree.... But I may add vision is crucial too.
May 24, 2015 at 13:45 | Unregistered CommenterJupiter
Jupiter:

"But I may add vision is crucial too"

... Agreed.
May 24, 2015 at 16:35 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
"Shhh. My common sense is tingling."

--- Deadpool
May 26, 2015 at 5:03 | Registered Commenternuntym
“Psychology is important to everything you want to accomplish in life. On a scale of one to ten, the importance of psychology is a solid ten.”
— Scott Adams, How to Fail At Almost Everything and Still Win Big, Creator of Dilbert
May 26, 2015 at 8:55 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
“As to methods there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson
March 12, 2016 at 3:47 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
"There's no such thing as willpower, just responding to different incentives."
— Daniel Reeves
March 12, 2016 at 3:57 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
"Ideals are like the stars. We never reach them, buty we set our course by thern."
-- poster in high school English room
March 12, 2016 at 14:55 | Registered CommenterCricket
From Mark's "To Think About":

"If people knew how hard I worked to achieve my mastery, it wouldn’t seem so wonderful after all."
— Michelangelo
October 5, 2016 at 8:49 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
Michael B:

I'm glad someone reads it!
October 5, 2016 at 10:20 | Registered CommenterMark Forster
Mark, Your 'To Think About' on the home page is one of my favourite bits of the site! I check it every visit to see if there's a new one.

One of my favourite quotes (although perhaps not profound) is:

Which is worse, ignorance or apathy?
I don't know and I don't care".
October 5, 2016 at 20:27 | Unregistered CommenterMargaret1
Mark:

I tend to read the site on my phone which involves a lot of "pinching to expand" and scrolling around from a bird's-eye view. From this elevated view the "To Think About" section has a unique blocky shape to it depending on the content. Later, as I'm scrolling around 30,000 feet up I just check to see if the shape has changed. If so, new quote!
October 5, 2016 at 20:42 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
Margaret:

"One of my favourite quotes (although perhaps not profound) is:

'Which is worse, ignorance or apathy? I don't know and I don't care.'

I don't know if it's a profound quote, but who cares! ; )
October 5, 2016 at 21:00 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
From Mark's "To Think About":

"If you repeated today every day for the next year, realistically, where would you end up?
— Benjamin P. Hardy
October 29, 2016 at 12:20 | Unregistered CommenterMichael B.
"What comes first? The clock or the compass?"
— Anonymous
November 1, 2016 at 17:22 | Registered CommenterMichael B.
"The more you reject a task the more resistance will build up against it." — Mark Forster
November 1, 2016 at 22:40 | Unregistered CommenterDjorn
From Mark's "To Think About":

"Knowing and not doing is the same as not knowing.
— Peter Sage
January 27, 2017 at 3:20 | Registered CommenterMichael B.