plan(t) for the best
Dear Why Team members,
I hope this message finds you well and your week off to a great start. This week we explore why it's best to plan for the best.
Why plan for the best? To be at our best, for ourselves and others.
While instinctive fear serves us in the moment, such as swerving to miss a car, or backing away from an angry dog, worry is something different. One of my teachers, Dr. Roger Hall, recently shared with me that worry is anticipatory fear, imagining worst case scenarios in the future. While I believe it's prudent to prepare for the worst, it's counterproductive to..
...plan for it. If we are living in the belief that the worst will happen, it might as well be happening now. People can suffer their entire lives afraid that the future will cause them suffering. Our world is a reflection of our thoughts about it. I often say that planners who plan for the worst are the worst planners. Why? Because they often get what they plan for.
Here is an example: Let's say you are about to take your first cruise across the Atlantic Ocean. You're so excited about the trip. You walk up to the captain and you ask him what is his plan. And he says, "Well it's a big dangerous ocean, we plan to sink. But we have some nice lifeboats, would you like to see them?" Planners who plan for the best, however, are the best planners. It's not plan for the worst, hope for the best. It's plan for the best, prepare for the worst. Preparation is why there are lifeboats, but boarding a ship planning to use them makes for a life filled with sinking feelings. People literally worry themselves to death, thus living out their prophecies. Physically, worry elevates cortisol in our body, reducing the effectiveness of our prefrontal cortex, where effective actions and solutions can be found.
The story of Apollo 13 is a great lesson for all of us. An explosion damages their life support systems. They had every reason to plan for the worst, even throw their hands up, considering more the impossibilities, rather than the possibilities. History has shown, however, that they planned for the best and found the way. Their love for their colleagues, their fellow man, produced courage and showed them the way.
Until we have the will, rarely will we find the way. The will to serve others in the face of adversity, planning for the best, has revealed triumph even in the darkest hours. Plan for the best, plant positive possibilities every day. We truly do reap what we sow. Be the hope and the light, for yourself and others, and you will be more of what the world needs now.
Make it a great week,
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