Aphorisms

Aphorisms. I'm not sure what it is about them - but I think I do better with adopting them as resolutions than I do adopting actual resolutions.

 Maybe it's that they're often just more approachable than resolutions? SMART goals are intimidating. If you fail at a SMART goal, well... You have no one to blame but yourself. But aphorisms give the room to fail. They're aspirational and ambitious - the kind of thing Mr. Rogers or Bob Ross would encourage us to consider without being too pushy, and without the judgement or disappointment if we misstep. 

Over the years, I've collected various aphorisms as a kind of recipe for my professional life (though they often also extend beyond the professional.)

Each year I try to add some new ones but with 2024 around the corner, I've not yet come across anything new that has shaken my perspective the way the ones below have. So I'm taking suggestions!

If, after reading the list below, you have an aphorism, observation, maxim, adage, saying, or truism - something that you feel belongs on my list, please send it my way. Here's to 2024!

  • There's never a good time, but tomorrow is worse.
  • Getting ideas down on paper helps refine.
  • It's easier to offer help than asking for it. It's even harder to accept it.
  • Appreciation needs time and awareness.
  • Be for someone else the thing you need yourself.
  • Splashes are easy in still water, but far-reaching ripples in moving waters requires continuous energy.
  • Reading keeps you from reinventing wheels.
  • Defensiveness obscures learning.
  • Earn the right to criticize.
  • Embrace failures with enthusiasm.
  • Vulnerability makes it ok to be yourself.
  • Show you are listening by asking good follow-up questions.
  • The thing you're worried about is a thing to voice - especially if you're worried about voicing it.
  • Perfectionism is procrastination.
  • Being right doesn't excuse you from improving.
  • Encourage with a smile and a laugh.

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