#1066 The Mountain-Races of Life

And How to Win Them

In our last couple +1s, we chatted about a couple of the astonishing stats on the science of how movement Optimizes our sense of well-being and joy.

Thank you, Kelly McGonigal for writing The Joy of Movement—which is now our go-to Movement book on the science of “How Exercise Helps Us Find Happiness, Hope, Connection, and Courage.”

Kelly tells us that, as she was writing the book, she had a floor-to-ceiling corkboard wall on which she put ideas and notes and inspiring pictures from her research.

I thought that was a brilliant idea and I’m thinking about making one of my office walls all corkboard as well. In the meantime, I started taping up pictures and notes.

I have this picture of the group of Optimizers with whom I finished the Spartan Race up there. And this one of me helping Alexandra doing the monkey bars. And a bunch of others from this collection of epic Optimizers.

Then I have some inspiring notes from our members taped up there. And the note Mister Rogers wrote to himself regarding the challenges of creating (recall: “the tortures of the damned”!).

Then I taped up a picture of the right-front tire guy.

And that gets us one step closer to the point of Today’s +1.

As I was soaking up the energy-goodness from my new array of taped-up-inspiration, I was reflecting on that tire guy and my commitment to being the guy ripping off YOUR right-front tire.

Then I thought of David Brooks and his new book The Second Mountain and I had one of those nice little epiphany moments.

That right-front-tire-guy?

He’s the PERFECT metaphor for the point David’s trying to make in his book.

As he says: “The first mountain is about building up the ego and defining the self, the second mountain is about shedding the ego and losing the self. If the first mountain is about acquisition, the second mountain is about contribution. If the first mountain is elitist—moving up—the second mountain is egalitarian—planting yourself amid those in need, and walking arm in arm with them.

In short:

The first mountain is, basically, all about YOU. You’re the star of the show.

You’re the race car driver.

The second mountain is, basically, all about OTHERS. You’re willing to take the position in the pit stop crew and primarily support others.

You’re the right-front-tire guy (or gal).

Obviously it’s never either/or and we’re always playing both roles—giving support and receiving support.

AND…

There’s something so incredibly liberating about being willing to step back and make our primary focus HELPING OTHERS rather than trying to win our own race.

And… That’s Today’s +1.

If you feel so inspired, let’s put on that awesome, anonymous, red (!) uniform and get to work with one goal in mind: How can we help others win THEIR races Today?

Let’s actually spend a moment getting tactical about it.

Pick three people.

What’s ONE thing you can do for each of them? Doesn’t need to be some huge thing. Even just a word of encouragement or a hug and an “I LOVE you!!” will do.

Let’s just be intentional about it.

Person #1: ______________________ → Thing #1: __________________________
Person #2 ______________________ → Thing #2: __________________________
Person #3: ______________________ → Thing #3: __________________________

I can feel my Love engines revving just thinking about that!! (Seriously. Misters went on in Ojai as I thought of my Big 3. 😍 )

Let’s make Today awesome by making it awesome for others.

TODAY.

(And tomorrow. And…)

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