Thursday, November 17, 2011

Step Into Your Life - Lessons learned from Aron Ralston

Live with Joy

Today we had the opportunity to see Aron Ralston speak, and even if you have not seen the film 127 Hours (I have not) this is an incredible story, and an ongoing journey to a richer life with many lessons and inspirations that came out of this. These are the things that stuck with me.

  1. When you get into trouble, STOP
    1. Stop
    1. Think
    2. Observe, Consider your Options
    3. Plan
  2. "I am in the situation I created".  Take ownership of your decisions.
  3.  Keep hope, even when you need to give up control.  That sounds complicated but there are times when you have to simply trust that it will work out as it was meant to be.  This might seem slightly contradictory to the above, but if along the way you have made the best decisions you can make then you can trust.
  4.  It is not what you do that matters the most. It is who you are. Who you are is about how you love and how you connect with people.  Seek connections that enrich your life and ideally enrich others also.
  5. Moms rule.  We bring you into the world and we will care for you, love you and support you like no-one else.  Appreciate your mothers for who they are too.  Maybe Aron didn't say it exactly like that - but that was the mom message this mother heard.
  6. Live with passion and joy and pure commitment to what you believe in and want to do.  Learn what you are capable of one experience at a time.

The night before he spoke, Aron joined this conference for the gala dinner and evening at the request of the chair.  He was not in a requisite suit and tie and there were one or two people who asked "who is that?" as if this man who was not in the gala uniform had perhaps intruded.  How quickly we judge on exteriors.

What I saw on our packed dance floor filled with energy, people  dancing in couples, in groups, with friends new and old, was a man who had pure joy in the music and movement - his own and those of all around who were fully participating in this experience, his face lit up from within. I was attracted to the spirit of this person, and to others who were enjoying this time just as much, for their unadulterated joy in the freedom and the fun.  Although Aron as the keynote speaker closing three days of conference shared an amazing story with us, what I will remember is how he looked the night before dancing among strangers.  Live with spirit. 

Step into your life and be present for whatever is happening now and be richer for every experience.