The understanding that has most improved my life in the last five years dramatically, is recognizing the importance of others in not only changing the world, but in enjoying it.
By nature I am an introvert. After college, in my career, my success in the world was the product of my insights and imagination and thinking, so I inhabited the world of ideas far more than I did the world of people. The more and better ideas I came up with, the more success I achieved.
So it came as a surprise relatively late in life, that if you want to change the world, you have to enroll others in your plans and vision. Not only that, but the immense pleasure and satisfactions that can be derived from focusing on others, and the surprising discovery that the more I gave to others – which I’d always done – the more the universe gave me back in return.
Whereas in the past when I went outside and encountered others, I would invariably be lost in thought – now I am solely focused not inwardly, on my ideas, but outwardly, on connecting with others. First, whenever possible, connect with others. Second, with enthusiasm, strive always to create fun and delight for others. And third, lean into each moment and encounter expecting magic – or miracles.
Now I so eagerly look forward each day, wondering what magic I’ll create encountering others, that I can scarcely contain myself. The number of remarkable people and serendipities and successes that have come into my life since I adopted this awareness of others – which quickly developed into a reflexive habit of directing my attention solely on them when I am not alone – has been nothing short of astonishing.