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Your Fuse Is Lit, Get On With It!

The day you were born, your fuse was lit. At a predetermined time, on the date written in invisible ink on your forehead, your life will be over. Surprise!

No I've not gone all Emo on you, this is me trying to shake some of you awake! I've been rendered speechless recently [yeah...I know; sorry you missed it] at the glacial pace at which some people are getting around to their hopes, goals and dreams. It's like they have all the time in the world, and they haven't!

Like I said a moment ago, on the day you were born your finite life fuse was lit - and you have no idea how long your fuse is. Obviously I hope you have a long and happy fuse, but I can't guarantee it. Can you? So why fritter away a single moment of this beautiful thing called life? Why are you procrastinating, putting off until tomorrow what can be done - or at least started - today? There isn't a second to lose.


Why am I so ... errr ... animated about this? Because life is short, we all know this. How many tomorrows can any of us truly bank on with any degree of certainty? Do you know what terrifies me most though? That the glacially paced amongst us are running the risk (in 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 years+) of running out of fuse, and having accomplished nothing they had their heart set on. This amounts to a sacrilegious squandering of their unique talent, potential and energy, and I can't just stand by and watch.

For the record, this isn't me trying to light a fire under your backside. This is me trying to light a fire inside your soul. As a small business mentor and personal development life coach, inspiration and motivation are my stock-in-trade, and I'm unleashing some inspiration onto the glacially paced, right here, right now.

You see we look for motivation from third party, extrinsic sources to help encourage, push, spur and cheer lead us when we're challenged. A couple of good examples of extrinsic motivation would be material status symbols, wealth generation, great exam results or rewards of any kind. As a result, motivation tends to be temporary and short lived in nature, requiring more of the same again and again to keep us going. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, I'm just describing the nature of the drive.

Conversely, inspiration is the internal and intrinsic drive within you. Inspiration is what drives you to perform an action, or choose a particular behaviour, because you genuinely enjoy the action/behaviour. Examples of intrinsic inspiration come from anything that makes you happy, achieving your personal goals, staying true to your values, upholding high morals, and having an eagerness to learn. These things can't genuinely be harangued or threatened out of you, they must be fuelled by an intrinsic fire within, which is why I'm drawing your attention to this lit fuse of yours.

The lit fuse metaphor is certainly one of my primary drivers. You've probably noticed? Thoughts of my imaginary lit fuse keep me moving, pushing forwards, forever onwards and upwards. If there's something I want to do, I start now, I don't wait. This isn't to say I get it all completed straight away, because some things take time and sometimes patience is essential, but I don't procrastinate. I don't ever assume I have all the time in the world, because who knows how long my fuse is?

The way I look at it is this, we always have two options: 1) do it/start it now, or 2) gamble and risk never getting it done at all. No it's not morbid, it's realistic, and boy does it get stuff done! If it's something I am serious about achieving before I pop my mortal coil, I start now. I don't stupidly work myself into the ground either, hastening said mortal coil popping. I am careful to eat, sleep, rest and play well, to ensure a sustainable and healthy work-life balance.

In fact, some of those things I've started now (when the thought occurred, or the opportunity presented itself), rather than delayed, are things like meditation, yoga, walking/hiking and reading spiritually enlightening books. Not everything I'm trying to ignite in either myself or you has to entrepreneurial or work related. There are more things in heaven and earth Horatio, etc, etc. There must be equilibrium in all things.


Here's a little assignment, if you fancy it. Sit down in peace and quiet, with all phones and distractions switched off or muted for a short while. Let your mind wander for a while and then start allowing yourself to be honest about the things you want to accomplish; and write them down.

Remember, these things can be anything from wing walking and lion taming (!) to white water rafting or a year of devotion in an ashram. They absolutely do not have to be (all) work related. You are more than what you do. There's so much more to you than how you earn your living. If you and I were to meet for the first time right now, how would you introduce yourself? The enormously high number of people who introduce themselves as: "Hi, I'm Marmaduke, husband of Spudulika, dad to Augustine and Corinthian, and chief cook and bottle washer at The Firkett and Skarpur gastro pub" ...I may have made those names up, but you get the gist?

Scrub away the veneers of how you earn your living, and who you're related to, and really get in touch with who you are and what you want. Repeat this: "Your fuse is lit [state your name], get on with it!" and wait to see what rises to the surface of your consciousness. Whatever it is, write it down and then pursue for all you're worth.

Life's journey is not to arrive at your grave safely, in a well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out and exhausted, shouting: "MAN, WHAT A RIDE!"

So have I lit a fire within your soul? I do hope so. If you'd like to discuss this with me in more detail, please feel free to get in touch, I'd love to hear from you. In the meantime however, come on, your fuse is lit - get on with it!


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