The Process

An object or a subject?  Do you react or do you act?

My favorite sports teams to watch are the ones who always seem to pay on the “front foot” and take and aggressive approach.  They force their opponent to react to them and not the other way around.  They approach the game with the mindset of imposing their will and making the game be played the way they want it to be played.

In real life, imposing you will upon others is rather sociopathic.  However, living your life as an actor instead of a reactor should be the goal.

That means being conscious at all times.  Not merely awake, but conscious of your actions and your reasons for acting.  Ensuring your actions are moving you towards the things and the life you want.

This is something I struggle with and continue to struggle with on a daily basis.  Writing helps.  It focuses my mind on the words and the ideas.  Meditation helps.  It trains the mind to focus and be mindful of its surroundings and the thoughts that flow through it.

As with most things life, it is not simply the idea, but also the execution.  That is where I have my work to do.  More accurately it is the work of remembering outcomes are not guaranteed.  In college football circles there is a lot of talk and amusement had at Nick Saban’s idea of The Process.

For those not familiar The Process is the name Saban has given to the work he has done to build good college football programs.  The Process mostly consists of all the same bromides and concentration on fundamentals that all coaches preach and teach.  The thing that really caught my attention is Saban never mentions winning explicitly.  It is either a given and/or expected outcome of continuous work and dedication to the fundamental principles that his style of play is built upon.  The outcomes don’t matter because by doing your job the right way every time makes a potential favorable outcome more likely.  The Process in a way acknowledges something most coaches and athletes (most people in general) do not accept or do not understand that the outcome is the one thing not in your control.  Again, you can do the right thing the right way every time and still lose the game.  Your contentment must be in knowing that you did everything to the best of your ability.

I think that is what the last year of my life has been about.  Me finding my own Process and remembering that outcomes are the one thing I can’t control.  I often find myself stagnating when I worry too much about the outcomes in my life.  This isn’t to say you should do nothing if your life isn’t where you want it to be.  It is that you set goals, figure out the things you need to do to achieve those goals, and then let the goals go.  If you follow your process the goals you reach may not be the ones you originally set, but they will be ones you truly enjoy.

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