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  • Writer's pictureRich Honiball

How Are YOU Treating Life?

We are celebrating four days in a row of my daughter getting to school BEFORE the opening bell rings. If you have been following along, this is no small accomplishment! That puts me at my favorite coffee shop before work, enjoying my second (and last) latte of the day, catching up on personal correspondence, I can’t say emails because it also includes texts, Facebook messages, and even a hand-written note.  

Yes, I write those from time to time.

I send out a monthly recap of articles that I’ve read, things I find interesting, some random and some with strong intent. I’ve done this for over five years and the list of recipients has grown to several hundred. Every time I send an update out, I end up hearing back from several folks, interestingly not the same group every month. Some send me a quick “hi", checking in. Others, it provokes a longer conversation, perhaps a longer update, an exchange of ideas, maybe advice sought or offered. 

It helps me to stay connected. It feeds my soul.

A dear friend from Texas reached out to me, wanting to be added to the list. I sent a note back to her and ended it with “how is life treating you”, then added, without thinking, “how are YOU treating life?

How are YOU treating life?

Now I am sitting here, listening to the owner of the coffee shop (also the master baker of the most delicious scones that I am again avoiding today) engage with her team. She is not just going about her tasks, she is engaging with her team, talking about how to change the flavor of coffee by the “length of the pull”. I will admit I am fascinated, a bit distracted listening to her, learning a bit more about coffee but more enjoying the way she is connecting with her team.

I have no idea what motivated me asking “how are YOU treating life” but as I sit here struggling to strike a balance between staying focused on finishing this post, while learning about how the length of the pull impacts the flavor of the coffee, I think it is about taking ownership. Taking responsibility.

Yes, my wife and I are working overtime as parents trying to help my daughter work through her freshman year anxiety, but ultimately, she is taking ownership in how she is treating life and it is encouraging to see her making progress. Most days, my wife fights off the eternal pull to take it easy and pushes herself to work out, to get out and meet with mentors and advisors as she sets up her real estate practice, to take another step forward. This week, I have watched as my team has taken the lead, doubled down and pushed forward on existing projects and new ideas, telling me what they need from me.

Sometimes life is uncontrollable, unpredictable. You can be the try to be the “captain of your fate” and still be hit with a storm that you cannot overcome. Other times, you can walk blindly into success with pure dumb luck. But if you focus more on how YOU treat life and less on how life treats you, that proactive approach can make all the difference in the world.

I warned you, sometimes I send out things that are pretty random. Your thoughts?

Enjoy your day!


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