I have definitely had my share of troubling experiences in life. But don’t worry, I won’t whine about the bumpy roads my life has traveled. My stories are a lot like everyone else’s; relationship problems, troubling times at work (yes, even at Schipul), financial struggles, etc.
I realized that I was extremely unhappy and it was showing, big time. I had a horribly negative attitude towards everyone in my life, including my family. I didn’t want to be around people and they surely didn’t want to be around me.
One day I was in the book store just browsing when I came across a book called Letting Go of Your Bananas by Dr. Daniel T. Drubin. The title grabbed my attention and actually made me laugh. It’s a short paperback, only 119 pages. I like reading those kinds of books so I bought it.
Of course the book is full of motivational, “You can do it!“, type of references. But it’s also insightful and it just spoke to me. By “letting go of your bananas”, the author means letting go of everything negative in your life, anything that limits you from personal growth. On the second page of the book, he writes,
“If we refuse to let go of the things or people that hold us back, life starts to rot and then stink. The only way to go beyond where you are in your life is by being willing to let go of the things, people, habits, and beliefs that keep you where you are instead of where you want to be.”
That spoke volumes to me. As I continued to read the book, I made a list of all of my rotten bananas. They ranged from personal habits to people that I considered to be very good friends. I started working on myself, my attitude, and my life in general. I broke off relationships that brought negativity in my life and focused on ones that were positive. I got a better attitude at work. I even went to counseling and got my personal life under control. Of course my life is far from perfect but I’m definitely on a better path after reading the book.
I’ll leave you with this, from the last chapter of the book, 9 guidelines for taking charge of the rest of your life:
- Think one step ahead and always have a back up plan for whatever you are doing: don’t put all of your plans in one basket. Challenges in life can strengthen your resolve and build your character, so be flexible when the situation calls for resilience and steadfast when an obstacle is in your path.
- Understand and effectively utilize the power of your personal affirmations and self-talk. The two most important words of personal power are “I am”.
- Be childlike in your willingness to accept no as an answer. Be deliberate about what you want and when confronted with a no, dig in and totally invest yourself in the attainment of your goals.
- Live the principles of TELL – Teaching, Earning, Laughing and Learning. When you work toward earning a living as well as earning the admiration and respect of others, you improve your life.
- Always deliver more than you promise. When you live up to your word and then give more of yourself than even expected, you elevate yourself and how others view you.
- When given the choice regarding how to think and behave, always choose limitless over limited. When you think in limitless terms, you expand your potential.
- With a dramatic need for speed, decide to break the speed barrier for changing your life. Comfort is not necessarily your friend.
- Become more purposeful in your thoughts, actions and attitudes. To live a more meaningful life, there is no substitute for purity of purpose.
- Eliminate the eighth day of the week: “Someday”. By procrastinating and putting off until Someday the things that need to be done, you restrict your growth and diminish your personal potential. Do it now.