Dave Lukas - Lessons for Hannah
225: Lessons for Hannah - The 5 Principles to Thrive, Succeed, and Live Your Best Life
Hello Misfit Nation! Welcome to another edition of "Lessons for Hannah!"
In November of 2016, we introduced a new format that we are putting alongside our regular episodes called “Lessons for Hannah.” Hannah is my daughter and one of the main inspirations for the Misfit Entrepreneur. I wanted to have a place where she could go and learn from her daddy and his Misfit friends throughout her life….even after I am gone. If you haven’t listened to the first episode of "Lessons for Hannah," I urge you to as it gives some more background and tells the amazing story of how Hannah came to be in our lives.
"Lessons for Hannah" are short, very useful, and sometimes comical lessons, that I have learned which I want to share with you and give to Hannah to help in your lives. Because I want Hannah to have these for her life, I’m going to speak as though I am talking directly to her. These episodes are a lot of fun and if you think there is a lesson that we should include in these episodes, please don’t hesitate to send it over to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to share it.
This week’s Lesson for Hannah
I want share with you an abbreviated version of a talk I have been doing called “The 5 Principles to Thrive, Succeed, and Live Your Best Life.” It is resonating greatly right now during the pandemic, but the principles are timeless.
I want to start by asking you and anyone listening a question. And that is, “Do you know what chances of being alive are? Let me explain. The chances of you being alive are the same as if 2.5 million people got together, roughly the population of a city the size of Chicago or San Diego, to play a game of dice, each person with a TRILLION sided dice, and they all roll the dice and come up with the exact same number. I’m going to let that sink for a second.
To put it numerically, your chances of being born are 1 in 4 TRILLION.
There is no way around it – you are a miracle it.
I share this for perspective. No matter what your circumstances, no matter who you are, no matter where you are in your life right now, you are a miracle. The fact that you are here means that trillions of others that could have been will never exist. Literally, one step in the wrong direction on a battlefield in history and you don’t exist. One rock in space hits another a different way – and someone else is in your place.
You are one of the greatest miracles ever created. Cherish this fact.
And that brings me to principle #1: Keep Perspective.
You must keep perspective in your life. No matter what is happening, good or bad, right or wrong – you will do well to keep yourself grounded and maintain perspective.
Having good perspective will not only help you to think better and make better decisions, but it will also give you the ability to find happiness at any point in your life.
There are always things to be grateful for and to live for and into our lives…Now, that doesn’t mean we don’t have tough times in our lives. We all do. Right now, the whole world is turned upside and will be potentially changed forever creating some challenging time.
But when these times come, it is very important for all us to control what can be controlled and let the rest go.
Above all else, there is one thing we can control that makes the most difference in our lives – and that is our mindset and our conditioning. You see. we have two minds. We have a conscious mind that we are “aware” of… It is the mind that you use when you “think” to do something. But, we have another much more powerful mind…the subconscious mind. This is the part of your brain the runs you without you even knowing. Think about it – how much do you “think” to throw a ball, drive a car, brush your teeth. You don’t – you just do it.
The subconscious is the most powerful part of our mind and the conditioning it has received determines much of our thinking, decisions, and how we operate in life. Have you ever asked yourself or wondered, “Where do my thoughts come from?” or ever made a decision where you said afterward, “Why did I do that?”
You did it because it was the automatic response your subconscious was conditioned to….As powerful as it is, it is actually not that smart in that it doesn’t decide if the conditioning it has received is truly the best thing for you or not. It just follows the programming.
This is why a person’s mind can actually be their biggest obstacle to success – because whatever your subconscious is programmed to is where you end up.
The key is to understand this and use this awareness to stop debilitating conditioning and reprogram your mind with the way you want to think and the thoughts you want to have.
And that is Principle #2: Learn to control your mindset and conditioning.
Principle #3 is short and quick. You must balance faith and optimism. The best example of this is a story I’ve shared before about Vice Admiral James Stockdale, who was a PO in Vietnam for about 7 years. I urge you to go read his story and his interview by Jim Collins. Essentially, the biggest lesson he shared is “You must never confuse faith that you will prevail in the end—which you can never afford to lose-- with the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be.”
You must always balance faith and optimism and come to grips with reality. If you develop the ability to do this, you can make it through anything. Remember, as I started with, you are a miracle and you are here because you were destined to be here. Things are happening as they are supposed to. And you get to choose how you respond and react to them.
And that brings me to Principle #4, which you taught me, Hannah. Our journey to become a family is filled with twists, turns, and miracles. You can go listen to the first Lessons for Hannah for the full story. But it came down to just a few things. One small choice, one tiny checkbox made the difference for us to find you. The adoption agency, at the time only worked with only 1 orphanage directly in all of China And no one in the world new about you but us because of checking that one box and the agency working with that one orphanage. Third, you were mis-diagnosed and should have been considered a “healthy child,” which means we would never have had know about you as it was a different program.
And here is what I learned from our journey. Everything that happened to the point where we became a family, had to happen exactly as it did – Good and Bad. And it taught me to have no regrets.
Aside from the chances of you being alive, everything that had to happen to get you to this point right now where I am speaking to you and you are getting this message had to happen exactly as it did.
And I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t change any of it. Oh, that doesn’t mean I don’t learn from it and given the chance to do things again, wouldn’t apply what I’ve learned. I just don’t regret it.
And that brings me to principle #4 which is really a couple of principles in one, but they fit together.
Everything is a choice. Choose wisely. Do not let yourself be saddled by regret from your choices. Learn from them and become better…
And when you do that. When you combine everything I’ve shared in this episode.
When you put all this to work for yourself, you will find yourself practicing Principle #5.
You will become the best version of yourself – a constant work in progress no doubt, but a light to those around you and someone they can count on to guide the way and prevail no matter what happens
You will be able to give to this world and those around in ways you never dreamed of and make a much bigger impact that you ever thought was possible. You will be able to thrive, succeed, and live your best life.
Principle #5 is be the light you were meant to be in this world. You have so much more in you than you know. Live into it.
I’ll leave you with this quote from the great Jim Rohn:
“The big challenge is to become all that you have the possibility of becoming. You cannot believe what it does to the human spirit to maximize your human potential and stretch yourself to the limit.”
Hannah, and anyone listening I challenge you to use these 5 principles to maximize your potential and stretch yourself to the limit.
I love you,
Be the light you were meant to be in this world. You have so much more in you than you know. Live into it.
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