“To change your life, you have to change the way you think. Behind everything you do, is a thought. Every behavior is motivated by a belief. Every action is promoted by an attitude. Be careful of how you think. Your life is directed by your thoughts!”

- John Wright

John Wright Speaking Video

Posts Tagged: River of Resistance

The Third Obstacle to Your “Unlived Life”







As we continue in the River of Resistance Series, the third obstacle that makes crossing the River of Resistance difficult is our ocean living friend, the crab.  (If you remember from my first blog in the series, you have to use your imagination a little to allow for the metaphor to work here, as we know crabs don’t live in rivers.) It’s pretty easy to get yourself a crab dinner while spending some time on the beach.  Simply tie a piece of chicken or some other similar bait to the end of a long string or cord.  Throw it out in the ocean and wait for the telltale tug.  Pull it in slowly, and you probably have one crab hanging on to the chicken; if you are lucky, you might have another one or two hanging on to the other crab.  The interesting thing about crabs is that when you put a bunch of them in a shallow bucket that they can easily climb out of, they can’t do it.  Why? Because when one is close to getting out of the bucket, his “buddies” pull him back down into the bucket.  Human crabs, the kind that seem to want to “pull” us down and away from the goals that we want to achieve are everywhere.  They can be people close to us, like parents, clergy, teachers, coaches, friends, etc.  Some do it knowingly, while others mean well thinking they are protecting us, but end up being very effective goal-busters.  There is a great song by Buddy Jewell that is a perfect rendition of what we could call the “Crab Song”.  The first four verses are:

I guess it started when I was a kid,

If you said I couldn’t do it I did,

Always had a stubborn streak,

Put a wall in front of me,

And I’ll find a way to get around it,


There was a friend who said I’d never make the team,

A lot of small town talk said I’d never leave,

Ah and you know who you are,

You all played a part,

In pushing me on to my dream,


I wanna thank everyone who ever told me no,

Pack it up and get back home,

It kept me going knowing I would prove them wrong,

Yea I knew it all along,

Without ‘em I might have given up a long time ago, and so,

I wanna thank everyone who ever told me no.


Played my music for a man behind a desk,

He said sorry what you’ve got I just don’t get,

Ah, but here I am today,

Standin’ on this stage,

And I wonder even now if he gets it yet.

Buddy Jewell is where he is today, a famous country western singer, because he didn’t let the “crabs” pull him down.  He actually used their negative thoughts to motivate him to endure and be successful. There are thousands of stories of people who became extraordinarily successful because they overcame the negative attitudes and thoughts of those around them. [Tweet this!]  Crabs are a worthy opponent, and it takes a lot of courage and energy to not let their negative chatter keep us from getting “out of the bucket” and on to the life of our dreams.



One Obstacle to Your “Unlived Life”

The walrus in the way of your dream life






As I shared in my last blog, the River of Resistance is what we must cross, in order to achieve and reach our unlived life.  We are now ready to begin to discuss the obstacles that lurk in this River  that obstruct,  hinder, interfere, or block our progress towards our goals, vision, dreams, or as I like to call it, our most amazing future. 

The Walrus

The first of the big 5 obstacles, is the Walrus.  (It might be important to note, for you very technical readers, that a number of the big 5 obstacles, actually don’t live in rivers, so just imagine for the time being.)

Now, back to the walrus.  The Walrus represents WORK.

When you picture a Walrus, you probably picture a few thousand pounds of beast, sitting pretty inanimately on the beach, not doing much of anything, surrounded by hundreds of his friends, doing just about the same thing, nothing.  To mobilize himself, it takes an immense amount of work.  Or, he doesn’t have to work and can continue to sit, right where he is.

Sometimes in life, it can seem like it takes an immense amount of effort to achieve your goals, and one can almost feel like the Walrus, immobilized by all there is to do.  But one of the most dependable, surefire ways to reach your unlived life is to put your head down, get to work, and go after it.

Another thought about work…“Grit”

There is a school in New York City, called the Riverdale School.  It is one of the city’s most prestigious private schools, a 104 year old elite institution, where tuition starts at $38,500 a year for prekindergarten, and goes up from there.

Angela Duckworth, a Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan, worked with the Riverdale School to develop a set of strengths that according to her research, is especially likely to predict life satisfaction, high achievement, and success in their students.  They call it the “Grit Scale.”

Grit, as defined by Duckworth, is “sticking with things over the very long term until you master them.”

To me, it is a toughness in going after something.  It’s a work ethic of not quitting until you have accomplished what you desire. [Tweet this!]

“Talent is Overrated”

Author Geoff Colvin, who wrote the book, “Talent is Overrated”, says that what separates the best from the rest is not talent; it’s deliberate practice, which is simply work.  He says that hard work consistently beats talent, unless talent consistently works hard.

So, the first step in crossing the River of Resistance, and to reaching your unlived life, is to roll up your sleeves, get to work and go after it.  Don’t be a Walrus…