Posts Tagged ‘Inspiration’

Thankyou Randy…honour your childhood dreams

July 26, 2008
Randy Pausch and wife Jai

Randy Pausch and wife Jai

Randy Pausch died yesterday at 47 of pancreatic cancer. But he died having spent his last months living a huge life. Through his “Last Lecture” which went on to become a book, he touched millions of lives. He wanted to leave a message for his children, but he also inspired the rest of us.

How can his message make a difference in your working life?

  • Your work is an integral part of your life. Randy loved teaching and used his lecture at work to change people’s lives. He saw the potential in people, and believed they could achieve far more than they themselves believed. You can achieve far more than you think. You just need to find what you really want to do and then aim for it.
  • What were your childhood dreams? Are they forgotten? Did you lose your passion for life along the road of working slog? Well, it’s time to resurrect those dreams. You are still alive, and every day you can get one step closer to achieving what you want in life.
  • Randy believed in making memories and having experiences with his children and his wife. He didn’t sweat the small stuff but spent his last months ensuring that he was remembered for having fun. One of the things I do several times a year is print out my photos and stick them on coloured card in a folder. If there are not enough photos of the year so far, I know I am not having enough experiences. Are you making memories? Are you having enough fun? This is one of his quotes “Never underestimate the importance of having fun. I’m dying and I’m having fun. And I’m going to keep having fun every day because there’s no other way to play it.”
  • If you knew you had only a few months to live, what would you do? It is an intellectual exercise for us, but Randy lived these thoughts and chose to change the world with his speech. Do you want to get to the end of your life with regrets on what you didn’t do with your life? The time is now. The place is now. Get on with it. Write down your list of what you would love to do, and start ticking things off it.
  • Decide how you will achieve it, stop making excuses and do it. You can start with the small goals, maybe you want to learn to dance, or make pottery – enroll in a class. Maybe you want to travel the world – go and get some travel books from the library, some national geographic magazines from the charity shop and inspire yourself! Maybe you hate your job – well, make a plan and get out of it. The only thing limiting you, is you.

Thank you Randy. You helped us all to focus on what is truly important in life.

 Related Posts:
The Last Lecture on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ji5_MqicxSo
My video review of “The Last Lecture” – the book http://joannapenn.com/2008/07/14/the-last-lecture-for-much-needed-inspiration/
Article announcing he had died http://www.usatoday.com/news/education/2008-07-25-pausch-obit_N.htm
Article about the effect he had on others http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/randy-pausch-the-dying-man-who-taught-america-how-to-live-800182.html
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The Last Lecture: for much needed inspiration

July 14, 2008

This is a video review of “The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. The book was written after the Last Lecture itself which can also be seen on YouTube.
If you are having a bad day, and you need some inspiration – this book is just what you need.

Some of the best bits for me were:

  • There are 2 types of families – those who need a dictionary to get through dinner, and those who don’t
  • If you have a question, find the answer
  • On self esteem – give them something they can’t do, they work hard until they find they can do it – Repeat.
  • Brick walls are there for a reason. They give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Once you get over them, it can be helpful to tell others how you did it.
  • Time must be explicitly managed, like money.
  • You can always change your plan, but only if you have one.
  • Give yourself permission to dream. Fuel your kids dreams.
  • Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted.
  • Failure is not just acceptable, it’s often essential.
  • The First Penguin award: given to those who are first in the water with their ideas. There might be predators, but they take the risk and get out there.
  • All you have to do is ask.
  • Take your kids on crazy experiences – it’s about time with you, doing things and building memories.
  • Put your own oxygen mask on before helping others – sort out your own problems first.

You can visit Randy’s homepage here http://download.srv.cs.cmu.edu/~pausch/
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Picasso: Lessons for a working life

July 11, 2008

Picasso in thoughtI went to the Picasso exhibition at Brisbane Modern Art Gallery last week. It was an exhibition of lesser known drawings, prints and some of his own personal collection of paintings as well as photos of him in his various studios.
http://www.qag.qld.gov.au/exhibitions/current/picasso_and_his_collection

It was a welcome cultural fix but I also learnt some lessons that can influence our working lives.

  • You don’t have to be perfect. Not everything Picasso did was a masterpiece. There were sketches and doodles displayed that he could have dashed off in no time at all when he was clearly just playing. We should be more like this. Don’t expect everything you do to be a masterpiece first time. Don’t expect to walk into your perfect job tomorrow. But play…try things out…ask your friends…relax…and in time one of the things you do will be a masterpiece.
  • Be authentic. Many of the pieces Picasso collected were from friends or by friends, people he admired, phases he went through. Each tells of something he saw in them that wasn’t necessarily obvious. Some of the pieces are rough and basic, some of great artistic importance. He just collected what he liked. The sketches were of real people, with bulbous noses, or real stomachs. Naked people with no airbrushing. Sex without the porn. All of these images are authentic and untouched by media worship. Stop trying to be what others want you to be. Stop trying to like what you think others want you to like. Just be authentic. Get to know yourself and investigate the original you. What makes you light up with enthusiasm?
  • Don’t put yourself in a box. You can be many people. Don’t constrain what talents you have. Did you know that Picasso also wrote poetry? He was not just a visual artist. He expressed himself in many ways. You don’t have to define yourself by your job alone.
  • Let inspiration guide you. One of Picasso’s most famous paintings is Guernica, a copy of which is displayed in the United Nations headquarters. He was inspired to paint it after the Nazi bombing of this little Spanish town and it has continued to inspire people with it’s anti-war message. We need to allow ourselves to be moved, and when we are inspired, to act. Don’t let the day in-day out working life kill inspiration and passion. You can still be someone who is moved and who acts powerfully. You are still someone important.

It is necessary to get out of your normal head space sometimes, in order to see beyond your current situation. The lessons we need to learn can sometimes come from surprising places.
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