“He not busy being born is busy dying.” Bob Dylan sings this in It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding). This song takes me back to that pivotal year in my development (as a person and as a hockey player) when I moved out West to the middle of Montana after high school, chasing mountainous dreams and embarking on this path that I still walk to this day, some thirteen years later. Still chasing that puck. Still chasing that elusive destiny.
We all experience our own lives through our own lens, through our own perspective. We get caught up in it, engulfed by it, and that is who we become, and that is who we are. But behind that veil of day to day motion and commotion, there exists an invisible vein that connects all of us on a much deeper level than anything physical or mental. I contest that it exists on a metaphysical level. It is something spiritual. Something vibrational. Something magic. It's something that I feel and have always felt, and I can only assume that other people in the world feel it too. It's that connectivity between human beings that transcends all other emotions, and exposes itself in the most human form: love.
Thoughts run rampant `round the skull, day in and day out, during a hockey season. The weeks fly by. We practice and we play. We rest for a day, and then we are right back at it. We are here now, right in the thick of things. It's approaching mid-January, and we are well into the season. But we are far from close to that end goal, that prize waiting at the end, that elusive trophy, that shining silver brilliance.
I want to tell you a story about manifesting your own reality. The story dives right into dream chasing and striving for excellence, as expected. The story also involves a nutritional supplement company called Onnit Labs, which I am now involved with, since I officially became sponsored by them earlier this year. But before we start, I want you to know that I am invested in this company, I am promoting this company, and I have financial interest in this company. I believe in this company. I used these products before any talks of sponsorship. I believe in their products and supplements, and I use them every day. I wouldn't be affiliated with them if I didn't. And if I didn't, I sure as hell wouldn't be writing about them.
I am wearing my lucky black suit today with my lucky black tie that has different sized circles on it. I hope it brings me luck today. I think for a moment about last game; yes, I played pretty damn good that game, and yes, I was wearing this same lucky outfit. And then everything slows. That's all it takes to stop worrying and fussing about “what if's” and “what have you's”. I take a deep breath as I hang my jacket in my locker, and I know it and embrace it: today is going to be a good day, a good game, a safe game, a lucky game, a fun game, my game. I keep pumping positive affirmations into my brain. I'm going to be an impact player today. I will fight today. I will score today. I will be my very best today. I will be excellent.
My alarm clock has a hissy fit, beeping and vibrating—shrieking; as soft rays of sunlight pour through tiny slits in the blinds that cover the window. My own tiny slits softly open. I look around the room, and see my cat, left paw twitching rhythmically, as he dreams of great mice hunts and pastoral adventures. Everything feels pretty good. The body isn't too sore. My head is clear. I feel good. I feel positive. I feel happy.
As my feet hit the floor, I say aloud, “Thank you.” And I mean it too. And then I say, “I'm going to be excellent today.” And I mean that too. I read The Secret once and it told me that I can manifest my own reality through my thoughts and actions. I suppose that is true, and so I try to think positive thoughts, and do the right things that put me on the right path to accomplishing my goals. Then I repeat this. Do this every day, and maybe somewhere along the line the manifestation will take place. I see it more as a slow and methodical chipping away at resistance that holds you back from your true potential. Chip away every single day. Dig deeper and deeper, and pick up momentum. And at some point it will happen. You sculpt your own destiny. You will reach your destination, and you will achieve your goal. At least that's what we all hope for. And you have to believe it with all your heart for it to happen. You can't tiptoe along the fence in matters of destiny and dream chasing. You must dive head first into that lush green pasture of dreams just on the other side of the fence, and though you can't see it, you have to believe it is there, and your landing will be soft, and just, and perfect.
It seems that it is not only athletic folk who deal with maintaining consistency and the pursuit of excellence. I've received emails from many different people from many different walks of life, telling me how these articles on excellence have affected them. There is certainly a common vein that exists in all of us. We want to excel. We want to be great. But no one ever tells us how. I truly believe that each of us has our own path to greatness, and it is impossible for anyone else to understand it. We can begin to grasp the idea or the notion, or see the accolades of our peers and appreciate those accomplishments, but we don't get to see what's at the true core of someone else. And we don't get to gauge how different or similar our thoughts and ambitions are.
I think I'm on to something. Has anyone else tried these magic words?
“I'm going to be excellent today.”
I've been saying this to myself pretty much all day, every day for the past week. I've come to the conclusion that they are truly magic words. I say it before bed, and right when I wake up, and on the way to the rink, and in between drills, and any time the Doubt Demon makes an appearance. That's when I say it with the most authority. Any time the Doubt Demon breaks through that dimensional barrier and shows his fangs and claws, I now stand firm, and announce my excellence. I won't let that wretched worm influence me anymore. I'm stronger now. My words are stronger now. My words have magic. So do yours. There is excellence brewing, and no room for negativity or second-guessing.