Tomorrow is Independence Day, my absolute, all-time favorite Holiday. It is also my most cherished metaphor, that of freedom and transformation.
Independence Day is about the creation of a new world, one very different from the world that came before it. It is about transformation, literally breaking through to a higher level, one never before witnessed on Earth.
It is about leaving the old ways, the old systems, and the old beliefs behind and establishing new ones.
A lot of people look to the Constitution as the document on which America was built, and there is some truth to that. Because the Supreme Court continues to settle disputes over the Constitution, and mostly the Bill of Rights, it gets a lot of attention.
But for me, America is the Declaration and the words that Adams prodded Jefferson to write. America is about transformation, about freeing yourself:
“When in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them to another . . .”
From whom or from what is it necessary that you free yourself? What bands do you need to “dissolve?” (I love Jefferson’s turn of a phrase. Can’t you actually see the bands dissolving?)
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” Are these Rights self-evident? (capitalized, as Jefferson wrote the word)
- Your life is yours alone to live. It is yours free and clear, unencumbered by any mortgage to anyone. You determine what you do with your life, what your greater purpose is, what is meaningful to you, and what contribution you are here to make.
- Liberty means freedom. The way Jefferson used the word it meant self-determination. You control your own life. No one has the right to exercise control over you, to make decisions for you. This ideal drew—and draws—people to the idea of America, especially from places where there is a soul-crushing dearth of Liberty, and self-determination means little.
- Success means different things to different people. Most definitions, however, have Happiness at the core of the definition. For some people, Happiness is simply the pursuit of it.
It’s your life. You do with it what you will. Pursue what makes you happy.
Your Personal Declaration and Transformation
If you aren’t doing what you want to do with your life, change it. This is a short ride with 80 or 90 or 100 trips around the Sun before you get an eviction notice and some part of you is forced to vacate the premises.
Is what you are doing now what you were born to do? Or are you captured by the “bands” that are someone else’s expectations of you? What are the bands you need to dissolve?
Liberty is an unalienable right, and it is there to be exercised. Vigorously. And protected. Vociferously. What is the point of self-determination if you never put it into action? Are the decisions you make your own? Is what you are doing now self-determination?
You decide what success means for you. What is your pursuit? What will bring you happiness?
It may be a long time since you’ve asked and answered these questions for yourself. It may be too long, meaning you’ll need to stretch a little and warm up. Even if your hair is a little gray, you still have time on the clock.
Wherever you are in the World, let other people spend time arguing over Brexit, and Clinton vs. Trump. The outcomes of these kinds of things are important, but they are beyond your control. However important they are, they are not more important than your own personal transformation, setting yourself free from whatever it is that you might have mistakenly allowed to hold you back.
Comment to send me your personal Declaration of Independence, your thoughts, your stories, and your ideas. It’s easy to see how others have given up their right to self-determination, so send this to someone you believe needs to answer the questions in this newsletter. They can join us here every Sunday by going pointing their web browser to hitp://www.thesalesblog.com.
Do good work this week, and I’ll see you back here next Sunday!
P.S. If you want to know one of my secrets to productivity, it’s the GTD Methodology. Go here to subscribe to my In the Arena podcast and listen to my interview with GTD creator and productivity legend, David Allen.