James Altucher, a man I've never met and likely never will, just changed my life for the better -- again.
For those who aren't familiar, Altucher, among other things, is the author of Choose Yourself, which is probably one of the most practical, accessible, and useful "self-help" books ever written. He also regularly contributes blog posts and articles on his website, as well as on Quora and Medium. And he has a great podcast.
I've been enjoying and benefiting from Altucher's work for a couple years or so, but, until this morning, I hadn't read any of his articles in a few months. Life has been unusually hectic lately, what with a visit home for the holidays, moving to a new town, getting a new puppy, and hiring and training two new employees at work.
Taken at face value, none of that that sounds particularly noteworthy, but to me, they have signaled near-complete disruption. Everything has changed, from where I go grocery shopping to how I spend my time at work to how much (how little, actually) I've been sleeping to how much dog pee I have to clean up off the floor.
All these changes have converged on my life and taken a taken a swift and hard toll on my well-being. I'm a person who needs a fair amount of maintenance, upkeep, and recharge time in order to be well; and since I haven't been able to maintain, keep up with myself, or take the time to recharge, I have not been especially well.
What does that mean? It means I've been anxious, angry, and frazzled more often than not, which, in turn, means that I've been lousy company, both to others and to myself. It's no fun, no good, and completely unsustainable when you can't stand yourself. It's a pathway to destruction and misery.
I've traveled that path before, and I want no part of it again.
What I lost sight of is the fact that I can do things -- simple, quick, and easy things -- that cultivate health and happiness in my life. Moreover, I lost sight of the fact that the linchpin of my happiness is my relationship with myself.
James Altucher's work wasn't my introduction to that lesson, and his work isn't my sole means of remembering and practicing it; but that does not diminish the fact that his work has been and continues to be of profound use to me -- just like it was this morning with his latest article.
Thank you, James.