For the past few years, I have set a one-word theme. A theme is different from a goal in that it has no ending. There’s no number attached to it and no way to reach it. So what’s the point of a theme?
The point of a theme is to make you happy. Goals can’t do that. You set them, you feel bad until you hit them, and, when you do, you celebrate for a moment, and then they disappear. You set a new goal, and the cycle of incompleteness restarts.
A theme gives you an achievable, meaningful, daily standard you can live up to.
If you go to bed knowing you have acted in line with your theme, you will feel happy.
Good themes are verbs and nouns at the same time. “Focus,” “Love,” and, my pick for 2020, the word Empty Your Cup has been based on from the beginning, “Balance.”
With a theme, all you have to do is ask one question: Is this aligned with my theme?
There’s a clear answer, yes or no, for every thought you have, decision you make, and action you take. Align more with your theme, and you’ll go to bed happier. If you fall off the wagon, no biggie, you can get back on it any time.
Themes support goals in that they reduce the pressure they create. At the same time, they replace the need for your goals to make you happy. Using both makes for a winning combination.
I’ve written before about the differences between themes and goals, but, to start this year, I thought I’d explain how to pick a theme properly. In today’s post, I did:
In other news, I have decided what to do with Empty Your Cup right now: Nothing. It stays as it is - free and infrequent.
I already have three major projects that I’m working on each week (Medium, Four Minute Books, Better Marketing), and I simply don’t want to add more recurring work at this time. I do love the daily format, the idea of a book, and the potential for a paid newsletter, but all of these are something I’ll have to revisit in the future.
In the meantime, I’ll share my best ideas when I have them, and hope they add value to your life in the same Bruce Lee approach to life as before. I think a one-word theme certainly will. Especially if the theme you choose is “Balance.”
As always, reading the article is free. If you enjoy it, you can add up to 50 claps and share it with a friend. 👏🏻