Today we’ll share some words of wisdom from author and philosopher, the late great, Robert Pirsig, on how to have a fulfilled life.
Click the player to listen to this episode of The BIGG Success Show Podcast. Below is a summary.
Robert Pirsig is best known for the book: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. Zen was published in 1974, after being rejected by 121 publishing houses, and quickly became a best-seller.
The book isn’t about zen, or motorcycles. It’s about high-quality engagement with others which he calls, “the secret to a fulfilled life.”
We came across an article about him that had some quotes from his works that struck a chord with us as they embody the entrepreneurial mindset that we promote all the time here at BIGG Success.
Let’s go to the Professor’s whiteboard for: 4 keys to living a fulfilled life…
Key 1: Lift up others to be lifted up
“Any effort that has self-glorification as its final endpoint is bound to end in disaster.” – Robert Pirsig
It reminds us of the old saying, “It’s amazing how much gets accomplished when no one cares who gets the credit.”
Seek first to glorify others and you’ll be amazed at how much glory you get.
Key 2: Understand whether you’re working on a puzzle or a mystery
“The world comes to us in an endless stream of puzzle pieces that we would like to think all fit together somehow, but that in fact never do.” – Robert Pirsig
We push back on this quote. Sometimes life’s not throwing a puzzle with pieces. You’re uncovering clues. And you’re trying to solve a mystery.
We talk about the difference between puzzles and mysteries when it comes to money with podcast episode #948. (Link in this episode’s show notes.) But the same identifiers apply to any situation.
Here’s how to know the difference between the two…
A puzzle has a fixed solution.
A mystery has a moving solution.
For example, making a recipe is a puzzle. This ingredient goes with that ingredient. But starting a business – even a simple, part-time one, is a mystery.
If you’re trying to solve a puzzle that’s actually a mystery, you’ll never solve the puzzle. It’s a waste of precious time, talent, energy and other resources.
Key 3: Change the world from the inside out
“The place to improve the world is first in one’s own heart and head and hands, and then work outward from there.” – Robert Pirsig
We love this quote. BIGG success starts from within. It’s defined by your vision of the mark you want to leave on the world and your mission, which maps out who you want to serve.
When you focus on these things, you get closer to fulfilling your purpose.
We talk more about this in Podcast episode #1005 Your Arena of Service.
Key 4: Find joy in the journey, not just the destination
“Mountains should be climbed with as little effort as possible and without desire. The reality of your own nature should determine the speed. If you become restless, speed up. If you become winded, slow down. You climb the mountain in an equilibrium between restlessness and exhaustion. Then, when you are no longer thinking ahead, each footstep isn’t just a means to an end but a unique event in itself. This leaf has jagged edges. This rock looks loose. From this place the snow is less visible, even though closer. These are things you should notice anyway. To live only for some future goal is shallow. It’s the sides of the mountain that sustain life, not the top. Here’s where things grow.” – Robert Pirsig
He says this so well, we can summarize his entire quote with one short sentence: Take life a step at a time and enjoy each one.
Make the most of each day, cherish your relationships, and put others first for a fulfilled life. It leads to BIGG success!
George “The Professor” & Mary-Lynn
Co-Founders, BIGG Success
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