Dynamic Tension Is the Art
On Valentine’s Day, 2008, I wrote How to Write Intelligently from the Heart. It explored how to create the dynamic tension between structure and expression that makes our writing live on.
We can think and write. We can craft our sentences to be clever. We can make sure that each part is factually, structurally, grammatically correct. But clever and accurate only go so far in satisfying readers. If we want our writing to resonate long after, our words need to come from the heart.
As I read that post today, it leads me to think about the dynamic tension between head and heart that are part of any successful business and any successful life.
In the same way, our work needs to come from the heart.
How to Live and Work Intelligently from the Heart
We can think and plan life. We can think and plan a business. We can build brilliant business strategy and savvy life design. We can make sure we’re on budget, we manage our time, and delivering high ROI that sees to the needs of work, friends, and family. But savvy and brilliant only go so far. If we want build a lasting business inside a meaningful life we need our head hardwired to our heart.
Here are 25 secrets I’ve learned about living and working intelligently from the heart.
- Decide who you want to be and what you’re building. It’s not a process. It’s a decision. We don’t have enough future. See it and be it now.
- See it as a quest and a mission. Just having a goal keeps that vision and mission in our head. A quest is noble requires us to invest our heart. /li>
- If we don’t believe we’ll get there, We’ll give up as soon as it gets hard. No one else will believe in us either.
- When we align our mission with our values, we attract people who share them and want to help. Work and life get faster, simpler, and more meaningful.
- When we speak the hard intelligent truth gently from our hearts, we never regret it. When we don’t, we always wish we had.
- We can’t love and punish someone, anyone, in the same moment. See with intelligent love and you might be surprised with the response.
- Know what’s at the heart of the quest before building the campaign to move it forward. An idea still being formed by a heart won’t survive the plan being built by an intelligent brain. A brain can forget how that plan impacts the people we care about and who care about us.
- Make a heartfelt commitment to yourself. That’s how integrity starts. Integrity makes us safe, predictable, and easy to trust. Being trustworthy is intelligent.
- Except when a life is threatened, wanting to run fast is a signal to slow down. Knee jerk responses rarely deliver as we expect.
- The less time we have for the people we care about, the more that making time to be with them would do us good.
- When we want want to hold things tightest is when to let go … Holding something tightly is a sign of fear.
- When we most want the light to shine on us is the best time to let someone else go first.
- When we want anything we don’t need, it feels better to give something away.
- Whenever we feel righteous, we’re wrong. Righteous means angelic, godlike, and saintly. Taking that view is bad from the start.
- The universe does not need us to keep it going. The stars do all right without us.
- People are made of the same carbon stuff as stars. Even the humblest star shines. We should too.
- Everybody cries, but not everybody cares. The best people do both.
- We win ourselves when we choose our opinion of ourselves over what we want other people to think.
- Gratitude is a giving, gracious attitude given from strength. We never have enough gratitude, but we can be too needy.
- Every act of generosity goes both ways.
- Everyone wants to look forward to something and needs a safe place to stand. Remembering that can deliver it to us.
- Everybody gets lost sometimes, but most of us find our way home. Helping someone who wants to find their way is easy. Helping someone who doesn’t want to move is difficult.
- Life is about what things are worth, not what they cost.
- To know who we are all that we have to do is look at our friends.
- We can’t separate work from life. We’re spending the time of our life when we work. Trying to balance work and life is like trying to balance your head with your body can’t pull them apart.
People who live and work intelligently from the heart share the humanity of who they are. It’s the in the humanity that we connect to them with our minds and with our hearts. They have boundaries to structure their work and their lives but their hearts touch other people. And it shows in the way that their lives and their work are art. You see the intelligence from the heart in the thoughtful unexpected gesture at the moment it’s needed most, in the compassion and forgiveness offered by a human with strong sense of self, in the way they seem to breathe an intelligent heartfelt belief that people are meant to be all they are. Head and heart together make meaning in a way that intelligence alone cannot.
It’s the style, the color, and the light — the playful feeling that took skill and thought to express — that makes this photo more than a heart in a frame.
How do you recognize someone who lives and works intelligently from the heart?
–ME “Liz” Strauss
Work with Liz on your business!!