Push the Reset Button

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This week, I’m waxing philosophical on perhaps the most important “pillar” of our little association here in Madison – it’s the “Life Pillar”. The Madison REIA is built on the three pillars of Networking, Education, and Life and we always have some great things to say about the first two, so it’s time to focus on that third pillar of living life – a life that you love.

When your PC or phone or other device starts acting wacky or not doing what you expect it to be doing, most experts will advise you to simply reboot and that will clear everything out and start fresh. We would all be well-advised to do the same thing for ourselves from time to time. And there’s nothing like a good slap across the back of the head by the Universe to get related to this, as I did this past January.

Imagine, here is a former racing cyclist, training 3 days a week at super-intense cardio levels having “bad heartburn” that wouldn’t go away during training. What’s that about? At first, the good folks in the E.R. couldn’t figure it out either. Heart strong as a horse, EKG perfect (later, I found out that they call this “non-ST”or “NSTEMI”), but blood work-up showed a marker called Troponin, an indicator of heart muscle damage. Turns out, I had hereditary heart disease that blocked enough coronary arteries that I needed to be cracked open and fixed up. Filleted like a walleye.

I was remarkably calm all that week in the hospital from Tuesday through Friday, the day of the surgery. I just continued working (have laptop will travel) and all was good. The first real eye opener was meeting all the good folks in the O.R. at St. Mary’s Madison when one guy said that he operated the heart and lung machine to keep me alive while they removed my heart to work on it. Wait, what? It’s like dropping the engine of a ’57 Chevy to pull the head and change the rings. My humanity and mortality became quite present in that moment. And in the next moment, I was out like a
light for what seemed like 3-5 seconds when it had been about 7 hours.

Today, back at it full steam, I still work hard, mainly because I love everything that I do, from coaching people on real estate investing through writing, to developing business processes and programs for our
REIA. Oh, and the occasional construction project or two, just to keep my fingers in the mix. But I have learned that I need time off the grid, off the projects, walking, riding my bike, vacationing, doing whatever I darn well want to – if it is enjoyable and completely different from what I normally do.

This is my reset button and I love pushing it. Not only does it keep me recharged, it makes everything else that I do so much more powerful and effective. It’s a hard thing to wrap your head around – that if you stop working, when you come back you’ll be working better and more effectively. Of course, this only works if you really take the time to really do a reset, and not just some other kind of work. Kick back, relax, enjoy, live life with your loved ones. And the key is to do this reset frequently; a small version once a week, a bigger version once a month.

I am blessed with the ability to do just this because of my career in real estate investing and the freedom that this brings in my life. I am grateful that what I do allows me to stop and relax pretty much whenever
I want to. And it helps to love the stuff that I do when I’m not relaxing. Still, doing that with a passion means that I put a lot of energy and responsibility into it. Relaxing is relaxing. Brainless. No thinking. Whatever YOU do in life, look for ways that you can hit the reset button. It can be tough with a 9-5 job, but there are things that you can do that, if you look hard enough, will give you the reboot you need.

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