How Brave Do You Have to Be?

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How Brave Do You Have to Be

Some days may just be about being adequate and surviving.

– Andrew Mellen

Some days, just getting out of bed is a victory.

I’m heading to a conference on Thursday.

Right now, I don’t know a single person who will be there. This doesn’t frighten me but it’s definitely outside my comfort zone.

Regardless, I’ll do the next right thing and get on the plane—in spite of my fear or apprehension.

I’m sure I’ll have a good time and make some friends. I always have when I’ve done this before. 

Point is, I work hard to do whatever is next, even if I don’t always do it with exuberance and enthusiasm.

Because just showing up is sometimes good enough AND anything is possible once I do that. 


A lot of thought leaders and marketing mavens are big on stressing how important the right attitude is to achieving and sustaining success.

And while I agree, it’s often presented in very stark, black-and-white terms.

That winners have to crush every obstacle.

That if you don’t have the right attitude, you’re a loser. 

That you can never have an “off” day—only losers don’t perform at peak every day. 

You won’t achieve success and even if you do, you won’t be able to sustain it.

And while I’m all for changing my attitude when I can, I don’t think it’s just laziness or willfulness when I can’t.

And I don’t accept that these leaders and experts are always cheerful, embracing change and uncertainty with open arms. 

That they view every bump in the road as an opportunity for something miraculous to happen as it’s happening.

Maybe they are.

But I’m guessing that some days they too get upset when they hit the platform just as the train is pulling out of the station.

That they mutter under their breath when they lose a draft of something they were writing for the last two hours.

They don’t immediately see a blank screen as an opportunity to write something better—in the moment they are frustrated at the loss of something they worked hard to create.

But it’s also possible that every day is not an exceptional day of brilliance and ease and connection.

Which is still superior to enduring. Let’s definitely avoid that.

Even the Dalai Lama talks about getting angry with the Chinese government at times.

If someone who meditates for hours every day and has reincarnated 13 times still has imperfect reactions, there’s hope for the rest of us. 

Remember, Tony Robbins owns an island in the Pacific and also blew out his voice.

Maybe nothing is all or nothing regardless of what some people would have us believe?


If you’re facing historic clutter or some accumulation of stuff—if you’re feeling overwhelmed at what you’ve created consciously or unconsciously, you don’t have to be brilliant today at making it all go away.

Today might just be about not making more mess.

Do no harm. 

Make no mess. 

And remember that from that place, anything else is possible. 

That could very well be enough victory for one day.

Are you tired of the story of “too much to do and not enough time?” Would you love to get an extra hour or more back into your week without any gimmicks AND for free? Check out this cheatsheet I put together for you—it’s my gift and a great way to jump start your decluttering.


  • Andrew Mellen

    Andrew Mellen has been called “The Most Organized Man in America”. His message is simple: Get rid of clutter and everything opens up. Everything means everything—your workspace, your home, your time and your life. Without clutter to distract you, you will finally have free time for what matters. One of the pioneers of professional organizing, Andrew travels the world speaking and teaching. He also works with individuals, and global brands including the New York Mets, Genentech, American Express, Time, Inc. and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He is passionate about organization, sustainability, and mindfulness, and lives by his motto: More love, less stuff! Find out how Andrew’s expertise, compassion and sense of humor can help change your life and your relationship with stuff today.

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