How Staring at a Mark Rothko Painting Reminded Me That Simple Is Good

As part of a 5-hour layover in DC over the weekend, I took an Uber to the Phillips Collection near Dupont Circle.

My wife and I lived up the street from this modern art museum for most of our time in Washington, DC and we were members for years.

Going back to anything just isn’t the same.

Initially, I thought things were different because my life isn’t as simple as it once was.

But upon further reflection, the inverse is actually true.

While I did not have children, or a mortgage, or a dog during my time in DC, there were other things I lacked.

I lacked purpose. I lacked maturity. I lacked a sense of urgency.

I lacked the fire and the hunger.

These days, I have the clarity of purpose, the honest self-assessment of maturity, and the sense of urgency to spur me to action.

Because of my kids. Because of my desire to better myself and the people around me. Because of my desire for legacy and leaving this world a better place than I found it.

These are the simpler times.

Because those things have given me the purpose I needed to draw forth the best of my abilities and discipline.

For a long time, I added and added to my daily list, hoping to find the one thing that would bring everything together. It’s funny that ultimately what made the difference was hacking away at the nonessential.

The first step to getting what you want out of life is both the hardest and the simplest.

Decide what you want.

And then watch your energy and desire grow like never before.

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