The Day John D. Rockefeller’s Poetry Got Me So Hyped

After the week that was, I got sick.

Last week was about a lot of things, but most of all it was about progress on the path. But it didn’t come without cost, I expended an enormous amount of physical, mental, and emotional energy in exchange for that progress. As I sat on the couch wheezing, coughing, and hacking (negative Covid test so all good there), I considered how maybe this level of energy output was unsustainable and I’d need to change my approach.

Then I read a poem by John Rockefeller about working hard and playing hard.

It’s short, so here it is:

“I was early taught to work as well as play,
My life has been one long, happy holiday;
Full of work and full of play-
I dropped the worry on the way-
And God was good to me every day.”

I’d spent all that energy in trying to become so many things. The world’s best father. The world’s best sales manager. The world’s best writer. Even the world’s best conference attendee, as if that’s a thing.

I wanted it all.

And I briefly tasted it. But instead of wallowing and retreating it occurred to me that it’s actually not time “to check myself before I wreck myself.” It’s precisely the time to forge ahead, to double down.

There are mortals walking among us hitting on all cylinders after getting their proverbial shit together.

We could be one of them.

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