Bill Murray. “Meatballs – the Movie”. ‘It just Doesn’t Matter…’ Gotta love that guy, that movie and especially that line… Hilarious comes to mind when describing it.....
I was reminded of that line recently when I watched the “The Bill Murray Stories – Life Lessons Learned from a Mythical Man” on Netflix and was inspired by how he lives his life. To put it simply – Bill lives his life where winning or losing doesn’t matter – instead, he just ‘shows up’ for lyf. By ‘showing up’ for lyf, Bill makes the best of what already is – while making sure those around him have an experience they will never forget. To him, enjoying and sharing is more important than success or failure, winning or losing.
There are hundreds of examples of how Bill ‘shows up’ in his lyf and the lyf of others and in doing so lives in the moment and creates magic for real people. A couple examples are when he crashed a karaoke party in someone’s living room late at night and how he photobombed someone’s wedding photos, giving them all a great deal of joy and something to show their friends and brag about for the rest of their lives.
Another example of ‘showing up’ is how Bill is one of the most well-known and successful comic actors of this century and yet has no agent or other ‘people’ to handle his life. Instead, he has a hard to find 800# that you call and leave a voicemail if you want to get in touch with him or pitch a movie, etc. If you are lucky, Bill will call you back, which he often does.
So, what does this mean for the rest of us that do not have Bill Murray level fame or status? It means we can learn from one of the most famous persons in the world – to ‘show up’ for lyf – through being ourselves, through doing what truly makes us and those around us happier, and through truly experiencing lyf as it is rather than wishing we were doing something else than what we are doing.
This philosophy of ‘showing up’ reminded me of many years ago, when I learned from a mentor that ‘nothing has any meaning until we give it one’. What this tells us is that there is no thing, person or experience in lyf that is either ‘good’ or ‘bad’ or any evaluation in between, until we decide it is or isn't. For example, one person may love sauerkraut while another detests it. One may be bored stiff while walking through a flower garden while another may be in absolute heaven.
So, in each case, who’s right? They all are. And so are we. In every aspect of our lives, whatever judgement and associated label we place on any person, thing or experience – that judgement and label is right – to ourselves.
Knowing this simple but hugely impactful principle, all we need to do is choose to perceive things differently from now on. If in the past we were bored while at work or hated going to the dentist, we now have the choice to find what we enjoy about being at work or what we appreciate about being at the dentist. If in the past, we didn’t like something our significant other does or we didn’t like the 2-year-old car we had and had to get a new one, going forward we can simply choose to appreciate what others do and choose to like the car we used to like when we bought it in the first place. It’s that simple.
In applying this principle, I’ve recently chosen to focus on love vs. fear and have been doing my best to see every person, thing and experience in my lyf through the eyes of love instead of fear. Those aspects of my lyf that I used to avoid, get frustrated about or worried about – now I choose to see each one of them through love, acceptance and understanding instead of fear. Yes, it’s been hard, and it is a lyflong process, however, I have had numerous successes too and more often than in the past, I am happier and more at peace with parts of lyf that used to weigh me down.
So, give it a try. Start with 1 hour, then move up to a day, then a week, then a month. Start with an hour of choosing to see whatever or whoever is in front of us – as something we see as positive instead of negative. Do this a few times and notice the difference in how we feel. Do this a lot and notice the difference in how much better our lives have become.
Let's be like Bill Murray and just ‘show up’ in lyf without having to go anywhere special or buy anything different to do it….
Keep Goin’! And enjoy the lyf you have always had - that just got better.