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Useful in the Doing

“We, I think, in these times, have had lessons enough of the futility of criticism. Our young people have thought and written much on labor and reform, and for all that they have written, neither the world nor themselves have got on a step. Intellectual tasting of life will not supersede muscular activity.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson, Experience

This I know to be true: sweat equity in any endeavor is the best way to invest in ourselves, to say nothing of the endeavor. When we labor for something more than ourselves we have a stake in the game. There’s no better way to live in this fragile moment than to be invested in it.

Lately I’ve noticed a tendency to publish later in the day than I used to. This is largely a symptom of filling my mornings with more purpose. I expect that my schedule will settle back into a normal routine soon enough, hopefully not at the expense of purpose but by leaning into structure. Time will tell, but I know I will be rolling up my sleeves and doing my part for as long as my health allows. May that be far longer than the norm.

As I write this, I’ve walked more than 30,000 steps today in service to things bigger than myself. Is that cause for celebration? Of course not, but it signals a well-spent day. We are placed on this earth either to occupy space or to be useful. Give me useful.

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