My little girl Peyton won a local coloring contest this past week :) She was so proud of herself and it was just such a great reminder to me that sometimes our greatest lessons in life are taught by the littlest ones around us. To put yourself out there fearlessly, even if you might fail. To be creative and do work that you’re proud of. And to seek the joy within the process, even if it’s not the result you thought you were looking for. I know that may seem like a lot from a simple coloring contest, but for this 4 year old, it was such a great moment for her :) Parenting is a constant struggle, but such a blessing.
Another lesson I always learn from my kids is to embrace the moment; kids have no sense of “I’ll do it tomorrow” or “maybe next week”. They live in the present moment and when they want something, they persist and are relentless until it gets done (sometimes to our massive frustration).
I want to challenge you to really reflect on something...do you live in the moment? Are you really doing what you want to be doing? Spending time with the people you want to be around? Contributing in the way you desire? Are you living the life you want?
And if the answer to any of those questions is no...my next is this: why?
Why do you feel you’re not worth it enough to go for those things?
Because if not now, when?
To listen to my latest podcast on this topic, click here and look for Episode 43: If not now, when?
I’m a true believer that all of our choices are a reflection of our self-worth. What is that telling you when you choose to push aside the very things that can set you free, generate time, energy, freedom, peace, and happiness in your life?
When instead of doing the hard work and charging forward, you are paralyzed by the internal dialogue saying “I’ll start tomorrow”, “maybe next week”, “maybe once things slow down”, “maybe once the kids are out of the house”. The excuses keep flowing and you push yourself farther and farther from your goals; farther from the life you truly desire to be living.
This isn’t new information; logically, we all know this is happening. But for some reason, there’s always this gap between us knowing and us doing.
This could be coming up in various facets of your life; whether it be your health, your finances, your relationships, your career - where are you playing small? Where are you allowing that internal dialogue that says “maybe tomorrow” to take over? Reflect on this; journal on this.
Why do we avoid these things that, deep down, we know we want? But yet our actions always speak differently. It’s because of fear. Fear to be honest with yourself. Fear to ask yourself the questions and dig into the areas that you’re afraid of hearing the answers to. It’s the little voice inside your head that’s telling you “you’re going fail, it’s not going to feel good, what are people going to think?”
When you are living and operating from this state, you’re allowing fear to take control over your life. The problem is that fear is designed to keep us safe, comfortable, complacent...mediocre. These thoughts are not positioning you to live your best life.
So how do we get out of this trap?
1. Redefine and create a new thought process around feeling bad. We’ve been told all our lives that sadness, vulnerability and weakness are bad. These are things to be avoided at all costs. We need to redefine the conversation around feeling badly; because these are the feelings that actually propel us towards our greatest growth. Allow yourself to feel those feelings and embrace them; nothing bad is going to happen to you. And in doing so, you open yourself up to healing, learning and tremendous growth. With that, the ability to quiet those voices in your head saying “I’ll start next week”, becomes stronger and stronger.
2. Accept the fact that true, lasting change in your life sounds like, feels like and looks like hard work. Because it is. And if it isn’t, it’s because it’s a bandaid solution; it may be a temporary fix, but you’re still going to have to do the work at some point. Growth and any type of transformation doesn’t just happen in a straight line. It’s messy and it takes a lot of work. Some days you’re going to feel amazing and some days you’re going to feel like you took 10 steps backwards. It’s not a linear process and it’s not meant to be. You’re meant to be tested all the time.
If you’re wondering why you’re attracting the same scenarios all the time, it’s because you’re handed the same test over and over again until you actually move through it. Something to think about.
3. Eliminate the thoughts in your head that are telling you it’s selfish to work on yourself. I was a people-pleaser my entire life; and when I gave up that role, and finally started working on myself, I actually became an incredible giver...on my terms, to the right people and for the right reasons. See the difference? You can serve at a high capacity, be a generous giver and care tremendously about the people around you while also treating yourself the same way.
Think back to what you reflected on earlier; what are you holding back on? And I’ll ask it again: if not now, when? Why aren’t you worth it NOW? Keep asking yourself that.
Because you matter; it really matters. Our world needs change; it needs growth. We are at a time where it’s such a crucial process for us to go through. Start to do things for a bigger cause other than just “cause it feels good”. Redefine what feels good and what feels bad. Because having the same life and same thought process and having no growth or transformation 5, 10, 20 years down the road? That doesn’t feel good; that’s comfortable and safe and mediocre. That’s playing small.
You deserve to live into your best life; to play big in this life. But avoidance and allowing fear to take over is doing nothing for your relationships, your business, your ability to contribute and serve, your ability to make money, your ability to move forward with peace, freedom and happiness. It’s keeping you caged and that’s not what life is about.
For this life right here right now, this is your chance. Don’t live your life with regret. You have the chance right now to start to make the changes to treat yourself the very best that you can.
Reflect and dig in with action. What’s one thing you can change tomorrow that will help move you forward in the right direction? Start small and set yourself up for success. Small steps and changes so that you can built on that and feel good in the process. Which in turn will make you want to do more because success breeds success; failure breeds more failure. How are you going to move forward with action? And if not now...when?