“The degree to which a person can grow is directly proportional to the amount of truth he/she can accept about himself/herself without running away”
Leland Val Vande De Wall
Read it again, this time a bit slower.
Some of you are running from your truth. I know I have.
If you are reading this for the first time, you can get caught up on the series by referencing the links below:
Your frustrated you cannot make the changes in your life that would bring you joy, fulfillment or maybe just a little bit of peace.
That job you pretend to like, that relationship that drains you, that workout you never get in.
At some point YOU have to change, before anything can change.
You have to change your thoughts, your feelings, your decisions, your choices and your attitude.
You have to choose to make time for the gym. You have to decide to change your work life.
Some of you need to change your environment. Some of you need to change your relationships.
Some of you need to stop beating yourself up and living in the past.
Some of you need to stop blaming others.
Some of you just need to decide you are no longer going to settle for mediocre work and an average life.
I have had what many would consider to be a good career with a fair amount of success, but much of that was manufactured out of responsibility and duty. Not joy, not fulfillment, not purpose. Security, some illusion of an identity that society deemed acceptable, yes, those were the ingredients that kept me stuck.
If you have been trying the same tactics and expecting a different result in your life, that is the definition of insanity. Until you change your beliefs, until you change your image of who you are, until you change you, nothing will change.
Open yourself up to new ideas and new tactics, change your life. If you are trying to change anything in your life, get in shape, get a new job, etc., it is likely your old tried and true tactics of getting a result will eventually fail you.
The old mentality of setting goals, working harder, acquiring new skills are all worthy activities and have their uses, but they also have their limits. The goals get pointless, the efforts are short-lived and the same old patterns stay in place.
You have to change what you believe is possible. You have to see beyond the change to FEEL what is possible.
This is where I found myself in March of this year. I was frustrated, tired and out of answers. Getting a new job sounded awful. Brushing up my resume, updating LinkedIn and trying to convince myself there was something better was fool’s gold. It was beyond just finding new work.
I needed to find me, my joy, my fulfillment, what made me come alive.
Change defined – to make the form, nature, content, future course, etc., of (something) different from what it is or from what it would be if left alone.
I love the last part of that definition – from what it would be if left alone. Left alone being the key words.
Change is hard. I get it.
My career has been based on the ability to change something for a better result. Change a process, change a system, implement a new program, change, change, change.
The biggest challenge was not the new process, not the new system. Those are easy, the biggest challenge was getting the people to accept the new process, accept the new system, accept the new order of any change. I have seen co-workers lose their job because they would not make the change.
People like comfort. I love being comfortable, but comfort is not a great recipe for change.
Your life will change when you become more committed to your dreams than your comfort zone.
BUT, anything worth doing, anything worth obtaining, will come with challenges and sometimes some significant hardship.
Getting up every day going to a job you tolerate, maybe even hate,
one that created so much stress you can’t sleep because
but you have decided that, hey,
I know this job.
My stock options will vest in a year.
The benefits are great.
The kids are going to college in a few years.
I have no clue what I want or what I would do.
I am just too tired to look for something else. (My favorite)
I have used all those excuses to stay stuck. Unwilling to change.
Here is what I have learned about change –
If you do not anchor yourself in the benefit or feeling that change will make possible, then you will not sustain the desire and commitment to make that change. You just will not.
Would you be willing to go to the gym three days a week so that you had the energy to pursue that dream of yours or have energy for your kids?
Would you be willing to ask for help to get that new business idea off the ground?
Would you be willing to set aside a night a week to connect with your wife more often?
If you don’t have the energy to pursue your dreams, play with the kids or any other “important” activity in your life, wouldn’t you get in a little better shape physically?
Wouldn’t it be worth it?
How would you feel if you could make progress on that dream of yours?
How would you feel if you could spend time pursuing your passion vs making a living?
How would you feel to find work that made you come alive?
How would it feel to just be yourself for once?
We have substituted short term satisfaction and comfort at the expense of long term meaning, joy and fulfillment.
We have settled to avoid change.
Over the next 5 newsletters I am going to be going into detail as to what I have changed over the last six months that has made a world of difference in my work (yes the same work that I thought would kill me) and my overall contentment, joy, peace, freedom and fulfillment.
Some of these changes you will likely resonate with, others are going to come across as unconventional.
It is like I have found a few secrets and it would be a crime not to share them with you.
Up Next – Emotional Fluency and Fitness.