In Pt. 1 of this series on The Secrets of Success, we talked at length about specific secrets of success that many of us have direct access to right in this moment and, for a variety of reasons, don't use even when they can take us directly to the life and results that we want. If you didn't get a chance to read it, you might want to do so before proceeding.
In Pt. 2 of the Secrets of Success, we are going to take a step forward on that path to results with a powerful exercise. All you need is a piece of paper and pen or pencil to get started. Ready? Then let's jump in.
Start with just one thing
Take a moment and pick one area or goal from your life – just one – that if you could make progress in it, it would make your life better than it is today. It can be anything; involvement in a community organization, increasing the reach and impact of your business, improving a relationship, deepening your spiritual path, starting a new business altogether, changing a career, reigniting a passion project, experiencing more of the world, bettering yourself through education or personal development. There are thousands of others. What is one thing that would make a positive impact in your life?
Make two lists
In List #1, write down all the benefits that would come from taking steps toward that goal. Some things might be personal, such as increased self-esteem, a sense of purpose, getting fit, or even an opportunity for experiencing more joy. Others may have larger implications, such as building community where it is needed or making the world a better place in some way. All of these are powerful and worthy reasons for making any change. Don’t stop writing them down until you feel you have exhausted the possibilities.
List #2 requires fearless honestly with yourself. What are you afraid you would lose if you tried to achieve that one thing that inspires you? Some people focus on potential losses that are more internal, such as feeling comfortable, knowing what to expect, or even a current sense of competency that comes from staying in your given lane. Others may risk external losses such as possible disapproval of others, rejection, trying and failing, being "found out" as a fraud, or even social rejection from trying to “act like you are better than you are.”
That last one is a big one for many people, especially if your dream is related to something that is not a part of your family’s or support group's historical way of doing things. Sometimes there can even be a sense of being a traitor, especially when if feels like you are leaving people you love behind as you move forward in a way that they may not choose to follow.
This is some heavy stuff. And you know what? Most of it is all in our heads. There are ways to handle all of it without giving up on the things that matter most to you. You may also be surprised to find out that most people will admire your courage and even be inspired to follow your footsteps. I’ll bet you haven’t even considered that one, have you?
While, in the immortal words of that great philosopher Forrest Gump, life may be a box of chocolates where you never know what you’re going to get, a choice to hold ourselves back, sacrifice our dreams and settle for less definitely prescribes what we are going to get – and that’s all. It is the very choice that keeps us from finding and living a life of purpose.
So how do we even know where to start? More on that in Part 3 of this blog series.
Meanwhile, enjoy every moment of the life you have and here’s to the courage to let yourself see the additional blessings and opportunities that have been put in the world for you to receive if you will only reach out for them.
About the Author
Originally from Nashville, Cathey lived a successful dual career as a psychotherapist and a working musician before moving into full-time marketing and communications. She received her BA in Broadcasting, working at the Nashville CBS television affiliate before getting her Master’s degree in Social Work.
A born networker, she has produced events ranging from national conferences and gallery crawls to multiple-artist music events throughout the southeast and midwest. Cathey has worked with nonprofits, community groups, start-ups and solopreneurs as well as SMBs of all kinds.
She is a certified life coach and currently serves as VP of Marketing & Communications with Best Year Yet® Worldwide, helping change the world for the better one person, business and organization at a time. You can easily identify her in the mix by her slightly twisted humor, multiple music references in Best Year Yet® posts, and that little bit of Southern twang that will be there until the day she dies.
Start your own Best Year Yet® today at http://bestyearyet.com/