Yes, I want it all. Don’t we all?
Don’t you want to be able to afford the finer things in life – to visit exotic places, and live in a beautiful home, and to give your kids the best education and experiences? You, like me, also want time to enjoy them.
You want to know that the time and talents you devote to work are well-spent, made a difference, and that they’re appreciated.
You want to know that your life made a positive difference.
You want to feel vibrant, strong, and healthy – invincible.
If your reality is far from that, the disparity can seem insurmountable to overcome at times. It can make you feel worse, which is de-motivating and leads to inaction.
Efforts to get closer to the life you want can stretch you further than feels comfortable or even possible at times.
Here was my critical revelation:
“Overwhelm is what happens when things start moving faster
than you have practiced being in alignment with.”
The phrase, “Be careful what you wish for,” comes to mind. Overwhelm can cause you to kill your big dreams, temporarily or permanently.
May was my month to host book club and I chose The Originals by Adam Grant. Stamina to follow through with big initiatives is one of the key differences he identifies between those who go on to bring into the world disruptive ideas and those who have to default to lending their talents to someone else’s vision.
This was another big a-ha for me. When I first picked up the book I wanted so much to be able to see myself as an Original, and for the most part, I do. But the realization of this missing puzzle piece caused me to delve into deep self-evaluation.
Why was it that I could come up with some brilliant, game-changing ideas, but have not yet been successful in having them adopted on a large enough scale to shift the dominant paradigm in how corporate professionals career, hire, and lead?
Funny thing about questions – once you ask yourself a question, your brain starts to answer it.
I have pattern of asking for things to pick up, then they do, and I want them to slow down.
Can you relate to this?
Most of the time, I consider myself blessed to be such a great vessel for ideas and to be doing work that I find rewarding and meaningful for which I have a great passion. However, my passion is inconsistent and shifts focus. Too many of my great ideas die on the vine. I’d like to think they’re just dormant for now, but when and how do I revive them? How do I make sure that the ideas that come through me that have the potential to really make life better, easier, more fun, etc. get created and get adopted?
Some of my setbacks I wouldn’t change; while my big initiatives are important, my kids are my #1 priority. I have allowed myself a certain amount of grace because I made a conscious choice to be at home with them while they were little, but they’re getting bigger and I have to notice what ELSE I let slow me down. Next year my kids will both be in school full-time, and I can start to assume a more conventional workweek. It’s time to make sure that I take full advantage of the time I have, to figure out how to ride a wave of momentum instead of letting it take me under and wipe out.
I realized that the pattern isn’t just exclusive to my work life, but my fitness, creativity, and social life as well. I go in bursts, and then I shift focus.
But why? I can easily rationalize that it’s because I like variety – I like to be dynamic. I can choose to just be empowered and accept that this is the way I am and the way I like it. However, in order to accept that I’d have to ignore the fact that my professional mission isn’t being fulfilled. I started multiple related initiatives over the years, but didn’t finish the majority of them, such as my app. Whenever I was advised that something had to become my obsession or a full-time job, I took my foot off the gas and put that initiative on a back-burner.
Again, I can justify it, and that’s worked up to now, but I once the kids are in school full-time, a big concession goes away, and I don’t want to let another concession take its place.
- I have to start seeing myself as someone who makes big things happen in the world, and as someone who can handle all that brings with it.
- I have to start being bigger than my problems.
- I have to embody the vision by loving myself into a greater version of myself.
- I have to trust that it will happen no matter what by embracing the good and the bad that happen along the way as part of my journey, instead of seeing the bad things as obstacles intended by the Universe to thwart me.
- I have to achieve greater balance in all of the areas of my life that are important to me, so that a sense of deprivation doesn’t lead me to justify stepping back or stepping down from my mission.
The intention is to get aligned with the version of myself that is all of thee above, and to expand my self-image to be the version of myself who welcomes and manages success well.
So, I have a plan and tools to share, and if you have found yourself slowing things down just when they’re getting good, join me.
The tools I will use are time management through block scheduling, and reframing fear and challenges through meditation, visualization, and self-hypnosis.
I will use these tools to generate greater self-awareness so that I continue to refine my plans and actions and continue to make significant consistent progress.
I will label time blocks on a physical calendar in ways that help me keep the bigger picture in mind. For instance, a time block allocated to organizing my desk will be “Getting it Together,” time blocks allocated to paying bills will be “Spreading the Wealth,” and time blocks allocated to fitness will be “Loving the Skin I’m In.” Following this schedule will create balance and freedom, since it will include time for all that’s important for me.
Any time overwhelm occurs, I will tune into my thoughts, feelings, and beliefs. I will listen to the conversation I am having with myself that is causing me to feel as though all that is happening is too big or too much for me. I will use self-hypnosis to flip those beliefs around one at a time (which is how hypnosis is done.)
When an opportunity comes along, I will use meditation to make a decision based on my inner-knowing, also known as intuition, to avoid making any decision based on fear – fear of missing out, fear of disappointing, fear of lack of other opportunities. I will only move forward with opportunities with which I feel aligned and that will benefit the greatest number of people and myself, regardless of the potential visibility and/or money. Saying yes to everything has been a recipe for burn out in the past.
When a challenge comes along, I will meditate and ask myself why this is happening FOR me, instead of TO me, and I will tap into intuition that will guide inspired action so that I am pulled to make bold movements forward versus pushing myself and acting with resistance, which has only led in the past to feeling overworked and under-rewarded.
I will be ritualistic about using visualization to maintain a sense of joy in my work, which will help me generate the magnetism that inspires others to get on board with my vision.
I expect that by following this plan, overwhelm will subside and I’ll generate a new sense of power. It may still happen, but I vow to not let it stop me any more. Even by acknowledging it, I am already starting to take away its power.
Stay tuned, and share with me your experience with overwhelm. Tell me I’m not alone. Together, we’ll become expert momentum surfers and bring much-needed solutions into the world.
“The ones crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.”
~ Steve Jobs
Foo Fighters’ official music video for ‘Big Me’. Click to listen to Foo Fighters on Spotify: http://smarturl.it/FooFSpotify?IQid=FooFBM As featured on Greatest Hits.