I kid you not! When I left my position as Director of Advertising in print media and transitioned to owning a retail store, I often found myself saying to people “I’m so looking forward to having more time to volunteer and for myself.” (roll eyes).
However, as I would later learn via the school of hard knocks, I had brought along all my emotional baggage that I didn’t realize I was carrying and proceeded to forge ahead at full steam driven by the beliefs I wasn’t aware that I had.
So, take a word of caution from someone who’s “been there, done that”, before jumping, consider these 11 Unconventional Ideas for Taking Your Next Step in Life:
#1: Wherever you go, there you are.
Your beliefs, thought patterns, habits and behaviors will go with you into your next career creation, next relationship and even the next town. You can’t escape you. So, unless the situation you are in is detrimental to your health, hang on…don’t jump ship yet, there may be valuable lessons to be learned.
#2: Take notice…
Of what pushes your buttons, what triggers you, what overwhelms you, what drags you down. Your current situation can be ripe with opportunities to rewire reactive habits. This is a great time to ask for help – hire a therapist, career coach or a fabulous mentor ;-).
#3: You’re busy, but…
A business coach told a friend of mine, “you should only be doing, what only you can do.” Hmm. How are you at asking for what you want, delegating, letting go, not being in control all the time, loosening your grip? Will switching careers magically make you better at this?
#4: Don’t let the turkeys get you down.
If you want to do something really freeing and liberating, learn how not let people get under your skin and don’t take things personally. How? See #2.
#5: Stay out of the what and how.
Humans tend to think we must have it all figured out. It just doesn’t work that way. So, here’s a tip that has helped me tremendously (in addition to tossing my heavily used map out the window) – begin with how you want to feel, not with what you want to do.
#6: What do you loath, like, love?
Begin a career/life mindfulness practice. Keep a pad on your desk (or use your phone’s note pad) and jot down what you don’t like, what you do like and what you love – the parts of your job that light your fire. What about volunteer outreach you’re involved in – what do you loath, like, love?
#7: What’s your rhythm?
When I sold my nutrition store and stepped out of 35 years of working 8 to 5, Monday through Friday, I had no idea what my personal rhythm was. Today I know that what works best for me is to be ‘on’ moving and grooving and then to step back and rest and rejuvenate. For others, day to day structure is important. What works best for you?
#8: Begin an adventure – without leaving home.
Every morning, before heading out for the day ahead, take a moment to set your intention to discover treasure. The treasure of what makes you tick, what lights your fire, what your zone of genius is and what pearls are needing to be polished.
#9: Do you know how to stop?
I’m not talking about vacation, but every single day. Are you able to carve out time for yourself? Because let me tell you, I couldn’t. Every moment was full of doing something and when I stopped, I felt agitated and guilty for not doing that ‘something.’ If this is you now, a new job, new situation won’t change this…because wherever you go, there you are. See #1.
#10 Launch a thought.
Crazy, but it works. It was 2002, my 13th year working in print media. I was ready for something else and I was clear on two things. #1. It had to be something that helped people. #2. It couldn’t be retail. I launched my thought. Two years later, I became the owner of a nutrition store that helped so many people. I know, I know – it was retail, which leads me to…
#11: You don’t always get what you ask for, but you always get what you need.
I had more lessons to learn. I had yet to learn what I’ve shared here, so the universe compromised – we’ll give you a little, plus the perfect situation for you to learn what you need to learn and then and only then, will you arrive at what you want.
To my long-time blog readers – if this sounded familiar, there’s a reason. This blog is a re-run with a few edits; written before I knew that my “next big step” would be creating the Alchemy of Feminine Leadership™ programs that guide women to doing just what I talk about here – discovering your hidden beliefs and thought patterns, learning how to ‘let go’ of what doesn’t serve you and grow what does!
My course, PERMISSION TO SHINE: Calling In Clarity & Confidence will be offered online soon. Click here to learn more and up to be one of the first notified!
Here’s a resource for you!
An acquaintance of mine, Spiritual Life Coach, Donna Otmani, created a free worksheet packet (based on her own experiences of trying to figure out that next career step) called: “Uncovering What’s Next” The packet includes great questions for sorting out what types of work and work environment are fulfilling to you.
Click here for free access.
Of these 11 ideas – what’s your favorite and why? Post in the comments below.
I know what upper limiting is. I’ve read the Big Leap by Gay Hendricks (twice) and re-read the chapter on upper limiting (three times). I even talk about upper limiting in my course, but it wasn’t until this week that how I upper limit, finally became crystal clear.
Upper limiting is a form of self-sabotage. We have a desire we’d like to fulfill and a dream to spread our wings, but our brains want us to take the easiest path. It’s crazy because the easiest path, is most often the path that finds us falling into habits and patterns that result in the opposite of what we’re desiring.
Case in point.
I recently completed creating a course to help women find their clarity and confidence so that life and business moves forward with much more ease. I’ve been testing this new course curriculum with clients, fine-tuning it and building my own confidence too. Yahoo – it’s working, it’s ready to go. Next step is to set a date, promote my offering and bring this to the world. Right?
Apparently, it was time to make edits to my website, to learn about membership sites, to read an entire book about copywriting, to re-write my lead gen offer (a free download called Six Steps to Harnessing Clarity and Confidence), to do anything except what I’ve been working towards for three years.
Well, my next step is frankly, scary – outside of my comfort zone, so my mind is throwing up obstacles to make sure I take the easy path. And that’s crazy! What’s easy about status quo?
“Self-sabotage is when we say we want something and then go about making sure it doesn’t happen.” – Alyce P. Cornyn-Selby
Taking a page from my course handbook (the course I have yet to publicly offer)…
“We all have an internal thermostat for what is comfortable.
Even though we may use words like “bring it on”, when ‘on’ arrives, it’s uncomfortable and yes, even too good.
Our thermostat is usually set by our parents, relatives and teachers when we are young. What was comfortable for them, has become comfortable for us.
Upper Limiting shows up as self-doubt, fear of failure/criticism, wanting to fit in, worry and even guilt when something comes easy to you and not to others.”
The next line I wrote in the handbook “Identifying your hidden self-sabotaging behaviors is a powerful step to turning your comfort thermostat up,” clearly needs to begin with “listen up Suzy!”
I am listening.
The beauty of harnessing clarity is you begin to see through a clearer lens. Without clarity I would have missed (once again) my behaviors that are leading me away from what I desire.
I now see that my upper limiting sabotage shows up as:
- Saying to myself “I’m almost ready, I just need to __________first.”
- Getting creative with graphic design – it’s easy, it’s fun.
- Learning more and more – because, how can I move forward if I don’t know everything…right now?
- Deciding that my website copy I have, isn’t good enough…again!
- Doubting what I’ve created. Egads! This course was created with guidance from a PhD in Adult Learning for an entire year. Hello!!!
BUSYNESS = AVOIDANCE – AH HAH!
Think about it – is there something you would love to accomplish or do?
What are the behaviors that get in your way? I’ll be the first to tell you, it’s tricky! These behaviors masquerade in the most creative ways…procrastination, excuses, stories, should’s, busyness, comparison and not good enough.
When life is a whirlwind of constant activity, juggling all that you do…catching how you sabotage yourself is lost in the noise of the day.
Turn down the noise, so you can turn up your thermostat!
The heat is on! Care to join me?
My ________________ was writing this weeks blog.
- I suppose I could have written it over the weekend.
- I suppose I could have gotten up extra early or stayed up extra late.
But then I looked at a list I keep on my bulletin board of what’s most important to me and made the choice to trust that an idea would come to me and made an agreement with myself, to not give writing my blog another thought, because…
When I glanced at my list, “meaningful connection” was shining brightly. So, my husband and I chose to have our six-year old friend overnight and spend most of Saturday taking her to our county fair (pigs, cats, horses, bunny’s – fun stuff!) and out to lunch. Very fun and then Sunday a family members beautiful wedding. Two days of soul-care – doing what makes our hearts happy!
Occasionally ‘I must write my blog’ slipped into my mental space, but I remembered my agreement and let that thought go – trusting that an idea would come.
Guess what? Monday morning I woke up and knew exactly what to share for this weeks blog…something both different and valuable for finding clarity, gaining energy and determining what is most important to you.
Every Wednesday in my facebook group Virago Women, I share ideas for navigating some of the main issues that many women find challenging.
So in lieu of writing this week (although…did you catch how ‘going with the flow’ works? 😉, I’m sharing five FB LIVE topics that you can choose from – or watch them all [each video is 10-minutes or less].
Click on the title link to watch.
(My first live – start at the 1-minute mark to skip my blooper).
The Holy Grail of Self Care
A healthier way of embracing self-care
Stay in Your Own Lane
This could also be called – How to Take your Energy Back
The ‘I Shoulds’…Should Not
Are you ruled by ‘shoulds’? I was – big time!
This is a very important concept, especially for women. This video shares why.
I’d love to know which topic most resonated with you and why…
Clarity is…well – it’s everything. When you have clarity; overwhelm dissipates, anxiety diminishes, worry takes a back seat (or no seat at all), thoughts and beliefs previously hidden under a blanket of “I shoulds,” concerns, responsibilities and projects, reveal themselves – you become aware – and then there is space for clarity to emerge.
Recently I was walking with a friend who process’s outwardly, as opposed to thinking things through mentally/emotionally and then speaking (that’s more my style). She speaks to find her clarity. I’m honored she feels comfortable enough with me to let her thoughts meander and…
It’s a win/win. I receive insight, and often there’s a reciprocal pearl of wisdom that is shared—which is exactly what happened on our most recent walk. She shared an idea with me, that someone had shared with her, that I thought was brilliant – a mini ‘self’ retreat. Spending a day or optimally a couple of days with one of the most interesting, awesome people you know…yourself!
Here’s how it works…
Self-Retreat: PART A:
#1: Set aside a day (two if possible) – NO ELECTRONICS, NO DISTRACTIONS. This is your opportunity to retreat into yourself.
#2: Have a stack of blank note cards
#3: Write one wish, desire, dream you’d like to manifest or accomplish, on each note card
#4: Keep writing – there is no limit on dreams and desires (one per note-card)
#5: PAUSE – a long pause of at least a few hours. Go do something fun – no thinking about your note cards.
Self-Retreat: PART B:
#1: Look at each note card with this question in mind:
What is a step(s) I can take to move towards my desire? AND
Why haven’t I taken this step(s) to make this reality?
Write your reasons, excuses, beliefs down. This may reveal blocks (emotional) and reasons both valid and invalid.
#2: PAUSE – a long pause of at least a few hours. Go do something fun – no thinking about your note cards.
Self-Retreat: PART C:
#1: Look at each note card with this question in mind:
Is this something I REALLY desire?
Is this desire based on my beliefs or someone else’s?
Why is it I desire this?
#2: Organize your notecards per your new insights, toss those that no longer fit you or serve your highest and greatest good and then, revisit the question “what is a step I can take to move towards my desire now?”
This mini-retreat idea would have served me well during my ‘over-ing’ years! But alas, I did not have this idea tucked in my back pocket and as such, my pile of note cards with wishes and desires was a mile high!
Today, my note card stack is very short, filled with clarity and sparkling with spaciousness for what feeds my soul.
Now it’s your turn!
I’m curious, are you feeling the pull to take your own mini-retreat (and if so, why), with a pile of note cards in hand? Post in the comment section below.
I was recently asked this question “how much self-care is needed each day?” Which begs the question, “what is self-care?”
Before I share what the Holy Grail of Self-Care is, consider this – the self-care/self-improvement is a $4.2 trillion dollar industry globally. That equals a lot of marketing and messages driven at making you think you need to be a certain way, or do a certain thing.
Charlotte Lieberman, Harvard Business Review wrote “We are approaching the pursuit of work-life balance with the same obsessive (and oppressive) energy as we do our careers. Although the American Psychiatric Association reports that 39% of U.S. adults feel more anxious than they did a year ago”
Self-care is often associated with outer-body experiences…massages, fitness, facials…all things that have a “feel good” element and for the health of your body (and mind), are very important – but, on the topic of consistent, daily care; ‘outer-body’ self-care can also feel like just another thing, you have to do and when you get over-busy, it’s the first thing that goes out the window, right?
This feeling is perpetuated by advertising from the self-care industry, fitness photo’s on social media of how you are supposed to look and all those products you need, in order to be happy plus a plethora of apps and wrist watches to track your “self-care” progress…and that’s relaxing how?
The idea of what self-care is has become completely skewed!