I was on a call with an overseas client this morning. She has big goals and dreams for her business and, having had some so-called failures in the past, she’s keen to ensure she doesn’t repeat those “mistakes”.
As I listened to her speak about how she’d like the coming year to go, I heard limitation, trying, concern and heaviness in her voice. She wants so badly to make this next quarter work, yet I knew all too well from my own experience and study of the brain that her preoccupation was inviting in exactly what she was trying to fend off.
I asked her to try on a new idea. I suggested she spend the rest of her night visualizing the outcome she really wants in her business, and then go to sleep and detach from that image.
Over the years as a personal coach for entrepreneurs, I’ve learned that to obtain what we want, we cannot cling to it and expect it to come to us. Only when we clearly know what we want, and then release attachment to getting it, does it actually find its way to us.
Then we talked about how she’d tackle the day-to-day, which hinges on completing external deadlines, over the rest of the quarter. As I reflected on how heavy she sounded as she discussed her expectations, I wanted to shake up her perspective and allow her to reconsider what really mattered.
I asked her, “If you were to die at the end of this quarter, less than three months away, how would you spend these last few months?”
I gave her a moment of silence to consider a question we rarely ask. Then I continued: “If tomorrow isn’t promised and you only have today—only have this moment—, how would you show up? Would you worry about ‘getting everything right and not making mistakes’?”
She answered no. Instead, she said she wanted to have more fun and take on new challenges without worrying so much. She realised that learning from her experiences as she built her business, whether they went well or badly, felt much lighter than trying to get it all right the first time!
Does this sound familiar? Do you ever catch yourself worrying about “getting everything right” and forgetting to enjoy life?
If so, use these seven points to get back on track to a healthier, ultimately more rewarding, outlook.
“If I have only one month to live…”
- What will I do more of?
- What will I do less of?
- Who do I miss connecting with and want to contact?
- What unhealthy influence(s) will I release from my life?
- How will I share my love for friends and family?
- How will I communicate and express myself?
- Am I doing what I love most with my life (or is there something else I feel I must do before I die)?
This exercise expands our perspective by prioritizing what is important to us, if we do it! It can help to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard!) to answer these questions.
Meditating longer over our responses fosters even greater impact. Most importantly, the questions are only as impactful as the answers we find and the action we take. May your answers increase your understanding of both your purpose and your influence!
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Author: Caroline Southwell
Editor: Caroline Beaton