Asking ourselves what we can accomplish is different than asking ourselves whether we should accomplish it.
We often fall into the trap of asking the first question without balancing it with the second.
Tempering what we “can” do with the equally important question of whether we “should” do it, enables us to ascertain if it is aligned with what is most important to us and our personal definition of success.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a firm believer in saying yes to new things and challenging ourselves. But we must not be reckless in this pursuit.
If we’re not mindful in our approach, chasing something just because we have the ability, can root from ego.
It can become a little subconscious game we play with ourselves, just to see how much we can pile on and how heroic we can appear.
I used to be guilty of this.
I’d fill up my life with a myriad of different challenging endeavors where I’d knock it out of the park and impress onlookers, just because I could.
I see now it was a vain effort to fill myself up.
Nowadays, I know I’m already full.
Believing whole-heartedly in our own inherent fullness and value, diffuses our ego’s need to prove it. Our decision about whether we should take on a new challenge becomes crystal clear, free of debris from someone else’s version of success.
Resetting our definition of success is an important step to living a more balanced and meaningful life.
This reset ensures that we’re not at the mercy of someone else’s version of success to define our worth and abundance.
Living according to someone else’s version of success is tiring. Life begins to feel like a slog because the more we juggle or take on, the more drained and imbalanced we become.
Now I have a broader, more authentic version of success that is in better alignment with what’s most important to me. It is from this place that I decide whether or not I should take on something new.
At times, we will stumble while staying the course.
It’s not always a smooth road when we’re learning to unlearn the pervasive conditioning of what success is supposed to look like and that our value is tied to what we do instead of who we are.
When we live our truth and take things on with clear intention, it opens up a new level of possibility for our lives. We can live abundantly with effortlessness in alignment with our authentic self.
There’s nothing more liberating.
Here is a three question litmus test for deciding whether what you “can” do is something you “should” do:
1. Does this align with what really matters in my personal version of success?
2. Does it bring me closer or farther away from what I will truly value in my life?
3. Are its costs worth it?
If you’d like to receive more ideas just like this and a complementary 21-page guided workbook that will help you define success by your terms, please visit my website.
Author: Kristen Buckley
Apprentice Editor: Brandie Smith/ Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock
Photo: Deep Bhatia/Pixoto