4 Simple Ways to Experience Joy Today

kids-1235091_1920You can feel it coming. You’ve been a little on edge lately. Eating feels more like medication than nourishment. You wake up in the morning exhausted. You can’t remember the last time you did something for yourself.  The work you once loved is more of a burden than a joy. Maybe it’s time to change jobs. You start to ask yourself if you married the wrong person. Why can’t I seem to find happiness? Why is life so difficult?

Do you resonate with this feeling? I do.

When life lacks joy, the natural place to look is your circumstances. “What in my life is making me unhappy and how can I change it?”

If you take an honest look at the world, joy is not a guaranteed benefit of great circumstances. How do you explain miserable rich people and happy poor people? How is it possible for two people in the exact same situation to have completely different levels of joy?

  • If you are a middle class and miserable, more money will make you rich and miserable.
  • If you are ungrateful for your spouse, you’ll be ungrateful for a new and “better” partner as well.
  • If the cold weather makes you depressed, a warm climate will make you hot and bothered.
  • If your co-workers don’t appreciate you now, you will likely feel underappreciated at your next job too.

Instead of trying to change your circumstances, start working on YOU.

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1. Start with this question: What am I grateful for? I challenge you to write down 25 things you feel fortunate to have. Having trouble? Start with your body parts. Can you see, can you hear, can you touch? Are you able to walk? Do you have fingers to write? Are there people in your life who love you? Are their opportunities for you? Are you free? Keep going, keep writing. No matter how small it may seem. You will find that you have been given much.

2. Take a day to unplug:  Turn off your phone, close your computer and spend some time breathing. Set aside a few hours to take a hike through the woods, by the water or through a field. Interrupt your daily routine and spend a day letting your mind wander and dream.

3. Quit Something: “But, my momma said quitters never win and winners never quit!” Winners quit all the time. If an activity is no longer valuable to you or others, why continue? “My friend would be so disappointed if I didn’t come anymore” is not a good enough reason. Create some space for new opportunities and free yourself from activities that are not worth your time.

4. Give Something: Interested in immediate joy? Give something away. Buy someone’s coffee in front of you in line. Leave a huge tip for your waitress. Bring your co-worker the snack he loves this afternoon. Joy is contagious. You can create a title wave of joy in your office today. Few experiences are more fun than giving.

Make it a great day!

 

Resistance

Why it's the key to your success

snow-1045070_1920It’s dark, cold and approaching 8pm on Thursday night. My wife holds a weekly meeting at our house with a group of girls. I’m in our uninsulated back room, trying to make progress on what seems like a never ending construction project.  It’s time to make a run to Home Depot for more supplies. I have a several sheets of plywood to return. The alley between my house is long, narrow and filled with snow. The surface of the snow is covered with a thick layer of ice formed by melting snow from the roofs of both houses. It’s a long slippery walk from my backyard to my truck in the street. I don’t have a driveway. As I carry the 4 x 8 sheets, I slip and stammer like an elephant on ice skates, bouncing off of both houses and struggling my way to the street, between parked cars and finally onto my truck utility rack. After several trips down the alley and a handful of slivers, the truck is loaded and I’m on my way.

Wow, that was harder than it should have been. I was exhausted. Fortunately I would have just enough time to return the plywood and buy what I need.

With my cart fully loaded, I made my way to the return desk.

“Do you have a receipt sir?”

“No, store credit is fine.”

“Can I see your driver’s license?”

I reached into my back pocket and found it empty. You have to be kidding me. I left my wallet at home! The store was scheduled to close in 5 minutes. “We can’t take your items without a license sir. We have to enter the number into our system.”

“What if I can get the number?”

“That will work.”

I called my wife. She knows more about the location of my personal items than anyone else. She didn’t pick up. She’s in the middle of her meeting. 3 minutes until closing. I call again, Facetime, text, call and finally she picks up. She gives me my license number, I hand it to the clerk.

“My manager just told me it’s against our policy, you have to have your picture ID.”

I call my wife again and have her send a picture of my liscense to me via text. I show the clerk. She calls her manager.

“Sorry sir, you have to have your physical license with you.”

“Can I talk to your manager?”

She calls her manager on the intercom. I wait another 5 minutes. The store is officially closed now.

The manager walks up and says, “It’s against our policy to return items without proper identification.”

I explain my situation and add that I spend several thousands of dollars at his store every year. He looks me in the eye, and says, “It’s definitely you.” He shakes my hand and looks me in the eye as if to ask, “Are you lying?” Finally he agrees to make an exception just this once. He reminded me that I need to bring my wallet next time. Gee thanks, what a great idea!

Relieved and frustrated at the same time, I leave the store without my needed materials. By the time I get home, it’s too late to make anymore progress. The night feels like a waste. I had high hopes of accomplishing something significant. Instead my night ended in disappointment.

The chorus of negative voices in my head begin:

“How could I be so stupid?” What a f$%#ing idiot!” “I can’t do anything right!” “Why can’t things just go my way for once?”

This is a classic story of what RESISTANCE looks like in my life. Resistance has visited me in every area of life. It threatens to steal my joy, thwart my efforts and end my progress.

What does this story remind you of in your life?  I’m willing to bet you’ve had more than a few experiences which have ended in frustration and self deprecation. Maybe it involves a project at work, a conversation with your wife, an attempt at starting a business. How do you respond?

Why Is It the Key to My Success Again?

Resistance is a gift  but only if we ask the following questions. “What can I learn from this? What should I do differently?”  Resistance makes the not so urgent investment in personal growth, urgent and important. When you focus on what you can do better and what you can learn, you immediately add tools and experience leading to a better result next time. I can guarantee you, I won’t forget my wallet next time I go to Home Depot to return materials. I may even be compelled to plan better to avoid having to carry plywood down a narrow alley on an ice covered walkway.

Embrace resistance and recognize it as a tool for rapid growth. When you feel frustration building and destructive self-talk entering your head, take a deep breath and ask these two simple questions.

“What can I learn from this, and what should I do differently next time?”

 

 

 

Avoid These 3 Traps for Young Leaders

write-593333_640If you are a young leader, you’re likely intelligent, driven and talented. You wouldn’t be in the position you are today if you weren’t. You’re on the path to building a thriving career and you don’t want to screw it up. In this post are 3 things to watch out for.

   1.”Playing Not to Lose.” 

Maybe you finally have your business up and running or you landed that position you’ve always wanted and all you can think about is holding on to what you have.  Here’s the problem, when you’re focus is holding on to what you have, your bigger long term vision gets cut off.  Holding on too tightly can lead to the avoidance of opportunities involving risk or tough decisions. It can get in the way of your generosity and creativity.  It can lead to self preservation instead of growth.

Instead, play to win big. Hold that larger vision out in front of you everyday and do everything you can to get you one step closer. Let your thinking stretch beyond holding on to what you have and toward what could be.

   2. Success Starts at Home

It’s time to prove that you deserve to be where you are. You stay late, come in early and work through lunch. You say yes to everything asked of you. After-all, you don’t want one person to doubt that you deserve to be in the position you’re in.

Fast forward a few months or years…You’re burned out, you hardly ever see you friends, you’re once awesome marriage feels distant, you’ve gained weight and you can’t remember that last time you’ve done something for yourself. Don’t let it happen. While you may think you’re doing what is expected of you, it’s often your own insecurity driving you. What value do you bring if you’re burned out? What good is advancing your career; if your family, marriage, friendships, health and happiness are all in decline? You are much more valuable to your career, if your life is in balance.

Invest in your most valuable relationships first. Make time for exercise and sleep. Invest time in things that make you and others happy. The more balanced you are, the more you can offer.  What good is money if you have no real relationships to enjoy?

  3. Perspective and Accountability

Have you ever heard the statement, “To be a leader is to be alone?” Hogwash. There is no honor in being alone.  Holding your cards tight to your chest, is not only a bad idea, is dangerous. Without consistent accountability and unbiased perspective, we are all sitting ducks. Different perspectives bring new ideas, new ways of thinking and growth. No matter how smart or talented a person may be, there is always a blind spot.

Find someone to speak into your life and business regularly. Hire a coach, reach out to a mentor or start a weekly accountability group. You will go further, grow faster and be a better person for it.

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If you’re a young leader, don’t let yourself fall into these traps. Stay on the path to becoming all you were meant to be. If you’re interested in locking arms with a group that can hold you accountable and bring out your best, click the link below for more information. Lead with integrity, love your family and leave a legacy!

Join a Group!

 

What Makes a Goal Worthwhile?

As the end of 2015 approaches, what are your goals for 2016? Do you know what you want?

Financial security? Happiness? Freedom to come and go as you please? Peace on Earth? Six Pack Abs?

What you think you want, may not be what you truly want. 

Ask a wealthy person if financial security has brought them satisfaction.

Ask a business owner who has complete autonomy over their schedule, if their freedom makes them truly happy.

I tell myself I care about what’s truly important but deep down, a big part of me believes, all would be well if I just had enough money and freedom. Why do those who have those things say otherwise?

Financial security continues to reign on the throne of American society. What truly matters to us is often viewed as a luxury, something to pursue after we’ve made enough money. When does that happen? For most of us, never. We cannot wait. We MUST do both at the same time.

so…What is important? What matters?

MEANING and PURPOSE

It feeds the human soul. How do you find it? Forget about what you are “able” to do for a second.

Below are a list of questions. Your answers to these questions will give you direction.

What do you care about most?

What breaks your heart?

What, in the world, needs fixing?

What drives you nuts?

What makes you happy?

What type of people do you wish to spend time with?

Who do you admire and why?

Who do you want to help?

Take some time to answer these questions before you set your goals for 2016. Let meaning and purpose guide your direction. If you need help with goal setting, email me at Michael@mcgreevyleadership.com

Barbaric YALP- It’s Time to Believe Again!

warrior5 steps to a more balanced life.

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Get more sleep with this one simple trick.

7 ways to lose weight without exercising. 

You’ve tried the latest tips and read the hottest blogs.  You may have even recently read a NY Times best-seller. You’re hopeful, it seems to be helping. Although it’s good information, something is missing. There is a disconnect. You just can’t seem to get things rolling the way you hoped. It feels confusing, thwarted and wrought with obstacles. Frustration and resignation soon follow.

Do you know who you are and what you are capable of?

Consider this quote:

Marianne Williamson

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Today I had an awakening. I’ve been lulled to sleep. I’ve been lied to by my own mind. My thoughts lately have been something like this:

“Where you are now is who you will always be.”

“Your business will never really take off.”

“Find something safe and responsible.”

“You don’t have what it takes to create the life you want.”

Lies, lies, lies!

In my head I would agree. These statements are not really true but somewhere deep down in my heart, I hear a whisper, “It probably is true.” So I moped around this week feeling sorry for myself. I was borderline depressed. Where does this vile thinking come from?  Am I the only one?

Back to my awakening. I was listening to a song in my car and something happened. If Christian music offends you, don’t click on the video below. If not, listen, maybe something will happen to you.

The dam of negativity broke and the warrior inside me screamed out loud,

“I believe!!!!!!!!”

In order to unlock your greatness, you have to access our heart and put some emotion into it. Dig deep. All the passion for life you can handle is in there.

Can you picture a time when you felt powerful, alive and filled with confidence and hope? Maybe it was on the basketball court in highschool. When you walked across the stage as a college graduate? When you saw your wife for the first time? When you closed your best client ever? The first time to laid eyes on your daughter? When did you feel most alive?

Picture that moment in your mind. Now, yell out loud at the top of your lungs,

“I was destined for greatness!!!!!” “I believe!!!!”

Does this sound a little hoaky? Maybe it does.

When you access your emotions, your creativity can be unleashed. Who you truly are comes spilling out. One of my favorite movie scenes is from The Dead Poet Society. It captures this concept well.

Have you lost heart?

Today I want to remind you:

You were made for greatness.  There is overwhelming joy within you. You have the capacity to love deeply. It may be buried under frustration and bitterness, but abundant life is coursing through your veins. The same self constructed walls that protect you from fear and insecurity, keep you from being your authentic self. It’s time to come alive and be who you were made to be!

Take a risk and dare to let yourself  believe again. Puff out your chest and scream out loud like a barbarian,

“I believe!!!” “I am destined for greatness!!!!”

Say Yes to Adventure!

IMG_2823“I’m getting cabin fever, want to take a walk?” “Sure.” My wife and I headed out the door with our 6 month old son in our stroller.  We sauntered down the sidewalk in the Sunday summer heat and talked about the coming week.

On the sidewalk ahead, a man and a woman were struggling to put a large couch onto a small dolly. I thought to myself, I’m a good guy, I’ll help them. They didn’t speak English so we exchanged some hand motions and after some struggling, they were headed down the street trying to balance their newly acquired treasure on their tiny cart. Man, it was hot! Before we continued walking, I asked where they were going. “Grant St.,” they said. That was almost a mile away! Cars were lined up behind them on the street trying to get by.  The couch was too wide for the sidewalk. “Wow,” I thought, “It’s going to be a long walk for them.” They were struggling to keep the cart straight and upright and had only gone a few feet.

My wife and I continued down the sidewalk toward the affluent Elmwood Village.  I couldn’t shake the image in my head of that poor couple struggling with the enormous red couch. I told my wife that I should’ve helped them. She looked at me and said,”It’s going to bother you all day if you don’t help them. Go for it, we’ll meet you on Elmwood when you’re done.”

Not too many wives would be willing to interrupt a family walk to let their husband help random people move a couch to a questionable neighborhood.  My wife is special. More about building a supportive marriage here: Successful Leaders Invest in Their Marriage 

I ran back toward the couch wrestlers and let them know that I would be returning with my truck to help. I’m not sure if they understood me so I quickly ran back to get my truck. I pulled up next to the couch and the woman was standing next to it with a thankful look in her eyes. I asked where her husband was. Polite laughter was the only response. Okay, I figured he be back soon so I started loading the couch on top of my ladder rack.  My truck bed was already full of metal scrap. We both pushed and struggled and eventually hoisted the heavy sectional onto the rack.

The woman motioned down the street where I saw her husband carrying a second couch on his little cart. Oh boy, this was becoming an ordeal. But, what’s another couch. We lifted the second couch onto the rack and after a few minutes of grunting, climbing, shimmying and sweating, the couches were in place. I invited them into my truck.  All three of us sat on the front bench seat and off to Grant St. we went. It turns out the man knew a little bit of English.  His name was Vincent. He, his wife and their four daughters had arrived in Buffalo a month ago from The Congo.  He was a French teacher.  They were a very friendly couple. After a lot of pointing and wrong turns, we pulled up to their apartment building.

Rough characters were posted up on the corner looking us up and down. “Don’t mind us,” I thought, “just dropping off a few couches.” We unloaded the couches onto the sidewalk. Sweat darkened our clothes and dripped from our faces. “What floor do you live on?” I asked. Vincent flashed his last 3 fingers. He wasn’t a very big man, his average sized wife towered over him. Without my help, his couches would be a permanent fixture on the busy sidewalk.

I was in deep now. I offered to help, Vincent politely refused and then quickly accepted.

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Above is the first of 3 flights of stairs. It was an epic struggle to get the first couch up. I was beginning to regret my decision to help. On the second flight of stairs, the couch got lodged between the floor and ceiling. There was no way it was going to fit.

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We made such a racket from trying to force the couch up the stairs, I started hearing yelling from the second floor apartment door. Oh man, the last thing I wanted to do in this building was piss off the neighbors. The door of the apartment shook, more yelling.  Finally the door burst open and two men came out yelling in a language I had never heard before and began using aggressive hand motions.

They were trying to help!

After a whole lot of yelling and motioning, both couches were carried through their second floor apartment and up the back fire escape to the third floor. We were all exhausted and drenched with sweat. Four grateful girls from the congo stood there sheepishly looking at us with gratefulness.

Vincent offered to send me home with some breast milk from his wife for my son.  He had nothing else to give. I respectfully declined. He told me he would pray for me. I promised to come back and visit.

On my way out, the men on the second floor offered me a cold drink and we celebrated our accomplishment together.

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What’s the point? It’s a day I will remember forever. It wasn’t pretty, it wasn’t efficient and it probably wasn’t smart to follow this rabbit trail. For the first time in quite some time, I felt completely alive! There was danger, struggle, inconvenience and joy all wrapped into one.  I miss many opportunities but this time I said “yes,” and it made me wonder what else I was missing.

There are opportunities for adventure and joy everywhere around you. They may be disguised as inconveniences and distractions but don’t be fooled. Try saying yes today, it might just make your month!

When It Rains It Pours: 3 Insights

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I hear a faint screaming over the noise of my bedroom fan. It’s dark, what time is it? It’s my 6 month old son. He’s awake way too early again. I wonder if he’s teething. Pain shoots up my right leg into my lower back as I roll my body toward the edge of the bed. My sciatic nerve is on fire. As my legs hit the floor, I’m jolted by a sharp pain from my swollen right knee. I’m not even sure how I injured my knee. I can barely bend it. It takes me a good 30 seconds to stand. My first 10 limping steps are brutal. I pour myself a glass of water from the Brita. When the cold water hits my teeth, I yelp like an injured dog. The filling fell out of my molar exposing the nerve. I haven’t been able to exercise effectively for 3 weeks. It’s taking it’s toll on my emotional and physical health.  I’m irritable. My wife feels it too. The weight of running my business and my family hangs on my mind like a crane hook. I have so much to do but I know sitting in my desk chair will only make my sciatic nerve much worse. I’m 36 years old but I’m walking like a 90 year old rodeo clown.  This is the start of my day. What a perfect segway to inspiring others to live the life they have always dreamed of!!!!

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Have you ever had a day like this? I just took another sip of water and it felt like I was getting punched in the jaw. I have more than I’d like to admit. I’m a life coach after-all. Shouldn’t my life be near perfect? It’s far from it but I’m learning how to bounce back from days like this.

Here’s what I’ve learned:

1. Stop Wallowing As Soon As Possible: I don’t know why us humans default to wallowing in our pain and misfortune but I know that the longer we do, the longer our pain lasts. Sometimes we even make it worse. We perpetuate our negative thoughts by focussing on them, mulling them over in our minds and over processing them. We eventually end up feeling like victims. Self medicating with comfort food, alcohol, chocolate and Netflix is often the natural next step. Even if you were having a good day, self medicating would make you feel worse. Stop wallowing as soon as possible.

2. Climb a Tree: Figuratively. Get a “big picture” view of your life. A collection of challenges hit you all at once. It’s temporary. This is not the reality of your life. These challenges will pass. There is much in your life to be grateful for. You can see the words on this page. You can breath. You have a say in what your next move is. These challenges do not define your life.

3. Acknowledge Your Part: Guess what. You had a part in this. I haven’t taken care of my body. I need to stretch more. It’s been too long since my last dentist appointment. Sometimes, I workout too hard without proper stretching or preparation. I need more sleep and I need to eat better. What is your role in the struggles you’re facing? Do you often find yourself saying, “It’s not my fault?” If it’s not your fault, you may as well pack it up and quit, because you can’t do anything about it. Taking responsibility is empowering because it means you have a chance to do something about it.

Identify what you can do to help each one of your challenges and commit to doing those things for the long haul. This too shall pass.

If you need some ideas or perspective on your challenges, please reach out to me at michael@mcgreevyleadership.com.

 

Successful Leaders Invest in Their Marriage

IMG_2112I’ll spare you the fluffy intro. I coach leaders. I’ve noticed some common themes.  Today’s theme is this: Every leader I have worked with has seen tremendous positive results across the board when being intentional about improving their marriage. 

Sounds good, right? Put family first. I’ve heard leaders say this without hesitation, “If my wife needed me, I would drop everything and come running.” While that sounds honorable, it just isn’t enough.  I’ve intentionally spent a great deal of time with successful people over the past few years. I base my measure of success on much more than monetary riches. I look for things like joy, quality of life, sense of purpose, meaningful relationships and yes, financial success too.

This is what I noticed:

  • Their wives and husbands are treated like royalty. (Opening doors, lending a hand on stairs, etc.)
  • They consistently brag about their spouses and honor them with their actions and speech.
  • Investing in counseling,  attending marriage conferences and reading marriage books are a regular part of their marriage.
  • Although their children are a close second, it is clear that their spouses are put first.
  • Romantic dates, special gifts, hand holding and being present are not reserved for special occasions.

Really? Being a hopeless romantic makes you successful? Think about it.  Your marriage is a launch pad for everything you do.  It’s the place you return to at the end of the day. It’s the person you celebrate with when you win.  It’s the place you find support in times of struggle.  It’s the person you will enjoy your success with. If you don’t regularly invest in your marriage, you are putting a cap on your success.

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I’ve heard it explained that marriage is a glass ball and the other areas of our lives are rubber balls.  As we juggle, marriage is the one ball you don’t want to drop.  While our careers, health, finances, etc. all have the potential to bounce back, our marriages are affected forever. A great marriage enhances everything we do and a toxic marriage can sabotage it.

Is your marriage life giving or is it sucking the life out of you? Either way, decide to start investing in your marriage today, your quality of life and the success you will experience depend on it.

I have a lot to learn about marriage but I the one thing I will never stop doing is working hard to intentionally make it better.

If you’re interested in being intentional about improving your marriage alongside a group of intentional leaders, put September 2nd on your calendar. The Life Leadership Mastermind begins. For more info, email me at michael@mcgreevyleadership.com.

Life Leadership Mastermind

 

The Lies We Believe About Career

racehorse-419742_1280When it comes to life, most of us have pretty good idea of what we want.  Most would say a healthy and happy marriage, family and friends, the freedom to enjoy travel and hobbies, financial independence and the opportunity for meaningful work or service.

The world has promised us all those things but there is one condition. We first have to claw, scratch, and put our time in 8 to 10 hours a day for 20 to 30 years.  We’ll give you a few weeks a year to do what you want and after that, it’s all yours!

So when we are young, we enter “The Rat Race,”  hopeful and energetic, willing to lay it all on the line to get noticed. Sometimes we even stay late and work through lunch thinking that maybe we’ll get those things we want even sooner.

After a few years, we realize it isn’t unfolding the way we thought it would. But hey, maybe it’s just this particular job.  So we look for a new one.  Our excitement is revived and we are hopeful again.  Until we realize once again, something isn’t right. I have a great job that I should be grateful for but it’s the last place I want to go every day. Most folks who work for large companies and don’t like their job, see the following 3 options.

Option 1: Grit your teeth, tolerate your uninspiring job, keep your mouth shut, play by the rules of the system and if you play your cards right, slowly get promoted over a 30 year period and retire in your 60’s.

Option 2: When your job starts to suck, find a new one and continue this cycle every few years while holding out hope that your dream job is waiting for you right around the corner.

Option 3: Quit your job, roll the dice on your entrepreneurial dream and hope you don’t end up homeless.

  • Option 1 seems to provide the most security, that is if your company doesn’t lay you off or fire you. A piece of your soul may die in the process but hey, at least you’ll have about ten years at the end of your life to do what you want.
  • Although option 2 offers a bit more variety, jumping from job to job could reflect poorly on your resume and you may miss out on some of the internal opportunities offered to those that have put their time in.
  • Option 3 sounds fun but not fun enough to face starvation, humiliation and performing your own medical care.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!!!!?????? This is NOT all that life has to offer?!!!!! Don’t Buy it!!!! There are many more options!!!!

This is what you need to know:

1. Your Default Way of Thinking Is Limited: There are the possibilities in your head and there are the actual possibilities.  You have to get out of your own head and start dreaming bigger.  What we believe about ourselves, what others have said about us, what our parents have done and what our friends are doing; all help shape what we think is possible. You’re selling yourself short if you let your thinking rest where it is.  Kick the lid off of your worldview and start thinking bigger.

2. We Were Taught to Believe in Limited Options: You might disagree, after all,  the American dream communicated to us since kindergarden was, “You can be anyone you want to be.” It’s the land of opportunity.” Okay, sounds great, so what’s the process?

Go to school 8-10 hours per day from the time you’re 5 years old until age 18, get good grades, get into a good college, pick a major that fits you, complete your education and the job you were made for will be waiting for you. That is how you get what you want in life.school-375976_1280

Wait a minute. That sounds more like one way to get what you want.  What about travel? Skilled trades like plumbing, electrical and carpentry? Entrepreneurship? Art? Music? Self Discovery? Faith? Apprenticeship? Exploration? The list of things that don’t fit well in this model goes on and on. Our system is one way, not the only way. Think outside the box. Create your own box.  Heck, create your own octagon.

3. Become a Happy Lifelong Learner: For many of us, school has become a form of punishment or a necessary means to an end. Some of us have grown to despise reading, growth and development. It’s been associated with getting answers correct or not getting them correct.  After thousands of hours in a classroom, by the time we’re done with school, we’re relieved to be done with learning.  Instead of learning being a source of excitement, opportunity and wonder; it’s become an unwelcome obligation.  We need to emotionally step out of the classroom and start seeing learning for what it really is, nourishment for our mind, soul and spirit.

4. Dream Like Crazy:  So you’re starting to dream bigger than ever before, great, write these dreams down and add to them as your thinking expands. Think about the life you want. Where would you live, what does your house look like, who do you spend time with, what do you drive, who are you serving, how much free time do you have? How much are you giving away to those in need? How are you using your gifts to change the world?

5. Start Like a Baby: If your baby couldn’t walk at 10 months, how long would you give them before you buy them wheelchair and give up? 13 months? 15 months? The answer is, “as long as it takes!” So how long would you give yourself to live the life you’ve always wanted? As long as it takes! Just because a baby can’t walk, you don’t give up and tell them to do the more responsible thing.”Well, I guess it’s not going to work out, your mother and I decided that you should continue crawling and ride in the stroller when necessary.”

When it’s time for your baby to learn to walk, I haven’t seen any parent say, “Since you’re sick of crawling, from now on, all you can do is walk. If you don’t figure it out, you’ll have to go back to crawling permanently.” This may sound ridiculous, but so many of us treat our careers this way. We give ourselves a limited amount of time to figure out our dream and if it doesn’t work out, we give it up and choose the sensible option. If crawling is our job that pays the bills and walking is our dream job, remember that you still have to crawl while you’re learning how to walk.  Hold onto the job you have and keep building and learning and growing toward the career and life you were made for. Don’t give it up!!! Don’t let your dream die, just because it isn’t working right now. Steadily work toward becoming the person who can have the life and career you’ve always wanted. 

For feedback on your dream and how to create a plan to make it a reality, give me a call on my cellphone: (716) 713-2957 My dream job is to help others live the life they’ve always wanted.