What’s YOUR end game?

A father once said to me, “I want my daughter to be happy.” I said “I want my daughter to have purpose.”

That memory came to me when I was reading a favorite thinker of mine. He wrote “…focus and contentment are merely natural by-products of having chosen a purpose to which you are willing to sacrifice yourself.”

When I encourage you to daydream, write down your goals, and take small actions toward them, I am encouraging you to self-awareness so that you can more fully engage in what is important. You get to decide what that is.

“Important” could be a collection of things. I hope “important” is more of pouring that better self of yours that you are working on into someone else. Could be up close by volunteering. Could be money you share close by or around the world. Perhaps you desire to be a more caring neighbor or a team member who goes beyond the task at hand. You decide who is your neighbor and you decide what team. Possibilities are as many as people breathing.

Just as I do for my daughter, I wish for you purpose.

Peeking over the edge: small actions

Last week, you were encouraged to peek over the edge of your box. You know, that imaginary box also called comfort zone.

We are all creatures of habit. Our usual, so usual we don’t give any conscious thought to doing them, habits is the box. Peeking over the edge is actively being aware of an edge of our own habits, then deciding if there is a new way of being, a new way of doing in that area. It can be something you don’t like that you want to change to something you do like. It could be something you like that you want to make better or have more of. These can be material possessions, ways of behaving, ways of being.

Small actions are the way to go. Most of us are lousy at effective change in gigantic leaps. Yes, it can happen, often brought on by a dramatic life event. We are capable but not usually in an all-at-once grand a fashion. Small-action change is doable for anyone. Yes, you may have to start over and over again with that small action you’ve decided on. At times, I confidently tiny-step forward in change. Other times I stumble forward. Still, it is forward motion and always delivers valuable feedback. If that little bit of change were likened to learning to a ride a bike, with consistent attempts eventually I’ll be zooming downhill on that bike, hands flung high in the air. Yes!

Peeking out of your box top

Here in the U.S., we have the saying “Thinking outside the box.” This phrase
causes me to ask are we all in the same box? Do we each have our own box?
What are we doing in a box anyway? Can we get out of that box? Are there
better adventures outside of it?

I use this quote often as I work with people individually and to groups: “Everything
you want is just outside your comfort zone.”* How do we know that? You would
have what you want if it was inside your comfort zone. Do you agree or disagree?

Most people associate the first saying with thinking creatively and doesn’t have to
do with them. “I am not a creative thinker.” I contend that being willing to ooch
outside our own comfort zone is also thinking outside our own box therefore
applies to each one of us.

Have you peeked over the edge of your box lately? Seeing (vision, daydream) what
your experience would then be if over the edge of your box became part of your
box (comfort zone) instead? Oooo, a little tiny adventure there that surely you
could accomplish with a little consistent effort and a little time.

Be brave! Be courageous! Know what you want and then screw your courage to the
sticking place to take a tiny, faltering step; soon to running and skipping
outside your box regularly, enjoying your expanding comfort zone. You’ll
serve more, impact more, be more.

*Robert Allen, One Minute Millionaire

Success is a learned behavior

One thing I know is that success is a learned behavior. Yep, step by step you can learn to be successful in whatever area of life you want and toward your personal definition of success.

What four new habits would you like to establish in the next twelve months? Jot them down. Which one will be first? Pick it, choose it, commit to it. Make it your focus for the next 13 weeks to learn that one habit. No, not 21 days; thirteen weeks.

Pick one area of your life (health, career, relationships, finances, fun) and decide one habit you will work on. Not one in each area, only one habit as that is about all we’ll successfully develop into a habit through a thirteen-week period.

First, know what you want. Then, decide the next habit to develop to move you in that direction. Yes, I know it feels uncomfortable because it is outside your comfort zone. Developing one new habit is merely building you a slightly bigger comfort zone. Be courageous.

When I decided to leave full-time employment working for others more than a year ago, one part of my ongoing contribution to others I determined to be this weekly email series. Did I know specifically what that would mean to my weekly living? No. Did I know what topics I would write about week after week? Not. Have I done it perfectly? No. Do I have a bigger comfort zone now that I am more than sixty weeks into that self-commitment? Yes.

What can you commit to this week to move you forward, to develop one habit of success from now until the last Monday of August? I’ve picked one which I’ll share in weeks to come.

As I say in my free online video series, the principles of success apply to everyone. It doesn’t matter your stage in life or your level of education, they apply to everyone. Yes, that does mean you.