The New Year is right around the corner and looks like for many it’s the one time each year when a large portion of the population decides to evaluate their life. Maybe I should go ahead and warn you that this topic gets me fired up. So consider yourself warned! Now let me also follow up with saying I did not always think the way I do now. But I can say with certainty that once I learned these concepts I never snubbed my nose up at them.
It’s always an interesting concept to me that whether we are talking about our own lives or sports very rarely do we actually: 1.) get clear on what we want 2.) Evaluate where we are 3.) Notice progress or switch directions…
You have heard all the analogies like you wouldn’t take a road trip without a destination. You can not steer a ship without knowing where you are headed…
But when I say step one towards creating the life you desire is about gaining clarity, people roll their eyes, and look for someone else to tell them a different formula.
While this might upset many but there is no special formula and you are wasting your time, energy and effort searching for a magic pill. Or I will be more blunt: you are wasting your life digging down a rabbit hole that does not exist!
Clarity On The Person
One of the concepts I learned from my mentor, Deberah, early on is that you can “claim the advantage” throughout all parts of your life. You see when I first hired her to help steer my life and business in the right direction. She asked me a simple question: “What do you want to experience and what really excites you Ryan?”
My first thought was shit, if I knew that I would not need to have this conversation. It’s kinda like when you turned 16 and couldn’t find your car keys and you asked your parents if they knew where they were. Then their follow up question was “Well where did you leave them?”
Like seriously? If I knew where I left them I would not be asking you where they were!
So, you can imagine my mood trying to answer this question. So in typical irritated fashion I was like here are 10 things I am tired of experiencing in my life. Her response was GREAT!!
GREAT?? I was confused. She said you see Ryan there is a great power in knowing what you do not want because now you know EXACTLY what you DO want! I was puzzled for a moment, but the more I thought about it. Damn it, if that did not make a lot of sense!
I had spent several minutes describing parts of my personality that I was tired of experiencing. A lot of it had to do with my own self-worth and living in my own skin. So, we got to work on describing what the personality of that person looked like.
What did they do? Wear? What type of people did they hang out with? What’d their day look like? What did they read and listen to? I now call it creating your character. Just like you can create any character in video games. You can do the exact same thing in your life!
Clarity of the person is critical. It took years with my own mentors before I was able to create the formula:
Growth → Standards → Environment → Excellence → Enthusiasm
And the ability to grow requires clarity. So I ask you: What do you want to grow towards? What person do you want to go into? Describe growth in your personal and professional life? Can you grow in your relationships? What if you could grow a deeper love for yourself?
You see growth has levels to it, not just some hocus pocus “New year’s resolutions”.
Last Year’s Progress
Now that you have a little more clarity on the person you want to become. Here is what NOBODY else is doing! Taking the time to write down or have their mentors/coaches tell them all the progress they have made over the past year, weeks or months. Depending on how long you have been working together.
I have been spending the past couple weeks with the college teams that I mentor during individual meetings reminding them of all their progress. It’s so freaking easy to let everything you have built and accomplished slipped past us.
We live in such a “what have you done for me lately society”. People are always on the hunt for the next best thing.
You see so much of our energy, effort and focus is directed towards our external environment. As I was taught, we live the majority of our life in the external world. Most people only live by their 5 senses. If they can not see it, feel it, smell it, taste it or hear it then it does not exist to us.
Sadly, this could not be further from the truth. But hardly anyone else is out there teaching these concepts, especially to kids and young adults. They are taught to live only in their physical reality (by their 5 senses).
The external world has us questioning ourselves…
Have I done enough? Accomplished enough? Am I worthy to be on this team? Do my coaches value me? How can I validate or prove myself to everyone around me?
You live in a feeling of constant lack. The feeling to always be or become more. Chasing down that rabbit hole that never ends. Working to fill a void deep within your soul, that you can never put your finger on because it is always running from you.
As so many people have said “Where your focus goes, your energy flows”. And your focus is filling that void, meaning all your energy is on what has not happened in your life.
Sadly, causing you to forget all the things you have accomplished in your life. It’s another reason why a 2 minute journal can be so powerful. Taking the time to write down 1 or many things that excited you that day.
Yet, I know I know…that will not bring your goals into your life. But I am living proof and all those that I learned from plus the ones that trust me enough to take my word for it. Small moves like this lead to power moves in your life!
So I ask you…What if you took a chunk of time and wrote down all the progress you have made in the past year. Would that excite you? Or if you have a mentor/coach ask them about your personal growth/progress throughout your time together…
That’s why it’s a powerful move to have these types of people in your life. Because 1.)Most will not brag or give themselves enough credit 2.) It’s powerful coming from someone you love and/or respect.
There is no better time than the present moment. The now! It’s the best place to live. I am a firm believer that if you will not take action NOW! It either will not happen or it won’t be sustainable!
You do not just want part time growth or part time success. You want continuous growth. Just like you must upgrade your phones, you should upgrade your life. Yes sadly that means people will disappear in your life. Meaningful people, people that you love and care for.
If no one has told you. I will. This does not make you a bad person. As my mentor always reminds me, “Not every relationship is meant to last forever”. If those people, friends or family members stand in the way of creating who you want to become it’s time to move on today.
I will end by saying that this goes for me as well. When I start mentoring/coaching a team I always tell them I will not ask them to do anything I am not currently doing or that I have not used personally in the past…
I have written down the experiences I want to create over the next year and if you read them most of you would either laugh or not believe that it’s possible. This is going to require me to upgrade, grow and set a completely new standard for myself. But I am excited. I wanna do this. This is fun and playful to me!
Decide what you want and go get it!