3 Lessons Learned From the Master of Mastery and my Newly Defined Mission Statement for Life
K: Hey Chels. How is your day going?
Me: Hi K. My day started off beautifully. I’m in Florida at a seminar at the moment and saw a cool rainbow on my way over!
K: What’s the seminar about?
K: Sounds good to me!
Sounds good to me too! It’s kind of hard to explain because sadly we put more time into taking care of our teeth than we do taking care of our life as a whole. Who goes to the dentist twice a year to make sure things are alright, that everything is on track? I do! Who goes to a lesson on life twice a year? Just to check in, to make sure things are in alignment… My guess is not nearly as many people.
Although I know you guys are a different breed or else you wouldn’t be here with us at Live Your Legend. You are the strivers, the achievers, the ones who want more from life, that much I know!
But take a moment to imagine how different your life would be if you regularly (emphasis on regularly!) put effort into learning about YOU! What if you consistently answered questions like:
- Why do I do what I do?
- What do I like and what don’t I like?
- Why am I afraid of certain things? What is driving that fear?
- What makes me unique and how can I offer that to the world?
That’s why Live Your Legend Local was created, to give you a platform to do that! To be supported so that you can focus on YOU, the most important things in your life and how you can use all of that to contribute positively to the world.
Focus is the Key to the World
There is absolutely no doubt that wherever you focus your attention, that area that will grow. And you have the choice… if you focus on everything you don’t have in life, that thought will feed and grow. If you focus on what you do have, that thought will feed and grow.
In any given moment you have the choice: to focus on what you don’t have or to focus on what you do have. And the choice is yours and yours only.
The Best Version of You is in You
In today’s world, we live in a place where we let life control us but I don’t think it has to be that way.
I don’t believe you have to be what happened to you…
I believe the best version of you is the one that lives inside of you already, regardless of anything external. Now, of course I am incredibly sensitive to the fact that when something terrible happens, there is a time period in which you need to absorb, adjust, accept, strengthen, heal, etc. Trust me, I know that in a way I wish I didn’t. There will be a period of time where your mind and your instincts take complete control to protect you and literally all you are trying to do is survive.
However, I believe the best version of you is in your soul, not in your mind. And I think that’s why we see from day one that babies have “something about them.” They come from the same family, the same environment, etc. but it’s clear so early on that they have their own little personalities and things that make them unique. I believe the best version of you is in you at this very moment, you just have to discover how to let it shine.
But the thing is, we don’t know how to do it on our own. That’s the reason I reached out to other women who had been in my situation after Scott passed, because I didn’t know how to do it, but they did. We need to rely on others to help us learn and discover the things we aren’t wired to do naturally.
Have you ever done something you previously thought was impossible? I hope so! And if you did, it’s because you made changes within you (in your beliefs, in the meaning behind what you were doing, why you were doing it, etc.). You took something that wasn’t possible in your mind and found a way to make it happen. You took the reins instead of sitting in the back seat.
I was reminded last week that our brains are wired for one thing. To survive. Our surroundings have evolved very quickly but our instincts have not so when there is anything that even slightly threatens us (today that may come in the form of stress, fear, pain, etc.) our brain kicks in and will do what it needs to make sure we are protected.
One Small Shift can Change Everything
So what did I really do last week?
I spent time gaining a deep understanding about WHY we feel and behave the way we do and discovered strategies and tools to help align my thoughts, meanings and emotions in a way that will allow me to succeed in having a fulfilling new chapter in my life instead of one where I will consistently fail.
I have about 100 pages of notes but I wanted to share with you my biggest takeaways and lessons from what I learned:
1. Intellectual vs Internal Knowledge
“Beliefs have the power to create and the power to destroy. Human beings have the awesome ability to take any experience of their lives and create a meaning that disempowers them or one that can literally save their lives.” – Tony Robbins
As I mentioned in my post about gratitude, thinking you are grateful for something doesn’t always really work. You have to really FEEL it in order for that to translate into a positive emotion. There are strategies in which you can do this, such as visualization, writing it down to get it out of you, etc. and the more you do that, the more it becomes natural to you and a part of you.
Think about how differently a relationship is where you know for 100% fact that someone loves you rather than just ‘thinking’ that they love you? How differently do you act? What are you motivators in that relationship? You likely come from a giving place rather than a place of fear.
Over the past few months I have not only thought grateful thoughts but I have also really felt and experienced them. And I don’t mean to make it sound like gratitude replaces sadness. There are countless moments where I experience overwhelming sadness, loneliness, longing, and a range of other emotions. I truly miss Scott’s physical presence every moment of every day… He was right there next to me in my life for 13 years and we spent 24 hours a day 7 days a week together for 8 months of this year.
Additionally, I don’t necessarily try to push those feelings away. I do believe it’s an important part of this process to ‘feel’. So I recognize and notice the feelings, then allow myself to feel them. However, there is a sense of lightness knowing that I am making a choice. In that moment, I am choosing to focus on what I don’t have rather than what I do. And it is that small shift in awareness that gives me the reins and takes me out of the backseat.
Gratitude comes more naturally to me since I’ve practiced it over the years but I’ve spent a lot of time over the past few months trying to find a bigger meaning behind all of this. To know that somehow, someway this is for the greater good in a way that our limited minds are unable comprehend – and I have found that on the intellectual level. However, to truly be one with it, I also need to really feel it in my core. It needs to come from my heart (internal), not my head (intellectual).
I’ve witnessed that the more I lead with my heart, the closer I get to that place of internal knowledge. But it is my mind’s instinct is to say: Why did this happen? How could this happen? Because my body is trying to find a reason to rationalize the pain I feel.
But… There are other questions I could focus on as well. What if it’s really not about me at all? What if it’s really so much bigger than that? What else could this mean?
I do believe that we are all connected, that I am a member of a larger community, aka humanity, and we are all here to contribute positively (or negatively – your choice!) to that community. I’ve noticed that every time I take a step outside of myself and look at it from a broader perspective, I do feel more at peace.
However, at the moment it’s a thought that is more at the intellectual level and now I realize that the more I develop the practice of integrating that belief deep into my core, the more it will become part of me instead of just a thought in my mind.
How To Integrate This Into Your Life:
- Step 1: What is an area of life where you are experiencing some kind of resistance right now? Perhaps a situation in which you are experiencing a pattern of negative emotions (a situation at work, a relationship, career change etc.).
- Step 2: Close your eyes and think back to how you truly felt in that situation. Really feel and observe all the emotions that come to mind. Allow them in.
- Step 3: Ask yourself: What else could this mean for me other than the automatic thoughts I have? What can I learn from this situation? Stretch yourself. Try to explain the situation and the outcome from someone else’s perspective, someone on the outside looking in.
- Step 4: Repeat this over and over and over and over until it feels genuine.
2. If Your Rules are Out of Alignment, You Will Always Fail
The quality of our lives is nothing but the quality of our emotions – Tony Robbins
For those of you that have read The Five Love Languages, my love language is Quality Time. For those that have not read the book, it basically states there are ways in which we prefer to give and receive love – through gifts, through words, through time spent together, etc. Do you have any friends that are not “phone people” but when you are together, you feel so much love? It may be because words (i.e. phone calls) are not the best way for them to share their love.
I happen to be someone who really values quality time with people. I can and am able to do that with the incredible family and friends I have, yet if that is my only definition for feeling love, I’m now very limited in continuing to feel love with Scott. And since I do believe that love is something that exists despite conditions, unless I am able to redefine that rule, I am going to constantly fail.
What if I was able to feel love every time I “just feel love in my heart”? What if I was able to feel love every time I see something that reminds me of him and makes me laugh? What if I was able to feel love every time I find those moments of silence and stillness where the world around me seems to stop, even for just a moment?
If I am able to find and feel love in a broader range of ways my options are a lot larger and therefore I will be a lot more successful!
How To Integrate This Into Your Life
- Step 1: Identify one value that is very important to you (health, growth, contribution, etc.). If you aren’t sure, think about what drives your decisions. Why did you choose to go to wake up early to the gym? Because you value health. Why did you choose to read last night instead of watch TV? Because you value growth. Why did you choose to volunteer your time? Because you value contribution.
- Step 2: What rule can you create to set yourself up for success on a day-to-day basis (e.g. ‘Anytime I fuel my mind, body or spirit, I have achieved my goal of optimum health’). Make this SUPER easy to achieve.
- Step 3: Repeat with other values you have (e.g. You may value you Success but you think you’ll only successful once you have made X amount of money) and change the rules using steps 1 and 2 (I am successful anytime I accomplish something that I set out to do: working out, accomplishing small goals, etc.). Celebrate the small steps! This is where the Weekly Planning Workbook is really helpful!
3. If you Create a Large Enough Meaning, You Will Find a Way to Succeed
There’s always a way, if you are committed. – Tony Robbins
I think it’s pretty safe to say that my life conditions changed drastically a few months ago. And as a result of that, something in my view of life therefore also needs to change in order for there to be alignment.
Remember I also have a very strong motive. I’ve had feelings that I know are not sustainable to live with (for me) for the rest of my life. I also have a unique experience because I don’t just intellectually know how short life is, I know it internally – with my mind, my body and my soul. And I do believe that has propelled me in a way to discover, to learn, to grow, to find a way to make this new life, this new relationship I have with Scott, thrive.
As I mentioned, I went on a personal retreat a bit ago and one of the big questions I asked myself while there was: What is your ‘why?’ Why are you here? What do you want to do with your life now? Who do you need to be to do that? Because as Scott always said… he (or she!) who has a strong enough why can bear almost any how.
I came up with some answers to those questions after an out loud discussion with myself and the universe on a two hour hike – yes, I literally was talking out loud and going back and forth with myself about the answers… Call me crazy but it was a conversation that needed to happen!
So the idea was planted and then last week helped me solidify a mission or a why that is not only achievable every day but also is in alignment with my values and isn’t tied to external factors or things that are out of my control. You ready for it????
The purpose of my life is to be a force of positive energy and share gratitude, kindness and presence with myself and others.
It may sound simple but it matters to me.
It’s something that aligns with who I am and the things I care about. It allows me to act with intention. It gives me purpose. It gives meaning to my days and the decisions I make and most importantly, it makes me excited about what’s ahead, the impact I can make and how I can best give back to this world we are all a part of.
How To Integrate This Into Your Life
- Step 1: Start to ponder the question: What is the big ‘why’ or purpose for YOUR life? Take a look at some of the values you wrote out. The things your value most should align with your purpose in life. And try to think of something within your control, which means it involves how you can share with others.
- Step 2: Take some time, ideally in nature, to open the conversation with yourself – you don’t have to talk out loud if you don’t want to! 🙂 What impact do you want to make? Imagine the end of your life, what would you want people to say you contributed to the world? What do you feel like you want to make better or contribute to during your time on earth?
- Step 3: Write down and share what you decide with at least one other person, maybe even in the comments below!!!
Get Out of the Backseat
So… those are the biggest takeaways from dedicating a week of my life to my life (although this only begins to scratch the surface)!
So, what can you take from all of this?
Perhaps this will help you think about things differently as you plan your goals for next year.
But at the very least, hopefully it will help you realize that you do not have to be in the back seat, you can take the reins. You can drive the damn car! And in any given moment the choice is yours…
P.S. Are you guys ready to bring in 2016 in style? In just 3 weeks (January 5-12, 2016) we’re throwing our third annual Live Your Legend World Party, where hundreds of LYL Local Hosts will be hosting meetups in over 250 cities in 60+ countries, all during the same week! Keep your eyes peeled for all the details on how to join in the fun very soon!