It’s a comfortable gig. It’s a known gig.
Welcome to complacency.
It happens in business. It happens in the workplace. It happens in our relationships. It happens in our day-to-day. It settles into our lives and we unknowingly welcome it.
I’m going to ask you to do something for me. Something that may seem a little unorthodox, but I promise, there’s a method to my madness.
Take a good look at yourself in the mirror and say either out loud or to yourself, “Wow you look really good today!”
Now take a deep breath.
Then count to three and say either out loud or to yourself, “Wow you look like crap today!” Check in with how you feel and what you see and again, make a mental note of what you see and feel.
What did you notice?
Did your energy rise or drop?
Did you stand up straighter or did you shrink?
Did you get emotional?
Did your itty-bitty shitty committee (your internal naysayer) come out in full force?
I remember years ago doing a very similar exercise except I was encouraged to stare deeply into my own eyes and repeat, “I love you, Pam. I really, really love you!”
The first time I did it, I cried like a baby.
I’d become so used to saying all sorts of crappy things to myself (about myself) that saying something nice was a shock to my system. Suffice it to say, it wasn’t an easy exercise to do every day, twice a day, for 21 days.
I’ll be honest, I don’t even recall if I lasted the full 21 days. I’ll say this however, that little exercise helped me to fully understand just how powerful words are.
How often have you allowed that worry to stop you from doing something that you might love?
It's natural. It's actually part of being a human being and our need for connection and belonging.
Here's the truth when it comes to what others think…
And while we know this on a logical level it still doesn't always keep us out of that place of worry. The good news is this; we don't have to stay in that place of worry for too long.
With that said, here's a thought that I use to reduce the shelf life of worrying about what others think.
I remind myself that there's a good possibility that others aren't spending as much time thinking about me or what I'm doing as I might think they are. And that's because they're probably too busy worrying about their own stuff and what other people think of them.
BUT and this is a BIG HUGE BUT; in the event they're thinking about what we do or who we are, let's give them something really good (and I mean really good) to think about!
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO GIVE THEM SOMETHING GOOD TO THINK ABOUT?
The best way for me to explain is to share a recent experience I had during one of the coolest astrological readings I've ever had.
Please don’t get me wrong…I appreciate those articles and the suggestions offered, but I’ve never been able to rid myself of worry for good regardless of what I’ve tried. What happens; instead of just worrying, I then begin wondering what’s wrong with me that the authors of the articles can be free of worry for good, but I can’t?
Maybe I missed out on the worry-be-gone gene? Who knows? What I do know is that worry has been my walking partner for as long as I can remember.
I’ve worried about...
…people not liking me
… what others think
…money, the making it and the saving it
…losing what’s important to me and
…I’ve even worried about other people’s problems.
While I’ve gotten better about not worrying so much (and about so many things), there’s always room for improvement. And so my desire for improvement has led me on an expedition in search of ways to better deal with worry when it decides to come along for a walk.
The first thing I’ve learned during my expedition is that I will never be able to completely rid myself of worry. Worry is always going to be walking with me in some form or fashion and that’s OK. And here’s why…
One that made one of the most profound impacts ever?
I had one as I was doing my morning pages.
Come to find out, what appeared on my journal pages was the essential piece needed to break up with "not good enough" once and for all.
THE JOURNAL ENTRY THAT CHANGED IT ALL
I figure it might be easier just to share my journal entry. That way I don't run the risk of some important piece getting lost in the translation. So here is what I wrote….
Do any of those sound familiar to you?
I raise my hand.
I can be the queen of rumination. I will chew on something until it's lost all its flavor. Oh, and don't get me started on story-telling. The stories in my head can be some real doozies. I'd like to blame the stories that I tell myself on my creative writing background, but then I'd just be telling another story.
Here's the deal-o…we're human. I know, shocker…bet you didn't see that coming. But we are, and as human beings we're trained, taught, pre-disposed, born, to think. However, when it comes to overthinking, rumination, and story-telling, we weren't born to do those things. I'm pretty sure those are things we learned from our environment and from others. (Not to place blame here by any means.)
“Knowing your 'why' is the key to fulfillment. When you are clear about it, your intention will then be a magnet for miracles.” - Colette Baron-Reed
I recall a time in the not too distant past when I was unsettled, unfulfilled, unhappy, and just plain tired. Tired of my life the way it was. I was chasing my tail, eating my feelings (literally and metaphorically). I was living off of credit cards to make ends meet, doing odd jobs that were just that, odd and not fulfilling.
I was not only miserable, but I was desperate.
It was not what I had envisioned for myself when I graduated from college many years prior. I envisioned a life filled with direction, purpose, fulfillment, and fun.
If you had asked me what my purpose (my "why") was, I would have furrowed my forehead and said, “My purpose? What purpose?”