This week I’ve taken some downtime to review where I’m at and whether I have what I want. When I compare myself to myself (always healthier than comparing to others), I am super happy.
I have lovely friends, family, a beautiful home, great lifestyle and local community, an excellent network of ex-colleagues and I am learning and growing in running my business and being a powerful coach. There are still things I want to achieve, but they are mostly around my growth and learning. I also want to build reach in my business so that I can support more people to be who and where they want to be in life.
I reflect on myself a few years ago and think about what has made me happier. It kind of boils down to the fact that since my heart disease and cancer kicked me in the butt, I am doing the things that make me happy. I know what my priorities are now and I’m working on them. I’m not satisfied in all areas yet, I’m still scared of some things in my business, but I’m getting better and learning new skills in the process. I am always nervous of becoming ill again by pushing myself too far, but I’m learning to trust my judgement about that and what I want. I am not trying to do what someone else needs me or wants me to do.
I think it is easy to try to please a husband (or wife), kids or bosses rather than putting our own needs first. We are often seeking validation or even happiness from others rather than taking responsibility for our sense of satisfaction/happiness and making it our priority.
In no sense am I saying that children, spouses and bosses aren’t important too, but they are not more essential than you? The old saying of put oxygen masks on yourself before attempting to help others is real. The best role model for your children is a happy and fulfilled parent pursuing what makes them happy. A spouse loves a confident and assured spouse who is comfortable in themselves without needing another to complete them. Bosses – well that depends on the boss, but a good one wants you to be happy and perform well and if you’re going to leave wants you to do great at your next challenge.
So why do we try to please others? I think the answer is slightly different for everyone. My own experience has been that I’m trying to please or rescue others in the hope that eventually it would save me and make me happy. It took me a long time to figure out that the only one that has my answers is me!
What does it take to step into getting what you want? From my experience It takes:
- Willingness to put yourself first and invest in your happiness
- Accepting that it is ok to build support around yourself to get there
- Courage to face fears, knowing that confidence grows and perfection is never necessary
- Becoming comfortable with being uncomfortable
- Accepting that if something is important we can create the space in our lives to pursue it
Life throws so many curveballs at us, and our resilience grows by tackling the challenges along the road to what we want. The more toughness we have, the more we can cope with whatever life brings next.
I am quite convinced that without some of the obstacles (s**t) I have dealt with during my lifetime (in the pursuit of what I wanted and some unplanned) I would not be here today and certainly would not be as happy as I am. So perhaps we can all take a short cut now and build our resilience now for the next challenge by pursuing what we really, really want!