It's a new year. A time to speak our truth into our future.
The world has words for this like: vision and dreams. I’d like to think of it more as listening. Listening to that voice each of us has that we must get very quiet to actually hear.
Sometimes, we ignore it because what it tells us would disrupt a whole bunch of things in our lives. Sometimes we ignore it because it makes no logical sense.
Sometimes we ignore it because it calls of to a version of ourselves we haven’t yet met.
There’s a coach I follow whose name is Rich Litvin. One thing he says often is “Most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what they can do in ten years.
For 7 years, I’ve been writing in a journal called One Line A Day. As I was preparing to wrap 2020, I flipped through a few pages to see what I was doing this time last year…how naïve I was about what was about to happen in 2020. On January 5, 2020, I found a sentence I had written that summarized a dream. It said, I want to create a women’s conference where we cover confidence, courage, creativity and connection.
In July, a dear friend of over 20 years and I co-created a two-weekend workshop for women called, Play Bigger, that is about…courage, confidence and authenticity. Guess what….I had completely forgotten I wrote those words in January. But, the universe didn’t forget. My subconscious self didn’t forget.
A vision starts with dreaming. Dreaming untethered from the logistics, the work of doing the thing, and the disruption it might cause.
Today is about tuning into our wise sage who knows exactly what we have been created for in this year ahead.
Today you have permission – to play.
Why have a vision?
We can create our lives rather than react
I was at a conference, sitting across from a friend and mentor. We were discussing workplace mindfulness – a new business she was starting. In that conversation, she said something I will never forget, “Most people never live their lives consciously”. It was like a movie when the person keeps talking but the other person isn’t hearing them anymore. My brain was processing what she was saying – most people just move through life like it’s being done to us rather than us doing life. And, I applied her words to myself. Was I living consciously?? Who was in charge of this one wild and precious life (as Mary Oliver describes it).
It's easier for others to support us if they know where we're headed
I live with the idea that most people want to be helpful. But, if we’re not clear about who we are and where we’re going, others don’t know how to help and partner.
Putting our dreams out into the world, speaking them to everyone trustworthy enough to receive them, allows the universe to conspire for our success. The power of the network is daunting. One of my friends, Nina, is extraordinary and lives to connect and help. I wouldn’t have written this post and delivered this same message to her community of powerful women without her first – she created that community because she answered her own vision.
Live without regrets
What is a regret? When I ask that question, most often people answer with a description of the feeling regret produces rather than a definition.
We each know regret.
She's a bone-deep sadness that arrived when we realized something had passed us by, usually an opportunity that we won’t be able to get it back.
Yes, we can learn from her, we can forgive her, we can convert her to a different opportunity…but we can’t take a different path. She's a fork in the road.
After years of balancing being a mother, wife and daughter with a love of my work, I‘ve thought a lot about regret. I’ve also come to believe that a person can’t have it all … at the same time. There are trade-offs, and when these trade-offs are intentional, regret diminishes.
My friend Beth has a metaphor that I like to use, we each have 100 pennies. The options in front of us would require 1000 pennies if we took them all, we must, each day, decide where we’re going to spend our pennies. And then not look back.
How do we create it?
We listen. You may read this meditation and then re-tell it in your mind. Or you may listen to my voice guide you through it.
First, root your feet to the earth.
Grounding to the feminine energy from the force that gives life to the world.
Close your eyes
Take a very deep breath and let it go.
One more time and this time, breathe in powerful feminine energy.
And, as you do, say to yourself, “The world needs exactly who I was made to be,”
For the next few moments, just notice your breath.
Centering into yourself, feeling your form, being present and integrated with your soul’s purpose, just listen.
What vision do you have? What is your soul prodding you to do?
Maybe it’s telling you to make a change…to create…to honor yourself in a new way…to live audaciously in truth…to close a relationship…to open a new one.
It’s a year from now and you’ve been wildly successful. In fact, you’re outside of yourself, watching you celebrate this success. What is happening in your life, in your family and in your work.
Watch yourself. Where are you? Who are you with? What are you doing? How do you feel?
Is it a BHAV (Big hairy audacious vision)?
You’re likely familiar with Jim Collins’ BHAG: big, hairy audacious goal. This is a clear and compelling goal with a clear finish line that is bold, a little scary and energizing.
Take these BHAG principles and apply them to your vision: Is it clear? Compelling? A little scary? Energizing?
And, now, the big question: What would it look like if you amp’d it up by 10X?
Are you playing big enough?
Are you choosing safe? Safe typically leads to mediocrity.
Bet on yourself.
Did I say 10X? I meant 100X.
Now, what do you need to stop doing in order to make this vision a reality? Strip out the extra…the things that don’t align.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. As we’re liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others. (~Marianne Williamson)
Who are you being as you pursue your vision?
Breaking through limiting beliefs
A limiting beliefs is you’ve accepted as true, but it actually isn’t. Limiting beliefs come from our families, our experiences and our education. They are often things others tell us that we accept as true.
For example, I have a coaching client who was considering moving to another state. Her sister told her that if she didn’t move this year, she would never move. And, my client had accepted that. But when we examined what evidence there was that actually made that true, she realized that it was a false constraint…a limiting belief that was taking many options off the table.
Saboteurs try to keep you safe...but they are not serving you
One of my favorite quotes is “Be careful which voices you let inside your head.”
Truth: we all have several voices and this assessment from Positive Intelligence will help you identify which Saboteurs speak most loudly to you. https://www.positiveintelligence.com/assessments/
Time to Allow
And, now the most important thing. A vision is your soul's voice. The more often you get quiet, the easier it will become to identify that voice.
And, remember, this process is allowing your future self (the one waiting for you to catch up) to speak.
Let her have her time.
Don't interrupt and tell her she's wrong.
This year, why not give her some more space to emerge.
After all, she's the one the world needs. Right now. Give her some space to be. It's highly probable you'll adore who she is.
Emerge. Allow. Surrender. Be.
Rather than push so hard, let it be a pull...a pull of your deepest longings, your biggest dreams, and your truest self.
And, so it begins.