I can’t believe I haven’t posted since August. I was on a roll back in September and October, writing every day for Seth Godin’s altMBA (you can apply here for the next session – it’s life changing).
That experience taught me that you have SO much capacity in your days.
Capacity that is wasted.
Capacity that is waiting to be given to the world.
Capacity that will come back to you generously.
For four intense weeks, I juggled a full-time c-level start up job, a husband, two daughters in elementary school and just in case, threw in bringing home a new white lab puppy. Did I mention we were launching our company during these four weeks?
I never felt happier.
Was it intense? Extremely.
Did I hit a breaking point where I thought I couldn’t do it? Absolutely.
Did I push past it and realize that there is ‘good enough’ and you need to ship it? Yes, and it was a breakthrough moment.
My priorities were never more clear. There was no time for Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat. No binge watching Stranger Things or Game of Thrones.
My communications were 100% focused on human interaction. Face to face. Voice to voice.
I created. I shipped. I listened. I asked good questions. I was never so present in all aspects of my life.
Which brings me to two questions to kick of 2017. These are grounding questions. Check yourself questions.
- 1) If money was out of the way, what would you do?
Jay Shetty just posted this video describing the paradox of our times. In the words of Will Smith, “Too many people spend money they haven’t earned, to buy things they don’t want, to impress people they don’t like.”
Some of the happiest people I encounter have very little. A roof over their head and friends and family around a warm fire is all they need. Think of this scene from Charlie & the Chocolate Factory.
Do you ever notice when you give more it comes in more abundance to you?
My own personal reflection on money led me to leave a career in San Francisco, prioritize my family and move to Bend, Oregon.
My career didn’t end. In fact, it’s on a high and I’m finding a unique niche to fill with the gifts I have.
I prioritize walks with our new puppy. I occasionally fit in an afternoon hot tub before hammering out the next analysis or conference call. I’m sleeping 8 hours a night.
Gasp! I’ve had breakfast with my husband after dropping off the girls at school.
I’ve had more human interactions in work and life than ever.
- 2) What are you willing to stop doing to get back the energy and time you need to do, build, nurture or create what matters the most? (HT to Tara-Nicholle Nelson and her 30 Day Writing Challenge for Conscious Leaders – also life changing – join here).
First, I created, said aloud and now demand my own boundary; “I won’t put the company before everything else.”
For the last 20 years, I’ve prioritized one thing: my role and contribution at the company. It was a bottomless and empty feeling sustained by the high I felt when I kept succeeding at climbing the corporate ladder.
Have you ever noticed the corporate ladder is a never-ending roller coaster of highs and lows? Just when you ship the latest ‘urgent’ item another ‘urgent’ item appears. There is not a lull… unless you allow yourself one.
I started this post with what I stopped doing. Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and checking email obsessively.
From Jay Shetty’s video that I nodded to earlier, “It’s phenomenal that the same technology that brings us close to those that are far away takes us far away from the people that are actually close.”
I’ve been off course the last 2 months. Filling my capacity with useless items.
Thanks to my cancelled United flight this morning for giving me the quick kick in the arse I needed. I’m back. My compass is lit up. New books to read. Writing every day. And focusing on human connections.
From my snowy, cozy space in Bend… these excited, surprised faces greeted me this morning.
They don’t care about the meetings I’m missing. The money that we have or don’t have. They care that their wish came true this morning – school and Mommy’s flight was cancelled.
When money is out of the way…