Prior to doing this work, I believed that those who are in the motivational, coaching or therapy space always have it figured out. I mean, they must, right? If they have all the tools and use them to help others, they must live a life of bliss 24/7.
For example, when her husband doesn’t replace the garbage bags after taking out the trash, a calm, centered, coach never rolls her eyes or says something juvenile and nasty under her breath. Instead, she addresses it very calmly and sweetly. They have a productive conversation about how meaningful it is that she is able to come to him with her concerns, he apologizes profusely for upsetting her and promises never to do it again. They embrace lovingly.
Rainbows and butterflies, right? Hah!
Now that I’ve started doing this work, I’ve realized that in fact, becoming a coach didn’t give me a ‘get out of jail free’ card when it comes to dealing with the same challenges that all humans deal with. While I have periods of clarity, there is no point at which I have ‘figured it all out’ liberating me from struggle.
Believe me. I have dark days. I have messy, snotty cries. There are times when I’m sure I’m crazy to think I can do this. I come up against my fear. I wallow in doubt. I worry about my kids. I get depressed about the state of the world.
And yes, there are times when I roll my eyes and say something nasty and juvenile when my husband doesn’t replace the bag after he takes out the trash. ;)
There is always work to do. And reflection required.
This work is like a never ending onion. The more I discover about this work, the more there is to discover about myself.
I believe it’s my responsibility to continue to challenge myself, just like I ask my clients to do. To ask the question I might not want to answer, and to dig deep to learn more about myself.
I see myself in their challenges and ask the question:
‘Am I doing everything I can to live a purposeful, joyful life?’ And usually, the answer is for the most part, but you can always be doing more.
Take the 6 pillars that I have found to empower moms to find more joy, purpose and passion in their lives. The pillars are
B – Be Brave
R – Cultivate Relationships
I – Live with Intention
G – Practice Gratitude
H – Choose Health
T – Live your Truth
I came up with them because I have found in my own journey, and those of my clients, these are the threads that are woven throughout the tapestry of a purposeful life. One might think that because I believe so wholeheartedly in the importance of these traits, and I’ve been through it, I’ve got it wired.
Recently when I asked myself whether or not I felt I was truly integrating these pillars into my life, and what I recognized was that I had some work to do. While I believe that overall I am doing pretty well, there are one or two areas where I could sharpen my focus.
One of those is living with intention. Yes, I get up every morning, meditate, walk my dog and exercise – all of which bring me great joy. But am I setting my intention for the day? Lately I’ve found myself feeling like I am so focused on rushing through one task to get to the next, that I haven’t left much room for joy or play. By the time my husband gets home, I feel totally wiped out.
So last week, while we were studying intention, I took the opportunity to do just that. Before I got out of bed every morning I set my intention for the day – including joy, play, creativity, presence, slowing down. And I found that the results were just as I knew they would be – the space that was created in my day, allowed for me to be present to those intentions throughout the day and I found I had more energy and was in a better mood as I completed my work.
My goal in sharing this with you is to let you know that although I’ve been doing this work – both on myself, and with my clients – for about 20 years – I’ll never be done. There is always more joy, passion and purpose to be had. And that deep reflection is so critical to my evolution as a wholehearted human.
The good news is that as I’m in the ebb and flow, feeling all the feels whether they are painfully sad, joyously happy, or somewhere in between, I have learned that I have the power to create and cultivate whatever it is I want my life to look like.
The truth is that you can’t have rainbows and butterflies without slogging through the rain and gestating in a cocoon. Just like the lotus flower that blooms from the mud, our own introspection and reflection is what allows us to grow, bloom and shine our beauty and gifts on the world.
And that makes it all worth it!
Now it's your turn. Which BRIGHT pillar will most empower you to shine more? And I don't mean tomorrow or next week or next month. What can you do today that will help you shine just a little bright? No go do it.