Someone in a Facebook Group asked – What did you give up to be happy?
I pondered that question and took some time to think it through… I finally responded and decided to share my journey with you.
Am I happy?
It did take me some time to realize I am happy. Not that fleeting happiness of a happy moment but the true happiness of a joyful life, living my path and values. Allowing myself to achieve my personal goals and working towards helping others achieve their amazingly grand personal goals. The kind of happiness that allows me to feel sad, angry, frustrated and blah, then allow it to pass so that my norm is contentment, happiness, joy and free.
How did I do it?
I released living with other people’s vision or opinion of success. I released having to control everything. I released my expectations of the results. I have released the need for approval. Like what you may ask?
Other people’s vision or opinion of success includes – getting a “high potential” job, growing your career at a certain pace, having an income of (put in the amount) by (put in the timeline). Get married and have kids by… All these visions and opinions of success are valid for a lot of people, not everyone. I believe in looking at what is important to you personally and allow yourself to flow with your own path. I will not deny being influenced by the magical lure of the “high potential” job and working towards the Executive position by… I got bored! It meant nothing to me… I was not fulfilling my joy along the process. When I decided to follow my bliss, I achieved a lot more in my executive role and started doing what matters to me.
Controlling things around me – I am a typical Type A personality! I spent a lot of time trying to control the results, how people do things and just being a pain in the behind to those who surround me. I was kind of forced to release the results when I got unwell and had to relearn how to walk again. OK a rather extreme way to learn release of control. I now just have a blended approach, I manage the process and work that needs to be done, monitor the progress and focus on that… I let go of the results that will happen… As a result, I achieve more than what I expected when I started the journey. With people, I give them the free reign to decide how they want to achieve the target set for the team; I allow them to decide the action plan and we jointly agree on a monitoring process that is acceptable to them and me, this way I honor my Type A and allow them to bloom… Results – the team has the confidence to achieve, deliver and stay accountable and we can do much more than we thought possible.
I realize that everything I was controlling was born from a need for approval of others. By releasing that and living my life by the values I hold dear, I have allowed myself to release the need to live by other people’s visions and goals, released the need for control, released the expectations of the results and the need for approval.
With all the releasing, I have allowed myself to accept support, to follow my bliss, to forge my own path personally and professionally. I also allow myself to follow my personal values, to enjoy the journey, see the good and just be thankful for the air I breathe.
I am still a work in progress, I still have not given up the 9 to 5, I am working on balancing its demands with my purpose, sometimes successfully and at times not… I am still working to release the need for perfection… I am still working on that passion everyone seems to be looking for… Although my core strength is helping people find it… I have kind of released the need to find it… I follow my values and joy and take each opportunity that aligns with them… Like this… If it works… Amazing! If it doesn’t… I take the learning on my new path…
Feeling inspired? Here’s how you can start the journey to apply the same:
- Look at how you are allowing yourself to be lead by other people’s opinions and visions for you. Now where does their vision meet your own and where are they contradicting your own visions and opinions? What do you want to do about it? What do you want to change and what do you want to keep?
- How are you trying to control the things around you? How can you stop controlling and work on managing it instead? How can you release yourself from the expectations and focus on the process, the relationships and what matters to you?
- How are you seeking approval from others? What is the benefit of getting the approval from outside? What are the dangers of relying on their approval? How can you shift things so that your personal approval of yourself becomes as important as other people’s approvals?
- How are you blocking other people’s support? How can you allow them in?
- How are you following your personal values? Do you even know what they are? (Contact me if you want support identifying them)
- How can you encourage your personal mindfulness, honoring and enjoying your personal journey to greatness?
With love and gratitude,