What is Conscious Leadership? Leading with Purpose!

What is Conscious Leadership? Leading with Purpose!

Conscious leaders recognize the importance of having a purpose in both their personal life and professional lives. Any good leader coming into a new company culture focuses very quickly—not just on hard work and profit margin, but on determining “What is the purpose of this company?” In fact, they should know that purpose long before they even come through the front door because they’re going to have to come in and hit the ground running.

Why is knowing a company’s purpose important? Well, once you know what the purpose is, you know how to prioritize. You understand what kinds of goals to set. You grasp the conscious culture that needs to be supported and the decision-making process to get there. And once a leader knows these things it means they can begin to see who is a good fit for which roles and how to play to the strengths of team members and employees.

Beyond the status quo

When nobody knows where they’re going or what they’re doing or how they’re doing it, it’s a little bit like the Headless Horseman charging around creating confusion, constantly reacting to external factors. But once you have a clear purpose and understand an organization’s structure, you can lead in a way that creates enough weight to start pulling people out of lethargy and confusion and onto a defined path. You can inspire people to develop greater emotional intelligence and get them excited about personal growth within the company culture. And don’t you know people love nothing more than clarity and a good game to play with others!

So, a really good leader creates a good game around purpose, finds out what’s in it for every single member of their team, and points out a new and different way beyond the status quo of “business as usual.” This is good systemic leading or leadership 101.

Creation not reaction

Those who assume a leadership position are expected to be more responsible, more insightful, cleverer, and more inspirational than most people. Ideally, they are a self-aware leader with a high level of emotional intelligence and a sense of social responsibility beyond traditional leadership models.

Unfortunately, without knowing about the need for purpose and how purpose drives the organization of an organization, many new leaders quite often end up floundering at the starting point. And this is often an unconscious extension of how they were raised as young people in their own homes and educational settings.

Most people navigate life pretty unconsciously in their personal lives, reacting to people and situations, playing out self-limiting beliefs rather than coming from their true self and a more grounded, purposeful, creative position. This habit of unconscious reaction versus creation has far-reaching consequences, bleeding over into many areas of their lives including their professional lives.

A good leader doesn’t just “happen.” Conscious leadership arises when we begin to mindfully consider every aspect and element of our lives on a day-to-day basis. It happens when we’re ready to take radical responsibility for personal growth and start acting out of our true self.

At that point, our grounded creative, purposeful way of interacting with others and making choices naturally draws us into opportunities where our leadership qualities can shine and our hard work and good example help build a better world for all.

Start your mindful leadership adventure

Conscious leadership is a deliberate decision. It is a commitment to developing ourselves at work and in our personal relationships in our daily lives. In the business world, it is a commitment to developing a money-follows-value mindset, thereby inspiring those around us.

It asks a lot of us—nothing less than a full awareness of the self—which includes being present, engaging a conscious decision-making process, validating the positions and thoughts of others while inspiring greater emotional intelligence, movement and growth.

Mindful leadership happens when we deliberately turn to the highest form of who we are—our true self. And it doesn’t always have to take the form of actively promoting effective leadership approaches focused on things like leadership development and social responsibility in one’s team members. It can be something as simple as a kind act, an invitation, a smile, or a helping hand.

The far-reaching consequences of kindness and compassion—especially if you bear an important professional title—cannot be overstated. Sometimes giving a genuine smile is the single most beneficial thing you can do for someone. It’s a powerful tool. Which means you don’t have to hire a leadership coach to develop potent leadership skills. It’s actually the little things that form the core elements of conscious leadership. And those things—the encouraging nod, the casual offer of assistance, the genuine compliment—you can practice and build upon, day by day on your own.

This conscious awareness and attention to sometimes the smallest things can be developed in anybody—which is why you’ll often hear me say, “Everybody is a leader, whether they know it or not.” In those moments when we reach out in compassion and empathy, we take a position of mindful leadership. When we come from our hearts and from our highest level of intent—to put it bluntly, we are purposefully making powerful magic. Coming from the space of genuine concern and consideration for others, our thoughts, feelings, words and actions have an incredibly positive impact and go a long way towards helping develop the better world we all long to live in.

Starting point

Leaders become leaders when they arrive at the starting point, which is: An awareness that there is more to life than just whatever is there in front of them. When they gain that awareness and make the conscious decision to explore that “something more,” they begin to move out of the status quo of reactionary thinking and unconscious action. As their level of self-awareness increases, they develop the belief that they can do and become even more.  Thus encouraged, they then set out to make personal growth happen. When they make that conscious choice, self-limiting beliefs begin to drop away.

At that point, growth momentum and awareness of the self increases and just keeps on increasing. They may not have consciously set out to become a leader, let alone a mindful one, but they end up embodying all the natural traits of a more conscious leader all the same. Then their good example begins to attract leadership opportunities. And as they step into those opportunities, life experiences reveal to them their expanded capacities for mindful leadership and their personal growth expands even more. It’s really a fluid, self-fulfilling, highly-rewarding upward cycle once the starting point is reached!

So, remember: When you decide to stop sitting there wondering when the right opportunity is going to magically arrive on your doorstep and change life your life for the better, and you start taking personal responsibility for creating and directing your own adventure, you’re going to find there is more to life than whatever is currently in front of you. When that happens and your level of self-awareness begins to increase, you will find your purpose. At the very least you will find the starting point for your purpose.

That’s when magic actually does happen! The self-leadership light will spark and ignite your passion. And that’s the beginning of the awakening leader in you. Where self-leadership will take you doesn’t matter. It might take you into completely different circumstances. You may find yourself at the helm of a thriving business. You may find your personal life becoming more fulfilling. Perhaps the single most beneficial thing that happens is you become a happier, healthier human being. You may find yourself speaking at conscious leadership conferences.

It doesn’t matter. What matters is the true you is showing up and leading the show at last!

Be the leader you were born to be

If you want a better world, you are where it begins. And if the idea of stepping into a leadership role in your life scares you, stop and think: Who else in your family is (or was) a conscious leader? Or are you the first? Did your family members struggle with asserting themselves? Were they suppressed? Were your parents unavailable (emotionally and/or physically.) Were they reactive rather than creative in tough situations? Please know that when we are not available it is often because we are in fear and then we become emotionally triggered and reactive. Perhaps they were too fearful to be conscious leaders.

Can you break that cycle? It takes just one person to choose to do it differently. Here are some things you can do to begin building your conscious leadership:

  • Who did you inspire today, including yourself? Keep written track daily!
  • When last did you congratulate yourself for doing something good?
  • Did you take a moment today to notice all the good things that happened? Did you give others and yourself credit?
  • Notice when you are unnerved or unsettled how best you can self-sooth and remain calm.
  • Note each time you do something kind for yourself.
  • Write down the number of times in a day you make someone smile. (Other than yourself!)

These are all things that those big inspirational leaders do—making a difference just by making a little magic. Keep doing these things and watch the compounding effect as the inspirational leader becomes you.

To find out more about how to grow your leadership, attend one of our events this year! For more information about my 2024 events click here.

How Do You Describe Your Leadership Style? 11 Examples

how do you describe your leadership style

How Do You Describe Your Leadership Style? 11 Examples

Leadership is an important piece of who we are, and yet many of us don’t even know we have it. We deny, ignore or flat out don’t know that part of ourselves. We all display our leadership one way or another in different situations. So, how do you describe your leadership style and what different leadership styles are there?

Perhaps your leadership qualities show up as a mother or father, as a sibling, mentor, teacher, friend, or elder. If you lead in the business arena perhaps you help create a positive work environment as a line manager or as a C suite executive or motivated associate leading team members.

Surprisingly, the shape of your leadership has its roots in your family system, but its wings rely upon your inner spark and your core values. Leadership is often coupled to your purpose in life. It’s about the positive impact that naturally tends to show up in various ways, flowing from the space beyond limiting family cycles and the small thoughts you have about yourself.

The shape of your leadership doesn’t have to be big, fancy, dramatic or over the top—you don’t have to run for president or anything. But stepping up expands your full potential and affects others by opening them up to the bigger picture as well as common goals and shared vision. This realisation creates true leaders.

Plenty of ways

Leadership lives with one foot in the world of possibility. In other words, your personal leadership position is part of the chapter that only you can write.

Just like any other aspect of your life, the shape and expression of your leadership or lack of it begins at home. The starting point begins with where and how you show up in your family system. For example, some of us had to take on a leadership role early in life if a parent was missing or struggling, or if dire circumstances led to us having to step in and step up.

Some of us learned the exact opposite—to melt into the shadows in various ways when situations caused us fear or maybe even hide to survive. Perhaps a sibling needed more attention, and we became the good kid and stepped back so that they could get what they needed and so we became invisible. And yet that “stepping up” spark is still there, waiting to be seen and chosen. Waiting for us to overcome our fears and reluctance and step forward rather than vanish.

Your decisions about what happens to you in your life, your thoughts feelings and actions, or inactions all shape your leadership qualities and leadership strengths—your leadership DNA. They shape the leader you choose to be. As well, they shape the leader you abandon at your and others’ cost.

Good example

There is a coach in the NFL who came from dire circumstances. By all rights, this man should have become a violent gangster and yet he chose to rise at every point and build strong relationships and create a positive impact instead. He didn’t fault the parents who raised him.

He reasoned that they had done the best that they could, and it was his job to take the next step to rise to his fullest potential. He also used his upbringing to connect to kids from troubled areas and teach them problem-solving skills. He taught them that they were not victims and that they had a choice to break limiting cycles and rise up within their own communities.

First step

At some point in our lives we have to ask ourselves if we are going to bury the leader within or let it shine through whatever leadership roles seem natural. And when we decide to let it shine, that’s where we start to take charge of our own lives.

When you awaken the leader within, you begin to focus more on what’s possible and having a shared vision. You find you have more of an appetite for life embracing a bigger picture.

What’s actually happening is that you are finally creating an adventure that’s bigger than where you may be stuck.

If you aren’t sure what your style of leadership is or what kind of leader you could be, contemplate your heart’s desire. That is the inner leader waiting to be unleashed by you and what makes a great leader. And remember, you don’t have to lead the world or a basketball team either. Leading, for you, may be setting an example to others by taking a step in the direction of actualizing your dreams, thus motivating others to do the same. This is how to discover your best leadership style.

Help with the decision-making process

If you find yourself lost, stuck, or struggling. If you really can’t see the leader within, or see the type of leadership style that resonates with you, ask yourself the following questions:

  • “Do I know that I have this inner leadership?”
  • “When did I make a decision that I was/was not a leader?”
  • “What thoughts, feelings and actions do I take to make that true?”
  • “What does that decision cost/give me?”
  • “Where would I like to shine?”
  • “Where am I too afraid to shine?”
  • “What am I really good at?” Pro tip – kindness, generosity and inspiration are strong leadership qualities.

Deep inside, everybody is a leader but many of us suppress that desire to get out there and be the biggest version of ourselves possible. We watch movies and then we wish we were the superhero, all the while ignoring the inner prompt to be exactly that in our own lives.

How good does it feel when you accomplish a task or a dream? Once you start doing and it becomes a habit, your leadership comes out to play. Your “can do” kicks in and so does your life adventure.

Some of us may feel that we have never had the leadership skills, or that the term “good leader” doesn’t even vaguely apply to us. And yet in those quiet moments when we wish we could be a good leader … or do something bigger with our lives … the leader is sitting right there along with all the necessary resources waiting for you to take the first step forward.

Just one new thought “I can.” Or “I am going to do _____” begins the shift. One new feeling locks it in, and one new action begins the journey.

Real-life examples

The question really isn’t if you are a leader, it’s what kind of a leader are you? Are you a hidden leader? A reluctant leader, an absent leader? A dramatic leader, a fearful leader? Do you have an autocratic leadership style or an authoritative leadership style? Or is transformational leadership or coaching leadership style more your thing?

How do you describe your leadership style? Below are several of the most common styles of leadership to help you get started. Look and see which one most closely fits you.

Atlas leader – Carries the load for everybody. (Thought: How many mothers or fathers out there would qualify for this?) Do you carry too much for those around you? Are you aware that in doing so you limit the discovery of the potential of those whom you carry?

Team leader – Shares the load and empowers others to find their own way in the world. Shares the ups and the downs and everybody grows.

Crisis leader – Really good during emergencies. (Thought: Are you the person who is super good during a crisis, or do you inadvertently create them?) Is there constant drama in your life? Are you always rescuing or needing to be rescued or pointing out flaws or inflating situations? Do you realize that this may create neediness or unnecessary drama and stress?

Centered leader – Also really good during emergencies. Relaxes or becomes focused and centered. Brings a state of peace and capability to the situation. Always creates a positive work environment and helps others develop problem-solving skills.

Whirlwind leader – Goes in several directions at once but doesn’t complete a project. (Thought: Such leaders often want to be perceived as saviors but instead create chaos and exhaustion.) Are you someone who starts well but doesn’t finish well? Are you aware that nobody gets a win this way? Not even you?

Calm leader – The opposite of a crisis or whirlwind leader, these leaders can project a sense of calm no matter what. (Thought: Calm leaders don’t shoot from the hip. They consider all aspects thoughtfully and make a deliberate decision.) Are you or have you been in the presence of a calm leader? How did it affect you/others?

Driving leader – Pushes associates constantly for more, better, different. (Thought: These leaders expect a lot of their associates but often lose them to burnout.) Are you someone who pushes others to their limits “for their own good?” How do you know what their own good is?

Invitational leader – The opposite of a driving leader, these leaders invite others to step up into their fullest potential. (Thought: Such leaders encourage creativity and failing up. They tend to be glass-half-full leaders.) Have you ever noticed how invitation offers those around you a chance to open up and step up?

Hands-on leader – This leader is very involved with day-to-day operations. They feel that they should roll up their sleeves like anyone else, but sometimes too much. (Thought: Such a leader is often “in the weeds” concerned that the sky may fall if they’re not there.) Are you aware that a hands-on leader may stunt the growth of others if they take over too much? 

Delegating leader – They are hands on but only when needed. Knows when to step in and when to step out and empowers others to find their own solutions.

Hands-off leader – This leader believes that everyone is their own boss and leaves them to get on with things. (Thought: These leaders tend to issue a blanket project and assume everyone knows how to tackle it. Then they are confused when everybody seems to flounder.) Have you ever wondered why those around you are confused, do the wrong things, or feel they are unable to ask for clarification? This may be why.

Available-as-needed leader – This leadership approach is not in the weeds but is available to consult or even go there as needed. They inspire confidence in others and foster a sense of pride.

Parent leader – The big papa or mama bear leader. (Thought: In companies where everyone is treated like a family member, it is very clear who the parent is and who the children are.) Did you have to step up at an early age and take over for one or both parents? Have you never stepped down? Are you aware that you are treating those around you like children—which means they can never grow up? Are you absolutely exhausted by the weight you carry yet unable to set it all down for fear something bad might happen?

Empowering leader – These leaders acknowledge the strengths of others and do not need to be the mother or father figure. They don’t make others small, encouraging them instead to rise to the occasion in different situations and grow their own wings.

Inspirational and visionary leader – This leader does a lot of their own self-development resulting in heightened creativity and followership. (Thought: These leaders are determined, purpose driven, goal oriented, and inclusive. They build strong relationships. They don’t want to do the whole adventure themselves but are inspiring enough for others to take the journey with them.)

What will it take for you to invest in yourself as a leader who inspires and motivates? What difference could that make?

There are many levels of leadership which we will discuss in more depth at another time.  Looking through this list you may find that more than one applies to your leadership style. Each has its pros and cons, and each has the potential for growth.

How you lead matters – not just to those around you but to you. You might ask yourself where your leadership style originated and how you can evolve it. This is the best approach to helping your discover your leadership style and thrive.

At the crux of it all is this. You have the leader within. You have always had it. If you haven’t activated it yet, now is a good time to start. Sometimes when we won’t self-activate it may take a crisis to press the on button which is a whole lot less fun.

Take the time to listen to the part inside you that longs to be…and then start moving in that direction. Not only for yourself but for those around you and those who come after you. Leadership is a door to the life you dream about…open the door!

I look forward to showing you how to unleash your fullest potential and discover your leadership abilities.  For more information about my 2024 events click here.

Why Does Leadership Matter? Being an Effective Leader

Arrows pointing up on a navy blue background

Why Does Leadership Matter? Being an Effective Leader

Why does leadership matter? Well, showing up and being fully YOU (which is the mainstay of leadership) not only serves your family, your community, and your work environment, but it also is the best way to keep vibrantly alive, creative, optimistic, and totally involved in your own life adventure long term.

Leadership Matters

Whether you are aware of it or not, anytime you take responsibility for evolving an aspect of your life you are taking a new course and being a leader.

At its simplest, leadership is how the world expands and goes to a higher level. And it does so through you and every other person who, through much effort and a willingness to uncover the deepest self, takes that self to the next higher level over and over again.

Being a leader involves dealing with your emotional responses to a variety of situations, getting intimate with the right questions and identifying your wants and needs—then figuring out how to make them happen. By leading yourself, taking the next step, finding creative solutions to complex problems over and over, you end up making a substantial difference, not just in your own life but in the world around you.

Clear vision

Leadership brings opportunities, adventures, and learnings. It gifts you a competitive advantage.

When you are passive and do not take responsibility for your own growth and develop self-leadership skills, you are more likely to blame others for your lack of opportunity, unsatisfying work environment, and overall absence of hope. But if you step up when you see a gap, a lack, or an opportunity, not only will you fill that gap and address that opportunity, but you will begin shaping the world around you into the way you would like it to be.

Every single human being has the spark of leadership potential within them and can become a true leader. The question is whether they activate that inner spark or not. The external circumstances—the family and social and work environment—do not matter. You don’t need to research leadership development programs or take a transformational leadership course. Great accomplishment and solid leadership can be developed anywhere, anytime. Here’s an example.

A most significant impact

I was raised in South Africa. I have seen how difficult it is in developing nations for students graduating from high school to find jobs and growth opportunities. Often, in many situations like this, it’s easy for young people to develop their leadership potential by taking on negative leadership roles, running guns or smuggling drugs.

I remember one group of about 30 students with nothing but time on their hands and an absence of hope who ended up choosing to turn all the obstacles they faced into opportunity. Determined to do something good for the public sector with their time, they decided to fill all the potholes in the streets around where they lived until the area that was once derelict and unsafe became cleaner and drivable.

Pretty soon family members and the senior leaders in the community started to follow their lead. This led to a string of other community projects unfolding. Word got around and suddenly the group found themselves in the spotlight being interviewed by different people, including international media networks. This resulted in scholarships for each of the 30 young people and the promise of a job offer to each one upon graduation from college.

Talk about creating something from nothing! Talk about a great accomplishment of solid leadership! Somehow these young people realized that they had what they needed to begin a journey of great social value. They found common goals that tapped their inner leadership and leaned on their sense of altruism and servant leadership that ended up inspiring millions. They threw their whole selves into making a difference.

Next Step

What you tell yourself about who you are and what you can do makes a substantial difference. It’s part of being a leader. Leaders talk themselves and their communities into bigger possibilities. They are not victims. Instead they see opportunities where none seem to exist.

Look around. Do you like what you see in your family? In your school or business? In your community. Your country? And if you don’t like what you see, what can you do to change it?

Here are a few things to get you thinking:

  • Write down a time when you were a leader of some sort.
  • Describe the event. It can be as simple as playing “Follow the Leader” as a kid. Were you always a follower, or did you always try to lead? Or was there a balance?
  • How did it feel when you led? Leadership is often ignited by a decision about an event. Have you always been that way? If not, when did that start for you and what was happening for you at the time?
  • How did it feel when you followed?
  • Now that you are an adult, where and how do you play follow-the-leader? Or do you lead? Under what circumstances?
  • Do you wait for opportunity to come to you? Or do you identify opportunities and “go for it,” showing others the way?
  • Write down your thoughts, feelings, and actions around these questions.

Next, write down something you would like to have happen that will require you to lead the way—if only lead yourself!

  • How will doing this affect you?
  • How will it affect those around you?
  • What new skillset do you need to develop to make this thing happen?
  • What one new thought, feeling, and/or action can you take to start actualizing what you’d like to have happen?

Leadership matters. Own yours!

I look forward to showing you how to unleash your fullest potential and discover your leadership abilities.  For more information about my 2024 events click here.

How to Make Happiness a Habit – Simple Tips to Being Happy

Lady smiling holding a yellow balloon with a smiley face

How to Make Happiness a Habit - Simple Tips to Being Happy

Very few of us are taught to make happiness a habit. In fact, the very idea of making it a daily routine is a little strange. But developing a happiness habit is one of the biggest secrets to creating good health and a more satisfying life.

Positive emotions are what help you to find and stay on the path to success – whatever that may look like for you. Obviously, happiness is a feeling that’s right up there near the top of the positive emotions ladder. It’s the juice that you need to help build resilience, develop courage, and firm up your commitment to make meaningful changes happen.

A Tool for Creating Emotional Well-Being

Happiness is one of the emotions that turns on our creative brain. It encourages us to imagine and take risks. Happiness also helps us to identify goals that are in alignment with the type of change we want to make happen.

Having good intentions and making resolutions are all fine and dandy. But do those good intentions and resolutions you’re making light you up? Do they jazz you? Or are you trying to set them in motion because they fit in your comfort zone? Because people on social media advocate them? Because you’ve heard good things from different people about them? Or are those good intentions flowing from your personal north star?

Here’s a simple exercise to help you find out:

  1. Write each one of your intentions on a single piece of paper
  2. Place those papers on the floor — make sure there is enough room to keep them a good distance apart
  3. Slowly walk about the room and notice your feelings as you approach each different intention
  4. Do you feel lighter in a good way as you approach your proposed new habit? Or heavier? Or blasé? Are you a happier person just thinking about developing that new habit? Do you feel a sense of accomplishment is just waiting for you if you go there? If so, then you know you’ve hit on something you can easily weave into a daily routine that is guaranteed to bring more positive things into your life, increasing your levels of happiness.

Healthy Habits, Bad Habit - They Take the Same Energy

For many of us, the idea of deliberately setting out to make happiness a habit sounds contrived or like a lot of hard work. That said, I would like to point out that sadness and anger and other attitudes that erode your emotional well-being take equal amounts of time and effort to keep them in play. They’re also an excellent way to create mental health issues and other bad things in your life.

Positive emotions are truly a matter of choice. But we have to make it a regular exercise to pay attention to our emotional state and then do the hard work of focusing on positive things instead of bad things. Even if you’re going through a hard time and happiness may seem out of reach now, you can still take steps and do little things over the short term to make a difference.

An Easy Way to Develop a Positive Mindset

For example, here is something to give you hope: If you can find something to be happy about for just 17 seconds a day it will start wiring the happiness habit into your brain. Imagine that! Even in the midst of a hard time, if you can make it a daily habit to set aside just 17 seconds a day to focus on good things—no matter what that might be for you—you will start having a return on your investment within just three weeks.

How? Because happiness floods your body and brain with endorphins—those “feel good” chemicals that are life’s easy way to improved mood and better brain function. By doing little things—like making 17 seconds of positive thoughts and positive emotions a daily habit—you are wiring your body for good health.

Sometimes different things to focus on that can make a big difference are as small as remembering that you are alive. Or that you have a good degree of physical health. Or it’s a sunny day. Or the gas tank in your car is full. If you have a pet, you have instant happiness underfoot at all times, just waiting to happen!

Sometimes just by giving a little something of yourself makes all the difference. How about smiling at someone as you walk past? Or letting someone cut in front of you in traffic? Or holding the door open for someone? Even doing such little things you feel the warmth of that moment of kindness translating into a little sense of happiness.

Another pro tip is to look at any situation, no matter how difficult, and find the good in it. Practice gratitude. Instead of living by the biology of stress, you are consciously creating a pathway to health and success.

Good Things Come From the Right Habits

Before you dismiss all this, let me tell you, from personal experience I know that by applying the lens of happiness—even for just shorts bursts of time—hope is able to stay alive, and possibility can come knocking on your door in surprising ways.

When my mom was diagnosed with cancer, my world imploded. I had to make some very conscious decisions about being happy. There were many days that I came home from the hospital too tired to even think straight let alone make happiness a habit or practice gratitude for even the little things. Some days I just wanted to give up.

But I was lucky. I have two warmly affectionate cats. They were always around waiting to give me some love. My daughter made it a point on a daily basis to call with little things to say that uplifted my mood in surprising ways. My two nieces and friends were always around, making themselves available to get me through a bad day.

At first, all of those things and people felt like a nuisance. They felt like a distraction from the present moment—and every present moment I thought I should be dedicating to focusing on the physical health of my mom. Until I figured out, that to help my mom I needed to help myself by uplifting my own emotional wellbeing and physical health as well.

At that point, I finally realized that all of those blessings of people and animals in my life were a great source of happiness and the way I could start to practice gratitude. It was a discipline and a choice, but I could allow myself to build happiness within myself even during these dark circumstances. Especially during those dark circumstances and bad days.

I knew I needed to focus on positive emotions and start making it a habit to find ways to evoke those positive emotions, not only to survive, but to cheerlead my mom and to help her to feel that life was good and filled with possibilities as well.

The Present Moment

It is a great truth that the present moment is a gift—a present just waiting to be delivered to your doorstep. Circumstances can, and will, change your life—sometimes from one heartbeat to the next. But the same is true of the attitude and thoughts you create around those circumstances.

Only if you make it a regular exercise to stay present will you be able to find the space and the opportunities around you to stop worrying and be happy—if only for the short term. How do you do that? Well—again, often it’s about the little things. Sometimes you can find solace and new ways of uplifting yourself by being grateful for what is not happening in your life. You’re not under too much pressure at work. Thank you! You’re not having to worry about money. Thank you! New friends have shown up and you’re no longer as lonely as you were. Thank you!

New Ways to Get Over a Bad Day

You’ve certainly heard about the effectiveness of having an attitude of gratitude. Personally, I like addressing the altitude of the attitude of gratitude. So, what on earth does that even mean? Well, especially when I’m going through a hard time, I make it a daily habit to push the happiness needle. It’s actually become a fun game for me.

At some point during a bad day, usually when everything is hitting the fan, I stop and ask myself, “What has gone right so far today?” Yes, sometimes my inner self asks my questioning self if I’m crazy even bothering to ask the question. Yet, if I stop and get into the present moment and pay attention, I can usually find at least a half a dozen things that have gone right, even in the midst of a disaster.

And then there is the seriously fun process I call micro-treating.

Exercise: How to Micro-Treat Your Way to a Happier Life

  • Write down all the little things that make you happy. It could be as simple as petting the cat, eating a piece of chocolate, or stopping at the coffee shop on the way home from work and getting your favorite iced specialty drink.
  • Make sure that you sprinkle some of these little things into every single day. At the very least do some on a regular basis. Add them to your calendar if need be.
  • Really notice when you are micro-treating yourself and be sure to pat yourself on the back for doing this. You are NOT being self-indulgent! You are taking really good care of yourself by creating a positive mindset this way, and that should make you happy too!
  • Sometimes you may want to splurge. If there is a movie that you really want to see or an activity that you really want to do, plan that into your calendar too.
  • Congratulations! You are well on your way to teaching yourself that even in the worst circumstances there is happiness you can count on creating for yourself. And remember: If there is an emotional DNA piece in your family (a family pattern) around happiness/unhappiness, your being happy may just be the antidote to the family’s bad habit of unhappiness.

You are far, far bigger than the circumstances of your life. It is time to embrace your happiness and unleash your destiny. You can change your thoughts, change your feelings, change your life, and change the lives of those around you. You can move mountains if you choose. It all starts when you decide to make happiness a habit.

I look forward to showing you how to unleash your fullest potential and discover your superpowers.  For more information about my 2024 events click here.

11 Steps to Creating Positive Change in Life & Thriving

11 Steps to Creating Positive Change in Life & Thriving

We all want positive change in our lives. But most of us think that life is coming at us or happening to us. Often the idea of creating positive change is out of our control. We work hard to go beyond the status quo, but when change doesn’t happen, instead of figuring out a better way and implementing new ideas, it’s easier to think that it’s other peoples’ fault and fall into the blame game. We figure we just aren’t lucky and stay stuck in our comfort zone.

The fact is, luck doesn’t just happen. You choose it. When you ask yourself what you really want, create clear goals, and take the small steps to move beyond the current situation and finally affect positive change, you realize at a very deep level that YOU are the creator and driver of your own adventure.

There’s More to Life & You Create It!

Have you ever noticed that there are some people in ordinary jobs who do better than others and turn out to be success stories? They do well financially, have a better life than most, and seem to be happy. But what is different about them?

They understand how to find happiness within themselves. They know how to make a plan of action and use it to motivate themselves to go after their north star, make the needed changes, and go get those dreams. They are aware that the quality of their interactions with others matter. They understand that creating positive change within themselves results in those better relationships and improved finances.

These are the people who go the extra mile, who do just a little more, who boost friends with a smile. People around them feel seen and understood. Negative feelings vanish. Everybody wants to be part of their game. They become role models.

No Victims Here!

These are the kinds of people who have stumbled onto another important building block for success in their personal and professional lives. They somehow know that it doesn’t matter where you come from or what your circumstances are, that it doesn’t matter whether you know the “right people” or have the greatest support network. They know they have the ability to create a happy mindset – even in the worst situations when negative people are all around them.

Such people are always in “choice.” They choose happiness and make it a habit. They set good intentions and create a plan of action. They also tend to be highly resilient and can shift and make needed changes, learning new skills when necessary. Not only do they maintain a glass-half-full attitude, they have learned that the empty space in the glass is exciting because it is theirs to fill!

Taking Positive Steps

Things happen in life. But that doesn’t mean you need to cave to circumstances and negative feelings. You look at heroes in the movies and wish you could be like that too. And the fact is, of course you can! You are capable at any point in your life of creating meaningful changes when you choose it consciously.

Set goals, create an action plan. Be willing to move out of your comfort zone. It’s the time of year for a fresh start and New Years’ resolutions. Make some! Your good intentions and hard work will get you all the way to your goal. You just have to take the first step and start walking.

All those self-help books you’ve been reading are wonderful, but now it is time to do something with that knowledge and make the needed changes. Unless you start applying what you’ve learned, and create a sense of urgency for change, they will just stay nice ideas stuck in a book someplace on a forgotten shelf. And that’s defintiely not the right path to take, now is it?

11 Steps to Creating Positive Change - How to Make Successful Changes

The secret to creating meaningful change in your life is all about feeling it. So, the first thing I want you to do is to identify something you would like to achieve. Is it a better life? More free time? More love in your life? More money? A sense of real success?

Be sure that what you choose makes you feel strong emotions—desire, happiness, excitement, a sense of urgency. This is part of the energy that will get you motivated and carry you past the first step. Now:

  1. Identify all the reasons standing in the way of you doing what you desire.
  2. Burn them or tear them up.
  3. Take the time to identify 10 steps that you think will facilitate you getting to your goal. (Yes, it sounds like a lot, but most of you will need that many!)
  4. Write them down.
  5. Understand that the steps will not always be in sequence.
  6. Understand that no step is too small. A small step is still a step towards your goal!
  7. Make sure that all the steps you write down take you towards your goal, not away from it.
  8. Set a timeline for accomplishing your first step.
  9. Congratulate yourself on each step that you accomplish. (This is what all champions do. It’s one of the main reasons that they get results.)
  10. No trash talking. If negative feelings come up, acknowledge them and then move on.
  11. When you achieve your goal, acknowledge it, celebrate it, and share it if appropriate.

Congratulations! When you do this exercise and take these steps seriously, you will be well on your way to creating the better life you’re intending for yourself. You simply have to show yourself that it’s possible.

Now … identify your next action plan and goal! Once you’ve taken the steps and made things happen for youself, no matter what might stand in your way, there’s a real fire of excitement that builds. And you’re building it. Remember, the passion of desire can move mountains!

Be sure that what you choose makes you feel strong emotions—desire, happiness, excitement, a sense of urgency. This is part of the energy that will get you motivated and carry you past the first step. Now:

What Next?

The point of this exercise is to show you how capable you really are when you consciously identify what you want and take action to achieve it. To lock in and ramp up the magic of the exercise above and teach yourself to consistently create the life you want, I suggest two action plans.

Option 1: We all like gold stars. Get yourself a journal and dedicate a page to each step that you’ve identified. As you complete each step, give yourself a gold star and write down how you felt about achieving that step.

Option 2: Buy a book that holds business cards—you can get them at any office supply place. Write down each step on a piece of paper. As you complete each step, fold up that piece of paper and put it into one of the card holders. Write down any thoughts and feelings about that step and place them in the same holder.

These actions help you build a treasure map directing you toward positive change. They also provide you with tangible evidence that you are on your way. And at the completion of each goal you set, give yourself 5 stars. (At least!)

I look forward to showing you how to unleash your fullest potential and discover your superpowers.  For more information about my 2024 events click here.

Limiting Belief Examples

Same thing goes with other examples of systemic language. Every profession, every club, and every sport have their insider lingo. Culturally, we  taught a lot of catchy phrases, like “No pain, no gain.”  (Thank you, Jane Fonda.) Or “Only the good die young.” (Thank you, Billy Joel.) But what a terrible, unconscious patterns to learn to live by! 

Sure, there are positive cultural influences. For example, we’re schooled to believe that developing successful habits and successful thinking is how to be successful in life.  But we just can’t escape the less healthy cultural influences. A client of mine, Joe, has two boys. He also has a big heart and is easily touched by kindness and even unkindness. He has been careful to model emotional availability to his sons. And yet, recently, when they all were watching a movie and he found himself moved to tears, he was surprised when his oldest boy admonished him, saying “Dad, men don’t cry.” 

Joe knows where that comes from, he’s been told it all his life.  He also knows that he is strong and successful. And yet he still feels a little shame when he does cry. He asked me, “Is it possible to be fully male and strong and yet cry?”  

I said, “Of course! you just have to keep challenging this commonly held, but erroneous assumption, whenever it rears its head. When you do this, not only does it change the situation for you, but for your sons and other men as well.”

How to Change your Thoughts and Feelings ... and Your Life

As we speak so we think and feel. We are teaching our brain to tell our body a story it can believe. When we change a language pattern, we change our thoughts and emotions. Let’s take money as an example. Many of us speak, and thus believe and act, in alignment with money patterns already in existence.  For example, we’re taught that having money is vitally important. We’re also taught that having money is bad, wrong, and greedy. We hear the words, “Money is the root of all evil.” 

Yikes! How to create a positive mindset around money with those kinds of conflicting truths?

The difference between those who struggle materially and those who succeed does NOT just hinge on their environment or circumstances. It rests, in very large part, on the systemic language and multigenerational family patterns they inherit and embody. It also depends on your willingness to change limiting systemic language and implement the power of positive words.

Give your Money DNA a Boost

 

If you have “money issues,” start carefully monitoring how you talk about money. How often do negative money sayings crop up in your mind? How often do you find yourself saying, “Oh, I can’t afford that” or “I wish I could afford that”?

Your money DNA can be changed by asking yourself a simple question: “What if something different is possible? What if I could afford it?” Right there, you’ve opened the door to a whole new possibility.

Do you judge people who have money? Stop it. Instead, find inspiring examples of people who are addressing some of the world’s problems precisely because they have accumulated wealth, been wise stewards, and can put money to good use. 
 
What happens if you begin to view money with respect and even affection?  What happens if you say (gasp) “I love money” or “Money and I are good friends!” When you do this—when you change your systemic language around money—you are rewiring your brain AND your life. Imagine that? You are able to change your financial circumstances one new thought, one new feeling, and one new action at a time.
 
And if you find yourself thinking this kind of simple change won’t make a difference to your finances, I challenge you to look at your limiting systemic language and put one new thought, feeling and action around money into play for one month. Also look out for other kinds of sabotaging thoughts/language/actions, like, “Nothing I do ever works.” Or “It would take an Act of Congress to change my financial situation.”)
 
Systemic language is HUGE.  Changing your language can help you rewire your brain for success and change your money mindset. Explored and employed consciously, you can begin crafting and more fulfilling and exciting life.
 
Elevate your money mindset! Join me at our special Disney World event November 5-8, 2023. 
 
For more information click here.
 

Breaking Generational Patterns and Learning how to Enjoy Christmas Again

Breaking Generational Patterns

Breaking Generational Patterns and Learning how to Enjoy Christmas Again

Okay, maybe you don’t celebrate Christmas or any holidays. But the holiday season can still be filled with stress, rush, overindulging, disappointment, family conflict, and stress followed by a major sigh of relief when it’s all behind us. Even our holiday movies are filled with family catastrophes before they end in happiness. This is an ancient global meta pattern. But can breaking generational patterns help us to find joy at this time of the year?       

The holidays—whether you celebrate them or not—often times are when ancestral pain and multi-generational patterns are on full display. Yet, the potential for having fun during this time of year is enormous. All you have to do is take a look at things a little differently and learn how to deal with family stress and other triggers during the holidays

The happy mindset

In the West, the holidays are designed and expected to deliver a happy mindset and miracles. In fact, it is the one time of the year when a large number of people around the world—including non-Christians—are not resistant to great things happening. For example, soldiers putting down their rifles, crossing enemy lines, and joining one another in festive celebration for the day.

Why don’t we teach ourselves to take advantage of that?  If we tune into that energy—the energy capable of remapping the brain for peace and brotherhood—creating the rewired brain, we stand a really good chance of creating a great festive season and delivering some miracles of our own.

In place of glum duty, we can consciously create benevolence, generosity, fun, and laughter. Having to go to Aunt Sally’s house for a turkey dinner can turn into an adventure. Even if you’re a vegan, you can still create a special dish everybody can enjoy. (Including you!) Now, suddenly, by expanding yourself there is a little more happiness in you and in the world. You’ve had one new thought (the special dish), you’ve also had one new feeling (excitement), as you’ve taken a new action (creating and bringing the dish). 

The secret habits of happiness

Doing little things for ourselves and others is one way we evolve our happiness quotient. It isn’t about huge steps at a time, although it can be if you choose. It can be something as simple as noticing what’s going well even in the most difficult moments.

How to find happiness within yourself is a process starting with one new thought, feeling, and action at a time. Building on that step-by-step process, you begin to create strong relationships and joy. You begin rewiring and remapping the brain—your brain. Now a continuation of your sad or disappointing life is no longer the inevitable future.

Once you take this magical journey with commitment, it becomes very clear that you are not a victim, but a co-creating master of your own life and quite capable of unleashing the miracle of a happy mindset any time of year, any time you want, for any reason you choose.

Happily excited

The miracle of the holidays is that they call for the best in all of us to show up, take action, and offer a chance to make happiness a habit, not just something that happens at a set time of year. If you choose, you can make the entire year—your entire life—a festive season where you look forward to living every day, happily excited to be on this earth, capable of anything. Even turning a dreadful holiday dinner with Aunt Sally into a feast everyone can enjoy.

How to build a happy life

Want to know how to build a happy life? One way is to treat everyday like a holiday, a holy/wholly day where you unleash your joy and embrace life fully, simply because you can.

A good way to begin is by asking yourself what’s possible and “How can I make a positive difference?” There are opportunities every single day to be kind, to smile, to listen or to offer a helping hand. Most of these actions don’t cost a penny, but they make all the difference to others, to ourselves, to our own peace of mind, and to our relationships.

The more you invest in creating your own magic, the less entangled you are in multi-generational shackles. And this festive season is the perfect time to begin writing your own new chapter.

Quick exercise:

  • What one limiting thing do you say, think, or feel about the holiday season?
  • When did that start for you?
  • What was happening in your life at the time?
  • Is that still true?
  • Does it serve you?
  • Is it time to change that story?
  • What one new thought, feeling, and action can you take to begin activating a happy mindset no matter what time of year it is?
  • Contemplate the difference that will it make to you and those around you.

Remember, your happiness quotient is truly in your own hands. And it all starts with breaking generational beliefs and patterns—no matter what sets them in motion. 

This year I want to challenge you to consciously build your happiness mindset starting with this festive season. Notice what one thing you can do to contribute to the miracle of rewiring your brain to think your way to better patterns and a happier more fulfilled life.

I look forward to showing you how to unleash your fullest potential and discover the superbeing in you.  For more information about my 2024 events click here.

How to Move Forward in Life When you Feel Stuck

How to move forward in life when you feel stuck

How to Move Forward in Life When you Feel Stuck

Learning how to move forward in life when you feel stuck can at times feel overwhelming. Most of us don’t learn how to stop holding onto the past.  Something happened to us early in our lives that has us stuck, and we can’t move forward out of anger, fear, confusion, sadness or maybe bitterness. 

Or perhaps something happened to a family member in the past and we inherited family trauma. A high percentage of the time we have good justifications for feeling the way we do—especially if we’re dealing with ancestral pain. 

But here’s the one simple question to ask yourself about all this: “Am I really enjoying holding onto the past? Does it feel good being stuck?”

Chances are the answer is “No.” But you might feel safe in the misery because being miserable has become so familiar. And you might feel safe because you feel like you are fitting in by repeating family patterns. But none of it feels good.

Ghosts of Christmas past

Remember Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol and the miserable miser Ebenezer Scrooge? He and his family lost all their wealth in the Napoleonic Wars and he spent his lifetime regaining that lost wealth. But did he have to reject all happiness, warmth and generosity while doing so?

It took a near death experience for dear old Scrooge to realize how much life he was missing out on by carefully nursing his bitter miserliness. What is it going to take for you to stop holding onto things from the past and transform your own wounds? What is it costing you?

That person who wronged you is probably getting on just fine with their life. If you’re waiting for them to open their eyes and realize what they did to you, feel sorry about it, and apologize, you may wind up severely disappointed and embittered. You might waste many many beautiful moments and beautiful days and stewed and been angry over what is basically spilt milk—history—the past—done and over done.

It's up to you to break generational trauma

If you find yourself holding onto the past and old hurts, it’s truly worth checking to see where that originated and what unresolved pattern is waiting to be seen. Once you can see it and give it a place, you no longer need to be stuck. Maybe something happened to an ancestor that was so offensive or traumatic that it created an epigenetic imprint on your family system.

Perhaps somebody cheated your great-grandfather out of the family farm and ever since then the whole family has been suspicious, rejecting everyone who offers assistance and everything that looks like a good deal when it comes along. Maybe there are disputes over land and nobody knows why. Maybe the inherited family trauma has passed down to you and you pinch every penny until it screams, never accepting help from anyone and wonder why.

Maybe that Scrooge pattern is looking for you to finally put down the ancestral pain and allow the happiness, finances, and land ownership to build and flow again. I remember a client of mine who came in near the holidays a few years ago, complaining about “stupid Christmas” and how much he hated it. How everyone in his family just went through the motions, exchanging awful gifts and eating a dreadful Christmas meal before they all, duty done, went their separate ways.

“Pain travels through family lines,” I said. “It’s up to you to break generational trauma. You actually can choose to enjoy Christmas..”

He frowned and said, “That isn’t allowed in my family.”

“Why not?”  I asked.

He had no idea, but after talking with his father he reported that his great-grandmother had died on Christmas Eve. The family had gone through the motions to give the kids a decent Christmas that year. But after that nobody ever enjoyed Christmas again.

Recognizing the pattern of pain and duty that had been passed down through his family system, he saw that he could, indeed, break the generational cycles and change the situation. He dove into Christmas preparations with determination and no small amount of glee. “It was the best Christmas ever!” he declared with a grin at our next meeting. “I did it! Three generations of misery were finally put to rest with a celebration for the ages. I’m already making plans for next year!”

Healing ancestral trauma

We all carry emotional wounds and scars that have traveled through our family line, passed down generation to generation. The thing is, each one of us has a choice. Like Scrooge and like my client, we all have the ability to search out and identify ancestral pain patterns and then consciously move beyond them.

If you truly want to make a difference in the world, it begins with creating your own happiness. And that begins with understanding what lives in your family system and unleashing its hidden potential. When you are willing to look, things are able to change. You are the one your family system has been waiting for.

May all your dreams come true this season, may your hearts truly be merry and bright. And may you finally realize that for that to happen, you must be willing to look, and then shift. Above all, I wish you good shift this holiday season and happy adventuring in the coming new year!

To find out how to move from stuck to happy and thriving, join me at one of my events in 2024.  Our mission is to make the unconscious conscious and the invisible visible, so that you can fulfill your destiny—a happy one! 

Using the Power of Higher Emotions to Accelerate Your Success

Higher Emotions

Using the Power of Higher Emotions to Accelerate Your Success

We all experience what I call lower-level emotions, low frequency emotions that seriously run us, and not in a good way. You know what I’m talking about. Those low vibrational emotions we have that twist our stomachs into knots and keep our thoughts buzzing in our heads like angry bees. 

They’ve been with us since we were small. In fact, both high and low emotions have been with us long before we were even aware of them. Some originated in our ancestral family members generations before us.

It’s the lower-level emotions that keep us sad and stuck, frustrated, afraid, and driven by stress hormones. And then, there are other times when life feels good. Everything flows smoothly. The trees look greener, the flowers look prettier, and we experience a general sense of wellbeing. We are living in the higher emotional states of joy and possibility. 

What causes high and low emotions?

What triggers one or the other? We quite often see that our stress hormones are activated when we are stuck in low vibrational emotions related to an old pattern. Our survival emotions kick in and we become reactive—and not in a good way.

Conversely, when we tap into our higher emotions, like joy, happiness, excitement, love and passion, the opposite happens, and we become creative. Interestingly, our positive inspirations quite often have their origins in the future. 

Visualization for success

We’re not only able to have memories of the past, but we are also quite able to create memories of the future. We call this imagining or visualizing. When we allow ourselves to really go there, visualizing a future self or doing a visualization for success, we unconsciously end up experiencing higher emotions because the imagined future creates emotional excitement inside us. And when we’re experiencing higher emotions, the elevated frequencies enable us to potently impact the quantum field. These are the times when we accomplish the incredible.

The magic of elevated emotions is that they tell the body a story it can believe that is stronger than the current limiting story that you’ve quite possibly inherited from your ancestors.

Elevated emotions provide the juice that takes you past excuses all the way to the finish line. 

Visualize your future self

When we repeatedly and vividly visualize a bright future utilizing higher emotions, we move beyond limiting ancestral patterns and voices that keep us stuck in low vibrational emotions. For example, family sayings like “You have to be practical” and “You have to be sensible” and “Don’t get on your high horse” or get “too big for your britches.”

These are all limiting ways of teaching  to switch our creative brain off and stay small within the confines of dysfunctional family patterns, which in turn allows us to belong to the family and repeat the same old dynamics. So often, when we grow up under disadvantaged circumstances, we are led to believe that this is all there is—that this is our lot in life (and usually somebody else’s fault).

Yet, if we continue to positively use imagination, visualization and higher emotions, our goals get bigger. And with each small or large success, we get bigger as we rewire our brains from limitation to possibility.

Watch talent programs

I’m always struck by those contestants on talent shows who come from harsh circumstances and how they use passion, commitment, and elevated emotions to overcome those obstacles.  Sometimes, when the contestant is asked to talk about their past, many of them crumble and go back into the sadness and struggle that has defined their origins. You can see it in their eyes and body language. The loyalty to the old system and way of being is still there. 

But then watch. It’s when they acknowledge their difficult origins without letting go of the future that the magic happens. They hold onto the positive vision of themselves, and the power of their higher emotions carries these people all the way to the winner’s circle. You can clearly see both old and new patterns at play. 

So, next time you’re tempted to stay stuck, remember that this is a choice. You can put positive emotions in play any time you want. It may take a few steps. It may even take many. But the price of staying stuck is so much harder than the work it takes to elevate yourself.   

Yes, identifying, using, and hard-wiring higher emotions takes practice. But when you make this an integral part of your own evolution, it gets easier and easier. And then it gets to be fun as you see the new changes happening!

Join me at one of my events to learn how to identify, experience and integrate your own higher emotions. To find out more, click here.

How to Develop a Winning Mindset by Celebrating Success

How to develop a winning mindset

How to Develop a Winning Mindset by Celebrating Success

Have you noticed how few people know how to develop a winning mindset? How difficult it is for many people to even accept a compliment?

There’s a really good reason for being unable to accept compliments or acknowledge our success. Typically, this refusal to shine is tied into dysfunctional family patterns that teach us to be self-effacing and to project an odd sort of “humble” demeanor, all the while bursting inside to share all that we are.

A dysfunctional meta pattern

We’re taught growing up that above all, we’re supposed to succeed. And most of us struggle to do just that. Yet as soon as we get there, many of us attempt to hide our success. Why?

Somewhere along the line, humanity decided that being humble meant we should hide ANY signs of success. Either that or at the very least hide any sense of personal pride in our accomplishments. Instead of exuding positive money beliefs, acknowledging success, and developing a winning mindset, we focus instead on how we need to fix things and how wrong we are about this and that. We focus on how to not seem greedy or happy about having money. If that is our day-to-day perceptual lens, success is virtually impossible.

Not only does this do us a disservice, but we also effectively cover up the clues for others to follow. We stop others from learning how to be successful and happy in life through following our example.

All this is the result of a meta pattern in society that basically says, “Don’t brag.” The problem is, this mindset is what is holding you back from achieving your goals because “Don’t brag” is often misinterpreted as “Don’t celebrate success.” But If I can’t feel good about my success. If I feel ashamed of my success and good fortune, why bother trying to succeed in the first place?

Dysfunctional family patterns

Inability to acknowledge your success may feel as though it ensures you belong in your family. Playing small may be familiar and comfortable because your family system prides itself on modesty. Playing down your abilities may make you feel safe because everybody else refuses to shine. But it also equals inability for both you and your system to thrive.

When Natalie came to see me, she was conflicted. Her family stressed the importance of being nice, polite, and humble. Rich people were not to be admired or associated with. But Natalie was a successful CFO who had taken her company all the way through a successful merger, resulting in millions of dollars in her pocket. And yet nobody—even her family—knew she was a multi-millionaire because she never talked about her accomplishments. She was still driving the same old beater car and bargain hunting for clothes like she always had. 

Breaking family patterns

She was actually at the point of deciding whether to give all her money away. When I asked her why she would do this, she said belonging in her family was more important than any financial success. When I asked her whose example she was following—who she was being loyal to—she thought about it and her eyes flew wide.

“Oh my gosh, my father! He came from a family who struggled financially and had negative money beliefs—they thought it was evil. And yet he actually managed to make a fortune. But he never acknowledged his success and ended up carelessly losing it all. He retired broke!”

Natalie was carrying the same pattern of inner thoughts. By not acknowledging her success, she was staying well inside the family pattern and sowing her own seeds of destruction. Breaking the family’s pattern and showing her family how to succeed at work and how to think big hadn’t even occurred to her.   

It was only when she could see the havoc the pattern was wreaking that she could acknowledge her own success and break that family pattern and allow success to belong alongside kindness and politeness. 

Acknowledging success

So, why is the inability to acknowledge success so prevalent?  Well, some of this may originally stem from a need to stay safe.  Back in the bad old days, being super successful also meant you were at risk of being conquered by the next invader and losing everything, including your life.

But now it’s time to learn the importance of celebrating success. Acknowledging success and helping others know how to have a winning mindset and create success creates bigger opportunities for more and more people. More people breaking generational patterns of smallness, means less jealousy and envy, and more collaboration resulting in bigger resource pools and a happier world.

Acknowledging our successes, big or small, is the first step to moving our lives forward—and everyone else’s! When we can imagine the possibilities of celebrating success, teaching ourselves to acknowledge our successes and helping others do the same, we are changing the world. This is how humans grow.

 

Investing in achieving ever-greater goals and expansion, we could set centuries of old patterns of envy and greed aside and be victims no more, but masters instead, setting in motion new patterns of prosperity and possibility.

To unleash your own possibilities and discover the power of acknowledgement and expansion, grab your copy of ‘Decoding Your Emotional Blueprint’. To learn more, click here. 

How to Achieve your Dreams and Goals in Life: Visions of What’s Possible

how to achieve your dreams and goals in life

How to Achieve Your Dreams and Goals in Life: Visions of What's Possible

 In my last blog I mentioned “ghosts” of the past showing up in our lives and discussed how to overcome limiting beliefs. And one of those ghosts I mentioned is the tendency most of us have to only see what’s wrong with us. Growing up, we’re so carefully taught to look for faults and weaknesses to correct and heal that we often don’t acknowledge and appreciate our strengths!

On top of this, we’re raised with  a limited mindset and not taught to daydream. In fact, we’re taught the exact opposite. How many of you were told to “Get your feet on the ground and your head out of the clouds” when you were young? Talk about shutting the door on any visions of what’s possible! Can you see how this could be what is holding you back from achieving your goals?

Between these two dynamics—looking for faults and not being accustomed to daydreaming—when some inspirational speaker comes along and tells us “You can do anything! Anything is possible!” we become our own worst enemies and start looking for all the reasons why everything is impossible and why they are wrong instead.

How to achieve your dreams and goals in life

Shifting your mindset for success means that you must learn to say “Yes!” to life. The difference between most people and the great successes in the world is that people who have created BIG things in the world said “Yes!” “Yes” to their ideas and dreams. “Yes” to their potential. When everybody else was shying away from taking a risk, they allowed themselves to dream large enough and passionately enough to motivate themselves to go all the way.

Their success may not have been a cakewalk, but the desire to achieve their dream was stronger than their fears and doubts. In other words, the draw to adventure (which is what a “Yes!” is), was stronger than the need to play safe and small in a limited mindset.

The thing to realize, is that many times, our excuses, limitations, and blockages are not just ours, they’re inherited patterns from our family—emotional DNA patterns passed down through the generations. Grandpa lost the family fortune speculating, and nobody has dared to risk a dime since. Mom didn’t get to fulfill her dream, so how dare I?  Playing out unconscious family patterns, it’s so easy to miss the adventure of life!

Attain the best mindset for success and dream BIG

One of the first things to do to start building your capacity to say “Yes!” is to identify any limiting thoughts, language and beliefs holding you back. Is “Caution!” a kind of family motto? Is “playing small” a dynamic you can see in other family members? Is always “Blending in and not standing out” encouraged? Be aware of these patterns and realize this might well be what is holding you back from achieving your goals

Breaking limiting beliefs is about realizing that a pattern is just a pattern. It’s not YOU. But you are the one who makes meaning of it.

How to set goals and accomplish them

So, how to get beyond the pattern? Well, the trick is to find a dream or goal inside you—a dream that is large enough to excite you, but not so large that you give up before you begin—and let that dream pull you out of old patterns and into a future that’s uniquely yours.

STEP ONE:

  • Identify a goal that is enough of a stretch that it really excites you. Write it down on a piece of paper and place it at the far end of the room facing inward. Now write down “Where I am now” on a piece of paper and place that at the other end of the room just opposite.
  • Find the place between the two pieces of paper that feels right for you and stand there.
  • Does it feel more comfortable keeping your distance from your dream/goal?
  • Notice your thoughts about your dream/goal.
  • Notice your feelings about your goal.
  • Notice which way you are pulled – closer to the dream or closer to the safety of the pattern of “I can’t” and “Where I am now.”

All the thoughts, feelings, and actions that come up will either stop you from reaching your goal or start you moving in that direction.  With each thought and feeling, notice which way it moves you. The thoughts and feelings that keep you close to “Where I am now” may be tied to inherited behaviors. In Systemic Work & Constellations, we call these the patterns that need to stop. 

The thoughts and feelings that pull you toward your goal will have you moving beyond those patterns, excited to write your own chapter in life. We call this the new pattern that is trying to start through you. The more you feed the thoughts and feelings pulling you towards your dream/goal, the closer you will get. 

STEP TWO:

  • As you’re walking between one and the other, it helps to identify resources and steps to take that will help you to accomplish your dream/goal.
  • As ideas pop into your head, like “Create a website!” or “Check out classes I can take to learn ____,” write each idea on a separate sheet of paper and place those on the floor and use them as steppingstones to your dream/goal.

As you begin to take these action steps, it is super important to celebrate when you have accomplished a steppingstone goal. That gives you a big dopamine hit to the pleasure centers of your brain that helps wire the “winner effect” into place. And it allows your body to have that delicious sense of accomplishment and happiness.

Visions of the future are only possibilities until you agree to them and say Yes!” Then, taking action, they can become your new reality. 

If you are reading this blog, you know that more is possible for you, then please join me at one of my events. To find out more, click here.