Big Life Lessons and Hitting Bottom

Do we really have to hit bottom to learn our big life lessons? Instead couldn’t we simply choose to stop the downward slide a little early and learn the lesson before major damage is done?

Inertia being what it is, we are all in a downward spiral in some area of our life. The big question is what to do about it?

You don’t want to catch a break.

When things were tough my Dad was always hopeful of catching a break. But the trouble with catching breaks is you’re putting your faith in the random generosity of others. Wanting to catch a break is a passive position where you are not in charge of creating your own good. Instead I’d rather know where they are tossing breaks so that I can put myself in position to receive one. Better yet why not make your own breaks?

No pain, no gain is bull.

Instead of catching a break how about you catching you? Once during drunken horseplay with fraternity brothers I fell head first and backwards over a third floor landing. I flipped completely over and somehow reached up at the last minute and grabbed on to a railing to break my fall. To the delight of my fellow inebriated brothers I landed on my feet and they cheered for an encore.

Couldn’t we decide at any time to stop our fall and land on our feet?

Just because we usually wise up after a great deal of struggle and adversity, we aren’t obligated to only learn so dramatically. The trouble with hitting bottom is it’s a long and painful way down. We really don’t have to fall that far to decide that it’s time to change course.

Invite the big lesson.

Most likely our next big lesson has been swimming in and out of our awareness for some time now. We can choose to invite it to surface and then pay attention. Here’s how to consciously look for your big lesson and put it on your plate. Answer these questions.

If I had a big lesson to learn right now, what might it be?

What have others in the same boat learned that could be useful to me?

In which area of my life is my current course simply not working well?

What are five new and different approaches I could try to turn things around?

Big life lessons are there because we have put them there. Some part of us attracts challenging situations so we can realize the life-changing big lesson and move on. But we aren’t obligated to repeat third grade three times to learn our lessons. I think we can even skip a grade by becoming more conscious of our big lessons as they first come into view. Why not grab the bull by the horns the first time it pokes you?

What do you think?

What do you think about hitting bottom and big life lessons?

“Whatever” Sucks – Commitment Rocks

How might your life change if you truly, deeply committed to every decision you made?

Have you noticed that more and more people are trying to skate by with a lack of commitment to anything? Rather than thinking, deciding and committing, many seem to take what they think is the easy way out – avoiding, procrastinating and riding the fence.

The other day my soon-to-be ex-girlfriend dishonored me with a cowardly “whatever” in response to a suggestion I made. “Whatever” really pisses me off. “Whatever” comes across as: “I’m not willing to expend the energy to tell you whether I agree with you or not – you aren’t worth the respect of a considered reply.”

If that’s the case, why not have the guts to simply say so instead of hiding behind the cowardly non-commitment of whatever?

How many of your decisions are made with the no-turning-back determination and commitment of a Viking crew burning their boat?

A decision is a position one reaches after consideration.
A commitment is a pledged course of action that carries the strength of a guarantee.
Yet a commitment is only as good as the decision that preceded it.
When decisions are reached without determination and consideration they are too weak to benefit from the engagement of commitment.
How might your life change if considered every decision and committed deeply to them?
Certainly you’d fail less by being truly committed more often. When we have difficulty keeping our promises to ourselves we often look to make productivity adjustments. But the core issue may go deeper than that. Perhaps productivity and performance problems do not stem from a lack of discipline or accountability. Perhaps the core issue is the decision that preceded the commitment.
Thoughtful consideration and considered, sacred committing every time would result in making far fewer commitments and following-through on far more of them.

There are only two options regarding commitment. You’re either in or out. There’s no such thing as a life in-between. Pat Riley

I wish we all had the benefit of being coached by Mr. Riley. Then so many of us wouldn’t act like there was a third option – indecision.
The failure to make a decision often expends more energy than the work it takes to follow through on one.

When making a career change many are afraid of making the wrong choice. But what we really ought to be afraid of is wasting our lives putting off decisions we know we need to make.

It’s impossible to commit to an unmade decision.

We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same. Carlos Castaneda

As an advocate of work life freedom and happiness through authentic expression, I often see people hesitate to make their move. They hesitate for many reasons but what really stops them is a failure to definitely commit.

There’s no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love. There is only a scarcity of resolve to make it happen. Wayne Dyer

Committing to an original and magnificent dream is a very courageous decision. It’s no less courageous than committing to a lifetime with one man or one woman. Yet this commitment is between your authentic self, and your pledge on how you will serve the world.

Don’t compromise yourself. You are all you’ve got. Janis Joplin

You might ask, how do I find that level of courage? The answer is practice and increased awareness. Do practice telling the truth to yourself about yourself. Make decisions and follow through on every one of them both large and small. Raise your awareness of all the options when deciding. Practice by telling people what you really think of their suggestions. Say no thank you, more often when that’s really what you want. By strengthening our commitment muscle on the little decisions we are more apt to be strong when it really counts.

Strength is a matter of the made-up mind. John Beecher

Here’s the kicker. We all are waffling on something. Our conditioning is to avoid conflict and we mistakenly think we can put off essential decisions. We cannot. We may think that we are can avoid committing by putting off deciding. But we’re fooling ourselves. What we really want is to stand up and follow-through.

What commitment do you most need to make today?

What’s Really Possible?

If you read this blog, you probably believe that most anything is possible. If that’s your belief system, how often do you act as if it’s true? How often do you act on the basis that most anything is possible? Have you ever considered how your life and work might change if you more frequently accepted the possibility of creation without limitation? For those of us who are self-employed a change in perspective is often an essential adjustment.

Earlier in The Missing Key to Success I introduced a former client Joe, who very much needed to expand his perspective of what was possible. Joe was amazed at what he saw by simply keeping the agreement to change his perspective.

Too often we see what we expect to see and what we expect to see is limited by our beliefs of what we think is likely to occur. Thus we often remain within a cycle of manifestation that’s limited by our past.

As a self-employed entrepreneur Joe was concerned about sustaining his momentum.
What Joe didn’t understand before coaching is the incredible power of accountability. Accountability is a built-in benefit of coaching that increases the probability of the client trying out new and different perspectives and actions. Encouraged by the coach’s confidence and enthusiasm, the client will often make and honor agreements that he would not complete on his own. It’s this professional leverage that makes all the difference.

The use of agreements helps to encourage the client to see and do things differently. Life is really not as difficult as we tend to make it. My coaching experience proves that if you believe in and use some very simple concepts, they can make all the difference.

“Any movement works” is one such concept. You need to understand it to believe in it -and you need to believe in it to apply it intentionally. Yet the quickest route to understanding is to actually practice it. That’s where agreements come in.

Getting back to Joe. By seeing things differently and following through with actions, he was able to come to some startling, new found realizations. His most powerful were:
1). My opportunities expand in direct proportion to my expanding awareness and my willingness to look for the good in all situations.
2). Often I would do things because they had worked for others without taking into account how aligned these actions were with who I am.
3). Because some of these traditionally successful actions didn’t fit me, I resisted taking them and that resistance lead to greater self-doubt.

Joe would waste more energy trying to fit a mold that was laid out by others and when it didn’t work he would wonder what was wrong with him. But he wasn’t lacking anything, he just need to take a more authentic approach to building his business.

These realizations came for Joe over a month’s time and we kept adjusting his action and perspective agreements to follow his realizations. As a result, Joe is happier, more prosperous and works fewer hours than he previously did. What’s different? Joe now runs every major work decision past his deepest desires and values. If the new opportunity isn’t a fit he chooses something else. Making right-aligned decisions is the first step in authentic business building.

Joe needed to continue to complete agreements so he could continue to produce different results and come to fresh realizations.

Previously, Joe often sabotaged his progress because he exercised little personal authority. He wasn’t fully conscious of this, but his actions proved that he placed a higher value on methods created by others than on his own understanding. Joe simply needed to get in the habit of asking what new realizations he’d come to, as a result of his different actions. Realizations cement our understanding of new concepts and methods. Observing and noting personal realizations is the second step in authentic business building.

Joe’s newfound authority means he’s actually authoring his own life more often. Now he is following up his realizations with actions that fit. Many times I’ve asked him this simple question that has made a huge difference. What’s one small action step you could complete this week to exploit this realization? The third step in authentic business building is to use methods that combine our personal realizations with the utilization of our inherent strengths and peculiarities.

Authentic business building is a powerful cycle of perspective, realizations and actions that are filtered through a viewpoint of genuine fit. When you are more eager and enthusiastic to take an action, then that action is a better fit for the core you. Action that is a better fit for the core you, increases your probability of success.

Joe wisely continued to make and honor custom agreements that proved that he could rely on his own authenticity. If you’d like to experiment with this authentic business building process, here are some questions to get it moving.

· What agreements can I make that will cause me to see my situation from an expanded perspective?

· What actions can I take that will support that perspective?

· Then after the actions ask: What realizations can I now see that represent new understandings for me?

· Keeping in mind my inherent strengths and values, what action steps could I take that would leverage these new realizations?

As your coach from afar I’m asking you to actually answer that first question and take that action. When we expect to see more opportunities they wondrously appear. Why not give it a shot and amaze yoursel

No Thank You

This post is about being totally above board and honest when turning down an invitation. If you aren’t always truthful when you say no, are you aware of the significance of what you’re saying yes to?

Here’s an example. On Monday, I was tagged. Mags at Woo-Woo Wisdom asked me to write a post on, 10 things that make me happy. I like Mags, I enjoy her writing and I’m honored that she thought of me. But I wasn’t eager to write that specific post. I have nothing against one blogger tagging another and at first I told myself I’d do it later, but I never did.

I did want to understand why I was resisting this honorable invitation. It would be an easy post to write. I’m generally a happy guy and I could easily write 20 things that make me happy.

But one thing that definitely makes me unhappy is doing anything that feels like an obligation.

As much as possible, I’ve pledged to live an obligation-free life and I’ve been doing a pretty good job of it for the last ten years. That means I make as few promises as possible and I follow-through on each and every one of them. How’s my record so far? Very close to 99% on promises I make to others. I’m not doing near as well on self-made promises but much better since I raised my awareness of them.

But it’s not really important to you, why this felt like an obligation to me. What might be important is that you examine how frequently you offer a less than forthright reason when you say, “no thank you.”

Thomas Leonard felt that no explanation at all is necessary.

No is a complete sentence. Thomas Leonard

Sometimes when invited to a social event, that I really don’t want to attend, I’ll just smile and say, “no thank you.” If I’m asked (this seldom happens because folks generally fear the truth) I’ll be honest and tell it like it is, regardless of the imagined consequences.

This feels so freeing. The freedoms of self-determination and self-expression are two that I treasure the most as a self-employed individual. One synonym for integrity, is wholeness and that describes my feelings well. When we align our choices with what we value, we feel complete. Otherwise, by telling even a white lie, we feel a little soiled and broken.

In some ways this was challenging for me to write because I do care about what you my blogging friends and readers think of me. I hope I don’t sound like I’m riding too high of a horse when actually I was forced into becoming more truthful so that I could demand it of my coaching clients.

I’ve come to understand that every honest no means that I’m actually saying yes to something I value.

Could a dishonest excuse be proof that you care more about what another thinks of you, than you value your own freedom of self-determination?

What do you think?

What brings you alive?

What gets your juices flowing and your heart pumping? Whatever it is my friend, are you honoring it?

So what brings you alive? Is it natural beauty, a big hug, taking a risk, driving music, a crisp morning, a touching moment? What brings you alive and are you honoring it often?

Do you know what brings you alive? Do you know what makes your heart sing? Not certain? Then look at the people and activities in your life that are way too small for you.

Anything or anyone that does not bring you alive is too small for you.
David Whyte, from his poem, Sweet Darkness.

What definitely does not bring you alive? What’s killing the core you? Take an honest gaze at what’s killing you and you’ll find what brings you alive.

Another good trail to follow is to look for what you want. Then ask, “What about what I want is enlivening to me?”

Another hint is to look in the opposite direction from prevailing wisdom. Sometimes we’ve got to be radically bad to find the boldness of aliveness. I mean, the heck with what they say. They are way too small for you. Be radically bad and declare your freedom from all those cultural “shoulds” that are weighing you down.

What rocks you at the core of your being?

Here’s another clue. Answer this question about your dreams or big life goals. What matters most to me in my life right now and am I working on it?

Self-confrontation is one doorway to inspiration.

So, my friend, what matters most to you today and what are you doing about it?

Walking this brave path means heartily welcoming all of life. It shouts to life. Bring it on, I’m ready. I am here, I am now and I’m alive!

Often by frequently engaging in smaller aliveness activities we can nudge open the doorway to greater glory and the accomplishment of dreams.

Aliveness is a choice that could move your life from “ho hum” to “ah hah!”

Gratitude, inspiration and enthusiasm are life’s jumper cables. Use them to recharge your aliveness battery.

There is no good reason to refrain from simple pleasures that bring you alive. Rejoice in your peculiarity!

In your comment, tell us three easily engaged in activities that bring you alive.

Mine are:

  1. Laughing out loud
  2. Singing my heart out
  3. Anticipating the first big hit in a rugby match

What brings you alive?

(Image by Rey Nocum on Flickr, via Creative Commons license)

The Missing Key to Success

Have you ever felt like you were so close to the success you wanted but were missing one pivotal piece? What if you could identify that missing piece and make the adjustment, and then all things good would begin to flow to you? What would that be worth?

I once had a client, Joe, who worked his ass off. He was an extremely disciplined individual. Yet he was not getting the business results he wanted. He appeared to be doing everything right. And that was the point. He was doing everything right as far has he could see, but he was not seeing everything accurately.

Often in my life and career coaching practice a client will appear to be doing all the right things, but is still experiencing lack in important career areas. It’s then that I realize the adjustment they need to make is not in their business practices but in their own personal development.

That was definitely the case with Joe. Joe’s perspective was limited to what had worked well for others. That’s a good starting point, but if we really want sustainable success it’s imperative that we bring our own exceptionality forward. Because Joe wasn’t looking in that direction, he didn’t see the possibilities in his own authenticity.

Joe didn’t see it because he wasn’t focused on his inner game. It’s often the inner game where most solo practitioners and entrepreneurs are lacking. The inner game is made up primarily of our ability to squeeze maximum advantage out of our perspective and the energy from the feelings that that perspective gives us.

How we see life and business often determines how they interact with us. It was clear to this coach that Joe needed to make a simple yet powerful “change in perspective” agreement.

Joe’s agreement was to expand his mind to think of ever increasing possibilities in every aspect of his business and life for the next 10 days. The agreement was to increase his awareness of expanded possibilities in both solutions and opportunities. He also agreed to look more for the good in all ways and in all things. He agreed to be open to the possibility that somewhere within his new understanding was his golden thread of success.

If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. Wayne Dyer

You only need a fresh energy trail to follow.

As human beings, we are very resilient. We don’t need to see the final solutions all laid out for us, we just need to feel good in the moment. Often when our hope is expanded just a little, we create enough renewed enthusiasm to carry us for a while.

Just by adjusting your perspective to one of looking for expanded possibilities you can see a whole new array of fresh options that you were once blind to.

What we think determines what happens to us, so if we want to change our lives we need to stretch our minds. Wayne Dyer

All of a sudden you’ll see more good things appearing out of the blue. You’ll begin to consider life and business as a pleasant surprise. Expand your perspective and you too can enjoy delightful work.

If Joe can do it, so can you. In an upcoming post I’ll write about what Joe did to sustain his expansion. But for now, could an inner game adjustment be the missing piece you need to make life easier and business more fruitful? Tell me what you think about expanded possibilities. Dare you make Joe’s agreement in your life? I wonder what good might happen if you did?

What’s Good About Being Challenged?

I just read a powerfully stimulating post by Slade Roberson at Shift Your Spirits. Read his latest post, What’s Wrong with What You Want?
Slade said, “Your most challenging moments are what defines you — your senses of empowerment and spiritual development become most apparent during the tests, trials, and tribulations.”

I believe he’s suggesting that when challenged, we show our true mettle because we are called then to rise up and meet the challenge.

This caused me to wonder. Is challenge natural? We often resist challenge, or at least the struggle that comes with it. But upon further reflection, I wonder if the stimulation within the call to action is what we craved all along. I think this is what we mean when we use the old saying, “It’s all good!”

For example, take the employee who abhors the lack of autonomy in his job. Doesn’t he really love to hate it so that he’ll eventually use the energy of that hate to finally make his move to the freedom of self-employment? Or take the freelancer who wants more work that she loves to do. Doesn’t she complain about the less challenging work so much that she stops the flow of it?

If challenge is natural, perhaps we could save ourselves some stress and struggle by simply making more authentic decisions and committing to following through. Perhaps the more direct route to getting what we want is to embrace the challenging situations in our lives by inviting them, instead of avoiding them.

So how about you? What’s most natural to you? Do you feel more yourself at ease or in action?

Could this change at how we look at challenge actually get us more of what we say we want?

If health and wealth is the natural state of affairs in the universe, then why do so many of us seem to make it so difficult to allow abundance in our lives?

Could it be that we actually want to be tested so much so that we create the necessary drama to rise above it? What do you think?

Watch Your Words – Use Success Language

Many say that they’d like to be their own boss but keeps them for using success language. . Fear has an insidious nature to it. It seeps into everything you think and say, thus making your quest for work life freedom and happiness seem much more difficult than it is.

When fear latches onto the possibility of your dreams, it expands – as one fearful thought after another colors your world darker and darker. These thoughts create an illusion of doubt that is strengthened by your fearful words. What’s the way out?

Watch your language. Is it success language or something less?

Sometimes a tiny adjustment can lead to a huge leap in progress. This is one of those times. If you can simply bump up your awareness on what comes out of your mouth, the fear will dissipate like a morning fog and you’ll be on your way.

Language acts as a bridge between your intentions and your dreams. You can be very clear about what you want and even be very willing to take bold actions. But if your talk doesn’t allow you to see your optimum path – you’ll never walk it. Powerful language not only emboldens your actions, it makes visible options to which you were once blind.

And there’s the rub. Unless a life coach or a really good friend is willing to suggest corrections in your language, you may never know how ineffective it really is. No one can see his or her own blind spots. We simply fall into language patterns over time that do not serve us well. This weaker language repeatedly persuades us that we are capable of far less than we actually are.

In my small business coaching, I work with many clients who have fantastic ideas for a product or for their own small business but they lack a deep belief in themselves. It’s not so much the idea that brings success, but the man or woman behind it. It’s fascinating that these same clients are willing to make bold action agreements to move their ideas forward. Yet they can’t see the silent dream-killer working behind the scenes to trip them up. They can’t see how their own words and thoughts that precede them are making the climb to success so slippery.

If your words don’t line up with your intentions, then you’re working much harder than you need to be. It takes a tremendous amount of energy just to fight the confusion and doubt in your own mind. There is an easier way, and here it is.

Three small language adjustments that will make your dreams come true.

  1. Use Words that evoke Possibility. Some words open us up to seeing more options and some simply close down our receptivity. The simplest shift into possibility language comes from replacing one word with another. Every time you catch yourself saying should change it to could. Should is judgmental and only reinforces an erroneous assessment of your own capability. Using could presents greater options and the life of possibility. Replace should with could in all statements about yourself and addressed to others. When we point the finger of should at another, we are making a feeble attempt to shrug responsibility. Also replace your “I must” and “I ought to” statements with “I can.” Like should, must and ought are also statements that to only serve to make you feel guilty, ineffectual and out of options.
  2. Use Words that place you in the Now. When we speak in the future tense of “I will,” we don’t even believe ourselves. Saying “I will” is almost as weak as saying “I’ll try.” No one believes you when you talk like that, including you. However, there is something boldly empowering about bringing our language right into the present moment, which is the only place from which we can create. Here are the most powerful two words in the English language: I am. Any dream added to these two words instantly energizes and aligns your actions with your intentions. Now I’m going to give you a great gift that I often give my coaching clients the instant they hire me. Use these present moment phrases on the front in of your dream. Instead of saying, “I want to start my own business.” Say… “I’m on the verge of” starting my own business.” Or… “I’m on the brink of” making my dreams come true.” Or my favorite… “I’m in the midst of building my dream life.” The present moment power isn’t in the dream but in those first four empowering words just before you state your objective. Try a few out loud and get ready to blast yourself forward.
  3. Use Words that are Powerfully Positive. Imagine that your life is a ballgame and you are the announcer of that game. If you could carefully listen to yourself call your own game, you’d be amazed at the level of negativity. This is no game; this is your life! If you want your life to more closely follow your intentions, it’s time to begin putting a more positive spin on how you tell your own story. This is often the most difficult of adjustments, because we are unaware of how pitiful we sound. But everyone else can tell almost immediately.

For years I repeatedly talked about my biggest business and life failure. I wrote about it here. It hurt so much that it had become not only my story but also my identity. It colored everything, so that new dreams had a very tough time taking root. Then magically one day I really heard myself – and changed how I called my life’s game.

I want you to know that how you talk about your life could be just as important as the actions you take. In fact, more so – because you probably aren’t taking actions because of the accumulation of your self-talk. Once you realize this and act on that basis, you’ll begin to watch your language about yourself and your dreams. Calling a good game means that you put the most positive spin on how your life is going. Essentially, you look for the bright side and talk about it often.

Here are a few tips on how to put more powerfully positive talk in play.

  • Select an important area of your life where your default talk is generally negative.
  • Write down what you usually say in that area. Now, rewrite your story with a more hopeful, positive spin. Keep rewriting until announcing it lifts you.
  • Commit to announcing your new positive story out loud three times daily. You may have a lot of crappy programming to record over, so stay with it. Have fun with it and call it out like you would a ballgame. Nothing is the end of the world. Your heart still beats regardless of your major wound. It’s time to watch your language and lighten up.
  • Pump up your awareness so you catch yourself when you slip into old powerless positions of blame and negativity. Congratulate yourself for each catch and replace the old with your new, inspiring spin.

A client once asked. “But what do I do when I am so stuck in the negativity that I don’t believe a more positive story about my hopes and dreams?”

When this occurs, we have a deep psychological objection to thinking more positively about ourselves. We need something that will counteract our hidden unwillingness to feel better. Gary Craig developer of Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) designed a powerful ”setup” phrase that works really well.

Here’s the phrase. “Even though I have this ________, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.” Read what John Freedom writes. “This does work – much of the time – but not always. The Setup is intended to be the built-in antidote for psychological reversal (PR). A PR is an objection to healing. It is a form of subtle self-sabotage, and includes any limiting belief or consideration a person is holding, that prevents them from healing and changing now. Often this takes the form of implicit self-hatred.”

Go to the link and read about it for yourself. I really like this setup phrase because of its honesty. I’ve found it to be much more believable than pie-in-the-sky affirmations that are so much beyond what one currently believes.

But by adding the powerful “Even though,” we admit where we are and then can affirm what we want. For example, try combining all of the tips above in one powerful statement. “Even though I’ve struggled, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.” Then…. “Even though I’ve struggled, I’m now in the midst of turning everything around.” When we add the power of tapping (here’s a very good video tutorial on EFT tapping) to this powerful language, amazing breakthroughs are realized.

Watch your language. These three small adjustments can make your dreams come true. Are you willing? Are you ready to make them happen or are you all talk?



Massive Inspired Action – a Recipe for Success

As we seize our work life freedom, it’s often necessary to achieve measurable progress so that our confidence catches up to our intentions. The most effective tool to jump start momentum and insure success is massive inspired action – because it increases the probability of success.

Massive Inspired Action is a process I developed where you engage a variety of fierce and creative actions to increase the probability of reaching an objective. Bull

We make success more likely by increasing the sheer volume and variety of inspired actions over a short period of time. The success comes not necessarily as a direct result of those actions, but more likely as a result of the confidence one emits around the whole campaign. Five years ago, I was sitting in a weekend retreat facilitated by author Egbert Sukop when he said something like, “Results don’t necessarily come directly from the actions we take, but parallel to those actions.” (Image by pbr-angel on Flickr, via Creative Commons license)

He went on to explain this observation. Cause and effect is not a sure thing. Many of our actions produce desired results, but often we can’t foretell which ones will work and which ones will not. Sometimes a method will work four times in a row and then quit working at all.

This got me thinking. Career coaching is a wonderful living laboratory because I get to experiment with so many different clients who hold multiple and varied beliefs on what does and does not work well. Over the years, after working with hundreds of clients, I developed this process to help more clients win the game they want to win.

The process of massive inspired action works so well in a quest for true calling or right livelihood because it counters all the negative energy that cautions us to play it safe and remain miserably where we are. The masses are always going to be against risk. The masses are always going to want you to stay with them so you can wallow together in the prison of employment. Freedom requires bold action; if you’re going to risk it all, why not increase the probability of your success?

Massive inspired action is a fierce excuse eliminator. It’s about the most responsible thing you can do for yourself when you’re ready to make your move. If you are going to seize your freedom, you’ve got to give it your all. It’s imperative that you go beyond what’s required. Just going through the motions and doing the minimum is an employment strategy, not a self-employment one.

You might recall from an earlier post that this is the fourth stage in my Authentic Cycle of Probability. So, first make sure you’ve run your dream or project through the first three stages, discovery, decision and focus. Then you’ll be properly aligned for action.

Why does massive inspired action work so well? Let’s break the recipe down and look at the ingredients.

The benefit of action at first appears obvious. Without it nothing happens. Yet we can’t foretell which actions will produce desired outcomes and which will not. There are too many unseen factors – like subconscious beliefs at play. That’s one reason why it’s more likely that results come alongside actions and not necessarily as a direct result of them.

The benefit of massive is twofold. Massive creates a wave of confident energy, and confidence is a natural attractor. Massive also gives us the space to be creative and to put a variety of methods, approaches and actions in play. Like the prospector who pans for gold, has a sluice running and a mine, by leveraging the sheer number and variety of actions, we increase the probability of striking it rich. Staking multiple claims increases our options when adjustments are needed – and gives us an overall feeling of command.

Inspiration gives an authentic blessing to our massive actions. Inspiration is robust and alive. It provides a level of vigor and courage that’s seldom seen in a lesser campaign. That’s why finding your work life happiness and freedom is such an individual pursuit. Not all things work for all people, and not all methods work all the time. The more genuine your approach, the greater your probability of success. Massive inspired action allows your purest flow of exceptionality to come forth – and that attracts others who want to support your drive for success.

Massive inspired action is not an everyday process. We can only do massive for short periods of time. It’s particularly powerful at the start of a project, when momentum is so critical to success. Save it for the big game that really matters to you. It’s fun to give something all you’ve got. It’s a blast to make your move in a very big way and to follow through all the way to completion.

If you read this blog, chances are you’ve been holding back for some time. Holding back is for wimps. No matter how evolved we are, we all hold back on something. Holding back squashes delight. Are you ready to fly? Might this be your time to give it all you have? Are you ready to step forth and seize your freedom? If you are, then use massive inspired action. It works!

Hard Truths, Whole Truths and Nothing But the Truth? Bull!

What a wonderful adventure self-employment is. I’m laughing at myself today and I want to share that laugh with you. What’s cracking me up? Just that I had a truth to tell, and hemmed and hawed about telling that truth – which is soooo not who I am. Temporarily, I forgot an essential truth of life.

It’s all bull. We make it all up. (Image by mrchriscornwell on Flickr, via Creative Commons license) Bull

In personal matters, everything we perceive as truth is really a fabrication that we put together to explain our actions and decisions. Through the lenses of our own perception, every story that we tell ourselves about ourselves, if limiting in any way, is pure bull. Our stories are full of reasons, justifications, excuses and lies that we create so that we don’t have to be as authentically daring as we really know we ought to be.

“There are no whole truths: all truths are half-truths. It is trying to treat them as whole truths that plays the devil.” – Alfred North Whitehead

Here’s what’s so funny. Like most folks, I don’t really enjoy confrontation. But like most coaches, I rigorously self-examine. So when I know something’s not kosher, I really can’t remain silent.

I suspect that my darker side may even bring things to a boil so that bold action is necessary. For a long time, I was one of those guys who avoided conflict and procrastinated until I forced my own hand. Then I buckled down and pulled things out at the last minute. I repeated that pattern until it didn’t work for me in one colossal failure. But something within me still craves the remnants of last minute heroics, because I continue to create situations that require it.

For example, I’d rather be brutally honest, even at the risk of rubbing someone the wrong way, than remain silent and tolerant. Isn’t that what we mean when we say we are done suffering fools? But who’s really the fool? Who created the situation in the first place?

The reason I’m laughing so hard at myself is that I’ve realized that I continue to create the very tyranny that I do battle with. It’s no wonder that Braveheart is my favorite movie.

For me, the greatest benefit of self-employment is the freedom of self-determination. But this freedom to call one’s own shots comes with the responsibility of exercising our independence in the face of the pressure to conform. We can’t truly live our freedom without reclaiming it on a regular basis, even if that reclamation is accomplished by smashing the boundaries of our own fabrications.

Sometimes the only thing holding me back is a limiting belief about myself. I suspect if you look within you’ll find the same thing to be true for you.

I am powerless is the lie beneath all other lies.   Steve Chandler

Want to try a powerful, yet very quick and easy exercise? Write down something you say you really want at the top of a pad of paper. Since you don’t already have it, you must have some beliefs that support you not having it. Right? Go ahead and write them all down. Just really make the case for why you can’t have what you want. No go back over your list and see if you really are powerless to make your move. Or is it just a story you’ve been telling yourself?