Early on in my life I was a planner. I planned everything. And I worried. And I procrastinated. And I rarely stepped outside my comfort zone. And so accomplishments were limited by my own fears. Fears of failure. Fears of embarrassment. Fears of not being good enough.
So I’d start down the road on an idea. But I wouldn’t implement. I wouldn’t get an idea out into the real world. I wouldn’t test these ideas. They would only exist in my own world of my mind.
As I’ve grown older and hopefully wiser, I’ve found that life is too short not to let your ideas see the light of day.
So starting my career and small business consulting business and blog has been a true test of faith and risk. Not huge financial risk. But risk of self. Putting myself and my ideas to the test. Willing to let them fly or fall flat.
But what has made this possible is a change in thinking that has evolved.
Joy is in the process.
No longer am I destination focused. For me now the joy comes in the process. Living in the moment.
As I reflect back I now realize how the future planning in my head had created such huge levels of stress. And how living for the future blinded me to the beauty of the moment.
Now I can’t say I don’t plan for the future. I still do. And people still tell me I often miss what is going on around me because of the conversations constantly playing out in my head.
But as I said, life is a process. It won’t all change overnight.
So like the evolution of my guitar playing in “Part 2”, my business growth has been a non-linear process as well.
I look at goals I set at the start of the year and the progress I’ve made. And it is funny. A lot of the goals I set at the start of the year really sucked as I look back on them now. Some of that is I was blind to what I really needed to accomplish. And the other part is the growth I’ve had during that time has opened my eyes to new doors that needed to be opened.
When you don’t get too hung up on the path you’ve laid out for yourself, but stick with a vague direction to head in, you find that the process becomes easier. And you enjoy it so much more. And opportunities present themselves to you when you are ready to accept them.
And the really cool thing is when you look back over time, you realize how far you’ve traveled and how much you’ve grown and how much of an impact on others you’ve made. And that makes doing it so worthwhile.
Life is a process, not a destination
Think about that a little. And reflect.
Like a star you can look towards but disappears when you look directly at it, so it is with your goals and dreams. Accomplishing them by a direct route often results in frustration and failure.
But take the circuitous route. Yes, the classic road less traveled. And you’ll uncover truths and create relationships that will serve you for a lifetime.
When I was a kid I loved to read. I could immerse myself in books for hours on end. Escaping to strange new worlds or going on exciting adventures. The cares and expectations of the real world drifted away into the recesses of my mind. And I was in the moment. Part of a world without the limitations of being the little kid in a big kid’s world. Without having to grow up too fast and face young adult responsibilities.
And now I find as I reach into my later years a peace knowing that I won’t be here forever. And that the time is now to do, and learn and share. And then repeat it again. That life is about living. And living is about accepting each moment as a gift. And this gift is from God. And must be shared to fully blossom.
So what am I saying to you?
Imagine right now you are in a place of peace. A place where nothing bad can get through. Where you have all the power. Where you can create without fear or failure. Where you are able to create something, whether in your mind or in the real world. Then you find you are outside yourself. You don’t have feelings. You just have complete clarity. You watch your body doing. And you marvel at it and just absorb it in wonder.
That is what living in the process is like. It is what happens when an artist is in the flow. Painting or writing. Or the surfer feeling the perfect wave. Or the inventor creating. Or the athlete achieving greatness where it seemed as if it was effortless. As close to seeing God on this earth as you can get. It is what you find when you’re out in nature. Without all the electronics. Just feeling the ground beneath your feet. The brisk winter air against your face. The fragrance of the flowers and trees.
So when you find yourself caught up in the rat race. Feeling like you must produce or your job is at risk. Or you must make that next product launch a success or your business will cave in. Or your relationships are frayed and you’re afraid what might be next.
This is when living in the moment. Accepting the process. And letting the destination sort itself out on its own. That is when you are truly free.
So my challenge to you today is to cast aside the shackles of your expectations for yourself. Step into the void. Unafraid or afraid. But step nonetheless.
And if you need someone to be by your side as you take this journey, come find me. I’d love to help you move forward into your new world of discovery.