To me, its not even a choice or debate whether you have time to start exploring who you are, what you enjoy doing, what brings you happiness, what is important to you…
Some people may call this “selfish.” But in my humble opinion, you gotta do it. You have to find time to go on an adventure of finding yourself. And I do believe there are ways to find time and financial resources for it no matter what your situation may be (more on this in future lifestyle/entrepreneurship blog posts.)
Heres why I think its a total non-negotiable to take the time and space to figure out who you truly are:
When we are completely detached from what makes us happy, who we really are, what we really want to do with our time on earth…what brings us joy, what makes us laugh so fucking hard our abs hurt (ps. I believe most of society is detached in this way)
We are just a shell of ourselves. And a shell of a person cant start being a part of the momentum and change that is needed in our world right now.
If you feel called to be a leader in any way, it is imperative to start to uncover what your purpose on this planet really is, and part of that is figuring out who you truly are…not what your upbringing, or your job, your society has molded you to be.
And let me define a leader as someone who is making positive change, so this could be in your home, at your job, in your community. This could be becoming the best mom you can be, the best wife, the best coworker, the best friend (dont think this means you have to run for president or speak on a stage with an audience of 10,000…leadership starts with small steps, and we need it more than ever right now.)
Past the fact that getting more connected to yourself is important to grow as a leader and to have the impact you are meant to have on the world, getting connected to yourself is important for…you.
Yes, lets just get straight selfish here.
If you dont know what you really enjoy doing, if you arent sure what success really means to you personally, if you are basing your decisions and your goals on what you are seeing others do–you will never feel fulfilled. You will feel restless, stuck, hopeless, defeated, exhausted.
I know because Ive been there. This complete disconnection from what brought me joy is exactly what lead to sell all of my stuff and live on the road full-time for over a year. I was making rash decisions and hoping it would lead me to the ultimate “destination.” I had NO CLUE what I wanted my life to be, but I knew what I DIDNT want it to be, and so I let fear run the show. If you havent read that post, you can check it out here.
But anyhoo– Im going to share a few tips that I started implementing in my life to make space and find time to explore who I really am and what I want to create in and for my life.
PS. This sense of self didnt happen overnight, and I still havent arrived just fyi…thats not how that works. But I will tell you I feel 150% happier, less anxious, more trusting, more optimistic than I was about 3 years ago.
Remember, this is a journey to yourself…and yes, Ill use that cheesy quote, Its the journey, not the destination…lol. But its true!
Ok, Ill get into it finally
3 ways that I started my journey of self-discovery and what I really want for my life:
#1 Just effing do something…different.
About 3 years ago, a friend of mine asked me to go to hot yoga. I hated being hot, and I hated yoga, so this sounded like HELL. But, that little part of me knew I needed to shake it up, I needed to do something different…so shit, I went to hot yoga.
When I got there, I was an anxious mess, like I always was in those days. Like ridiculous anxious mess, asking the instructor Ummmmmm, I just drank coffee like 2 hours ago…will I die?!?! Am I dehydrated?!?! Is this safe!?!?!?! He basically told me, Youre fine, get in the room, and that is what I did!
I had not a clue what I was doing, I do think I almost died like 10 ten times, I couldnt breathe, I had to take a break every other pose, I was DRENCHED in sweat by the time it was over…but you know what? It kinda felt good. Something about that dark room, loud music, just being away from everything…plus having to focus HARD on the instructor because I had no clue what I was doing…was meditative (ps. I didnt meditate back then either, but my mind shut off a little bit for that hour and I realized I got relief.)
So I didnt love the class. But I liked it. We left, inhaled Thai food, and then I took a three hour nap. My body wasnt used to movement at that time lol.
But…I went back again. And again, and again. Then I got a ten-class pass, then a 20…then I was a monthly member.
Yoga became my outlet. It became my church, my sanctuary. Where I went when I was grieving and in pain so much and I didnt know what to do. I went there. It didnt necessarily always give me answers, but it gave me time to connect back to myself. To get quiet and reflect. I wasnt used to this, and I didnt realize how much I needed it. You know how people say “give it up to God?” This is when I started “giving it up to yoga.” Truly, I don’t care who you give it up to…but I’ll just tell you that this world is too heavy to carry on your own, and I encourage you to find an outlet.
So slowly but surely, this hot and yoga-hating girl became a hot yoga addict.
And thats how you figure out who you TRULY are…you do something fucking different! Because, again, another cheesy quote for you…no change=no change! What will you go try this week?
#2 Make time to explore
Maybe this should have been #1, because in order to execute what Im talking about…you have to make time for it! But hey, Ill keep it at #2.
In order to start designing the life you truly want, you MUST start getting intentional with your time. I am going to be posting a ton more on this, and will even be creating a course on the system I use because it has totally changed my life…but for now, Ill give you the cliff notes version.
I learned quite a few years back that the reason why so many people seem to NEVER get to all those things they want to get to, like eating healthier, working out, reading that book, doing that house project, starting that blog (a-hem,) is simply because they are taking every day by the seat of their pants, reacting to what comes up, instead of planning how they want their week to look.
This is how I operated my first direct sales business for about 3-years until I had the wake up call that a) I hated how scattered I felt b) I wasnt getting anything done that I need to c) I wasnt working out and I was eating like shit and again, I hated how I felt.
I knew I had to do something different, and so that I did.
I created a system for my time…and again, Im going to be giving you a ton more around that system soon
But what I can tell you now is that the biggest game changer for me is sitting down the day before the beginning of the week (so for me, I think of Monday as a new fresh week, so I sit down and do this on Sunday EVERY WEEK no matter what!) and I review what I have coming up, and PLAN how I will spend every day of that week.
As far as making sure that I am making space to try the new things I want to try, or move forward on project, or make sure I am working out/eating healthy, I know the priorities I have for that week and then I strategically place them on the calendar, making sure that I wont have too much that could make me late or make me have to cancel whatever I want to do. I problem solve before the week starts, instead of in the middle of the day when I realize I might not have time to get to that new yoga class (see the difference?)
Its all about taking some time to problem solve and plan.
Remember, you have to make time for you or else youre feeling like an exhausted shell. I urge you to sit down this week and take a look ahead before you move forward with your week.
#3 Stay curious. Stay open. Stay a student
Ill keep this last one short and sweet.
Ive had a lot of healing to do. A lot of shit to work out.
I walked into that first hot yoga class I mentioned above feeling completely hopeless and broken.
I was so sad about so many things and none of it I could fix. I had to learn to surrender and I had no choice (well, at least if I wanted to be happy again,) to keep trying to figure out how to turn my emotional well-being around.
And so, the past few years…I have just been open as fuck.
That yoga class has lead to learning how to meditate, learning breathwork, going to yoag retreats, experiencing reiki, experiencing thai yoga massage, experiencing working with an energy worker, going to therapy, acupuncture, going to the chiropractor, learning about essential oils, reading new books I would never normally read.
You have to be determined to commit to uncovering who you truly are.
You are so worthy of happiness, love, acceptance, joy, abundance…all of it.
I feel like a completely different person as we settle down here in Portland, ME.
Ive worked hard to get here and to feel in such a better place. So I cant even name or pinpoint what you might be feeling, but if you are feeling less than whole, sad, empty, lost, uninspired, hurt, angry…please know that there is so much out there to support you, but you MUST go seek it out.
Id love to give you ideas…well shit. Here, Ill just list some below:
- Go to any yoga class
- Go to a restorative yoga class
- Go to meetup.com and find a get together that interests you
- Book a massage
- Ask you fb community what book you should read, and go buy or borrow the one that speaks to you
- Take an art class (painting, pottery, jewelry, drawing, knitting)
- Watch a documentary about a topic you know nothing about and something that is out of your comfort zone
- Treat yo’self. Go do something you normally never spend the money on…a manicure, pedicure, nice cut and color, fancy dinner out…by yourself 😉
- Wear a color you don’t normally wear
- Meet up with a new friend for coffee
- Meet up with an old friend for coffee
- Paint a room in your house
- Buy a house plant if that’s not typically your thing
- Go hiking
- Take a solo trip…even a day trip
- Buy yourself flowers
- Take a bath
- Try meditating
- Start that passion project…finally
I’d love to see what you are going to try!!! Comment below and let me know!