How to get what you want (minus the two year old tantrum)
Ever wondered what it takes to go from wanting something real bad, dreaming about it on and on and on to actually doing everything you can to bring it into your life and smell it?
Why are there some things you can make happen (like haul yourself out of the house and get that painful wax, eyebrow feathering, piercings, hovering over at ticket master for hours waiting for the moment Beyonce tickets get released), and other things you procrastinate over or put off for years? And what is it that makes all the difference?
For years I never really gave it any thought. Never stopped to think "What was that special somethin' somethin' I had in me that made the 'impossibles', possible?". Truth is, there were heaps of times where I would've said to myself "That'll never happen" or "I could never do that".. But somehow, I'd go on and make it happen. And I bet you've been there too. Ohh you want an example don't you?
I thought you might. Okay so.. when I was about to graduate, everyone had a list like two pages long of employers they were gonna reach out to for a grad position. I think I had six on my list. Barely took up any space on the page. And I only bothered to reach out to three or four of them. Hey, I was busy. So I ended up focusing on the ones that actually sounded cool to work for. I think I heard back from two places. One rejected me (thank god). So I was down to one employer and it was actually the only one I was happy to work for (at the time. We know how that turned out). A woman from the company also taught a tute I was in and I thought she was so bad-ass. I had to be part of that and be bad ass too. It was all two eyeballs on this employer- I went for it. Oh the emails, the phone calls the "Yep, I adapt real well to anything (p.s have you seen my awesome grades and p.p.s have you seen the cool stuff I've been up to)". I was persistently annoying but I was dead set serious I was gonna get a job there. And turns out I got it.
Isn't it interesting how easily we forget about our "I'm not taking no for an answer" sass, our resilience our resourcefulness?
Instead, we limit ourselves by focusing on what we're afraid of and why something is too hard. We've learned to hold ourselves back and complicate things in our minds. We've then become comfortable with telling ourselves that dreams are just that- dreams. And it's not for us. Game of Thrones anyone?
We do this because, if we can talk ourselves out of something early enough, we just might be able to save ourselves from the fear of the unknown, of rejection, of failure.. We're trying to save ourselves before we know for certain that something 'bad' will happen. Seriously, how many things have blown up in your face but you're still standing to tell the story? We get through things.
And we've been making things happen all our lives! Think about the times you've had to bare the grunt of being uncomfortable to get something done- and you did it (right now childbirth comes to mind). The key is to remember how you did it in the past, and do it again (my reference to childbirth might not be appropriate here).
Well before I became a coach, I buried myself into all sorts of info about personal growth & development looking for ssuccessss.. alas, with no luck. I knew how to get things done, but I couldn't figure out what it took to be 'successful'. There's a difference. Now that I'm a coach, I finally get it (more about that in a moment).
I've figured out the pattern I'd go through to get what I want. And thanks to Tony Robbins, I've got a concise way of explaining this process which I can vouch for. Its simplicity seems so obvious but it's incredible how much it's overlooked. By the way, simple is always better than complex so you're gonna be able to digest this one.
F + A = Success
When it comes to progress and success, it boils down to two key skills: achievement and fulfilment.
Achievement is about having the drive and hunger to keep in constant action. It's doing the shizz that needs to be done to achieve what you set out to do.
And when it comes to fulfilment, well, if you're out there putting all your time, effort, blood, sweat and tears into something that isn't actually what YOU want (or if it's for all the wrong reasons), you can absolutely achieve (and brag. hey many people do it), but if you're not fulfilled, if it doesn't have meaning to you, if the end doesn't justify the means.. then that's not success my friend, you might be given an F. Be selective of how and why you spend your time and effort.
Achievement with purpose and fulfilment is the winning combo.
I'll give you another example. Yes, its previous career related, I don't care. So if you read my first post I talk about the detour I took before I became a coach, I talk about how I spent yeeaaarrsss of my life committed to engineering. Now, there's nothing wrong with engineering, it's a pretty cool career if that's what you enjoy. It's just that it wasn't for me. I thought engineering was the bees knees of being able to prove to the world that I was intelligent enough, hard working enough, successful enough. That if I did this, I'd be a somebody. Huge *face palm*. That was me trying to do the right thing for acceptance- just done in a misguided way.
But nevertheless I did it. I worked hard, I took action, I graduated with honours, I got a pretty cool role and worked on some pretty exciting shit. But it wasn't in the slightest what I should have been doing. I didn't love it, it was interesting, but I wasn't passionate about it. So much so it put me into a huge rut because I couldn't figure out why I was miserable with everything I had achieved.
So, to have an amazing quality of life, you need to find fulfilment in what you set out to achieve!
Now, say you're crystal clear on what you want and why you want it. Your heart and mind are in the right place. What does it take then, to achieve it?
In my own experience (and as Robbins describes it), achievement is a three part process.
How to Achieve
Step one - Are you hungry yet?
The first step, once you know what you want, is to become utterly obsessed with it. If it truly is what you want- if it's something that you know is going to improve the quality of your life then you need to be hella hungry for it. It needs to become something you can't let go of, it's on your mind all the time and it makes you antsy. Like my kids bopping up and down nearly knocking me over, waiting for me to open the damn chocolate chip cookies they shouldn't be having.
When I decided to become a coach, I knew it was what I was meant to be doing. I knew I had to do it. And I believed in my bones that supporting others in living super-dooper lives and reducing what made them want to throw in the towel, was what I was put on this earth to do. (Yes. I am a caring person deep down). I got passionate (and it's only getting worse).
At the time as I was working as an engineer and I found myself shit scared of leaving my career because it was something I dedicated so much time and effort to. It sounded crazy to throw it away and say "Adios amigos". But my obsession for coaching outweighed all the fears of leaving something I worked so hard for. The thought of not pursuing it was far more painful in the end. This level of obsession is what's responsible for all the action I took.
I started learning everything I could about coaching (and still do). What it was about, how it helps people, the amazing ways it changes lives.. and I knew I had to tap into it one way or another. I looked up courses that I could do. I reached out to people to ask my endless questions. I read books, watched videos, read about other people's experiences. I took inspiration from the amazing people out there in the world who were doing the exact thing I wanted to do. I had never been so hungry for anything, the way I was for this. There was that much action that I enrolled into a course and became a coach. I was, and still am, obsessed.
Step two - Taking massive action. I said massive. Not the puny kind
The second part of achievement is having enough drive to take massive action. When it comes to taking action, we often stop ourselves in our tracks. We get caught up in not knowing where to start, we feel overwhelmed, we run all sorts of stories in our heads of why we can't do things. And why is that? It's because we're scared about taking the wrong first step and failing. Or we try to prepare ourselves for the worst. It's then easier not to do anything about it than having to face the fear of unknown certainty. (Little do we realise that that fear, is a strong sign that we're about to face something, overcome it and grow!)
But it's taking action- any kind of action, that is the single most important thing you can do. You don't have to have it all figured out or know what you're doing, but you've gotta start somewhere. Anywhere. You might miss the mark to begin with, you might try something that doesn't work, but the more you keep changing your approach it'll give you momentum to keep going until something sticks. And eventually, you'll hit the bull's eye. That's one great skill that studying engineering has taught me. It's how to keep trying until you get the answer.
And if you're obsessed with what you're going for, it won't matter how many times you need to keep trying, you'll keep at it because the desire for what you want is far higher than the fear of not getting it right at the start. So taking consistent and bold action is key.
Step three - Give me an amen
The third part of the process is to have that sense of faith. Acknowledging that in this life there is something out there that's far greater than ourselves but also lies within each and everyone of us, helps us stick to what we believe in. It's what helps us to believe in ourselves.
I don't believe the events that brought me here to the point where I'm writing about this stuff was an accident. I certainly followed the first two steps wholeheartedly, but I believed there's something else that I can't account for that's guiding me to being exactly where I want to be. And if you have the belief that life is working for your and not against you, you'll leave the door open for opportunities that you could never have imagined.
So, what do you think? Have you experienced this winning combo that made the impossible, possible?
What's one action you can do to bring you one step closer to your ideal life? I'd love to hear from you in the comments section!