24 November 2011
LIFE SUCCESS 101: KEY LEARNINGS FROM MY JOURNEY AS A LIFE COACH
For those of you who follow a life of perfect days on Facebook, you may have heard me talk about some training I have been doing over the weekend just passed.
I am currently training to become a Life Coach, and I just spent 3 days in my first of many face to face training sessions. In case you're wondering what it is that I have been harping on about in all of my Facebook status updates, I want to share with you in this post, more about my journey and my learnings so far.
The decision to embark on this journey did not come lightly for me. I eluded to the process I went through to make this big decision in a previous post titled Daring Moments, where I had to find the courage to overcome many of the fears that had previously stopped me making this commitment. I never once doubted how much I wanted this, however I still spent many years doubting my ability to do it.
As a reader of this blog, I am sure that you can clearly see how passionate I am about principles of creating a happy and fulfilling life. I love nothing more than sharing inspiring information with others that assists them to learn and grow in themselves. Becoming a Life Coach, seems like the obvious career choice for me, as it means I can turn my hobby in to a career, and spend every day of my life teaching and sharing the very thing I write about on this blog.
But isn't it funny how even though I knew so clearly that this was what I wanted, that I still procrastinated on it? Why is it that when I knew deep inside me that this is what I was meant to be doing, that I spent so many years telling myself that I couldn't do it? It is amazing how often we block ourselves from doing or experiencing the very thing that will make us the happiest!
I have a strong belief that everything unfolds in our lives exactly as it is supposed to, and in every moment where are exactly where we need to be. I believe that the path I have had to take to overcome my own fears and limitations in order to follow my heart's desire, has actually served as a huge blessing in my life. Without the need to overcome some of my challenges, I would not have developed such a passionate interest in the field of personal development and human behaviour. Without this journey, I would not have developed such a strong desire to assist others to overcome their limitations and find what they really want in life, just like I have.
As I continue on my journey to complete my training, I cannot even begin to imagine what amazing and enlightening information I will come across. I cannot wait to share my experiences and learnings with you here. Over the coming months, there will also be many changes unfolding in this blog, in my self and in the information and services I offer you. So watch this space in 2012 as many of my exciting ideas will begin to become realities.
In the meantime, I want to share a few key learnings that I got from the training I just completed. There was definitely a lot more than this that I got out of the weekend just passed. But I wanted to pick out these key principles to share with you, in the hope that they may open your mind and shift your perceptions just in the way they have for me.
LIFE SUCCESS 101: THE KEY PRINCIPLES
Live From Your Heart Space
Do you know the difference between living from your head and living from your heart? Do you know how it feels to be connected with your heart energy and see the world through that view?
One of the first lessons I learnt over the weekend was that you cannot be a great life coach if you are stuck in your head. I would even generalise that to say, you can not live a great life if you are stuck in your head. When you are in your head, you are often thinking about yourself. Your thoughts are self-absorbed, self-conscious and analytical and it is impossible to be truly present in this moment.
It is when you are in your heart space, that you can truly be there for another person. You are connected to your truth, and to the thoughts and feelings that serve yourself and others. This is the place where your deepest dreams and desires lay. It is where your positive, empowering and supportive thoughts come from. When you communicate from the heart, your intention is always pure. When you are present in your heart space, with another person, you are 100% there for them. All your attention is on them. You are listening to them, you are focusing on them, and you this is where you can deeply connect with them.
So how do we do this? We get over ourselves. The heart energy is about giving and loving. It is about service. Being of service to others is the greatest gift we can give. It is about being present and giving 100% of attention to where we are, here and now. You can tap in to this energy by putting your focus entirely on another person, and completely detaching from thoughts about yourself. I also use meditation to connect with my heart space. Through the act of slowing down my thoughts and directing my attention to my body and my breathing, I naturally drop in to that soft space in my heart. Other people connect with this energy through being in nature, being creative, appreciating and being grateful, or immersing themselves in something they love to do.
Many of us are afraid of what is uncertain. It is unknown, unfamiliar and uncharted territory. In this space, we have no references to draw on to assist us in predicting what will happen. As a result, we often avoid that which is new and unfamiliar. Or, we approach it with trepidation. For people like me, who often encounter control freak issues, this can be a challenging concept to embrace!
What I learnt over the weekend, is that it is in the realm of uncertainty that all magic happens. There is a saying that says - if you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always got. If you want to create change in your life, you are going to have to do things differently, right? It is not until we step in to the unfamiliar that we can discover our true potential.
Living in uncertainty also causes you to become grounded in the present moment. You are forced to take life one day at a time as you have no idea what is around the corner. You must approach every task one step at a time, as you do not know how the journey will unfold. It is an absolutely magical space to live from and it is a principle that must be embraced if you want to move beyond the boundaries of your comfort zone.
Say Yes, Then Work Out How
This principle has the potential to take your life from blah to wow. Seriously. This is also one of the principles that I am most committed to embracing.
Saying yes and then working out how, means committing to an outcome even if you have absolutely no idea how it is going to happen or how you are going to be able to do it. The amazing thing about this principle is that as soon as you say yes, the universe begins to conspire to figure out the how. The energy and intention you set forward when you commit to an outcome, literally causes the world to rearrange itself to make sure it happens.
The reason this principle is so powerful is because most people are living their lives in the completely opposite way. How often have you said no to something because you didn't know if you could do it? How often do you put off making a decision, until you can see how it is going to happen? We often sit around waiting for everything to be perfect before we act. We need 'all the ducks to line up' before we are willing to act.
Living with this principle requires courage, faith and a willingness to not know. Sure, it requires you to take a risk and live in the unknown, but the rewards you will experience from stepping out and embracing uncertainty will be well worth it.
Make Decisions Based On Your Desired Outcome
Here is another gem. I want you to ask yourself, how you make decisions. What does the process normally involve? I would say 99% of people make decisions based on how they feel. Eg: what they feel like eating, what they feel like doing, who they feel like seeing. The problem with this, is that making decisions this way does not always take you where you want to go, and in fact may actually take you in the complete opposite direction.
Say you are wanting to get healthier and lose weight, and you are in the process of making a decision of what to eat for lunch. You may feel like eating something deep fried, high in fat or filled with sugar because it tastes nice and will make you feel good. But, making this decision will actually take you in the complete opposite direction to your goal. So, how do you decide what to eat then? You decide based on the outcome you want to achieve. So, if the outcome you want is to lose 5kg and look healthier, then you would obviously choose something such as a nutritious salad to eat, as that would take you closer to your goal. Right?
The tough part of this principle, is that in order to make decisions based on your outcome, it means you are going to sometimes have to do things you do not feel like doing. You may not feel like eating that salad, you may not feel like going on that date, or you may not feel like calling up that company and asking for a job. But, if these steps are going to take to closer to your desired outcome, then it is imperative that you take them.
Sometimes you have to ignore that uncomfortable feeling and refocus your attention on why you are doing something. Once you have a powerful and compelling reason why you are doing it, you will be motivated to step beyond your feelings and do what it takes to achieve it.
Live At Cause
This principle is about living life at cause rather than at effect. When you live at cause you live as a creator. It is not about being in control of outside circumstances. But it is about controlling your internal response to those outside circumstances. You can choose how you think and feel and you can choose how you respond. You can choose how you will act, what you will say and what you will believe. Living at cause is believing in your power to create change in your life and alter your experience and perceptions of the world.
The trick is, that while you may be living 90% of your life at cause, it does not mean that there are not some areas where you are not stepping up and taking responsibility. Are there any areas of your life where you blame other people or other circumstances outside of you? Are there areas where you feel out of control and powerless to make a change? Are there any areas where you feel like things just happen to you or people just do things to you? Well, this is a sure sign you're living at effect.
If you can see that there are areas where you are living at effect, it is time to take your power back. Remind yourself that you have the ability to change it or create something different. You also have the ability to see it in a new light or think about it in a different way. This is all it takes to move to living at cause, and doing this will enable you to start making progress in areas where you previously felt stuck.
Be Playful And Curious
Do not take your self too seriously! Do not take life so seriously. This is a huge learning for me. There are times in my life, where I take all the fun out of an experience because I am putting so much pressure on it, or on myself. Be light and playful with all your experiences. Do things because you enjoy them. Remain present and grounded in the experience without getting stuck in your head and making it mean something more serious than it is. Life is to be sampled, experienced and enjoyed.
The other beautiful quality to cultivate is curiosity. Have a childlike curiosity about life. Become fascinated with yourself, your world and why things happen the way they do. Doing this helps you create an open and flexible mind that is not locked in to one rigid way of seeing the world. When things happen that you don't understand, ask questions and approach them with a light hearted fascination. Be willing to see things from a new perspective and allow yourself to explore options and opportunities as they arise with a curious and creative mind.