Tweak

Who has ever felt stuck? All of us. And when we feel that way, it is so easy to fall prey to our culture’s go-big-or-go-home attitude toward improving your life. The messages coming at us encourage huge leaps in the pursuit of a better, happier, more fulfilled life. “Quit your job! Leave your unsatisfying relationship! Move off the grid to a tiny home and eat insects!”

These might be advisable solutions for some of us (where we’ve done the work to understand our situation, analyzed all the best available options for improving our lives, and are making educated choices).

For many of us, the risk of these alluring wholesale Life Changes is significant.

We underestimate the power of much smaller changes to radically improve our sense of happiness, purpose and wellbeing on a daily basis. These require a fraction of the energy, resources and risk associated with bigger changes. Here are five ideas for small tweaks with a big return on investment:

1. Do not leave your town or even your home, if you don’t want to. Just change what you’re doing in it. Watch a different show, read a different book, go to a different restsurant. Repeat regularly to continuously shift your perspective.

2. Think of three people in your circle that you admire and plan to spend more time with them. We know the people we surround ourselves with have a major impact on how we develop as people and how we feel. Choose wisely.

3. Skip the degree or expensive certification unless you are really sure you will love the experience. There are no guarantees with formal education anymore. Instead take a course in your community or online for free. Learning about something that interests you is extremely rewarding plus you’ll connect with a tribe of like-minded folks along the way. And you can still put it on your resume.

4. Update your rituals. Take a moment to consider where stress lies in your day. Is small talk in the elevator with your boss every morning driving you to consider quitting your job? Arrive 5 minutes earlier. Is packing your kid’s lunch the worst part of your morning? Supervise him doing it the night before. Do you wake up feeling tried everyday? This one’s easy: go to sleep 15 minutes earlier, moving bedtime up until you start to feel refreshed.

5. Get meaning. A really common complaint as we grow in our careers – especially for women – is a feeling that it lacks meaning. Here’s how to get some: lead a philanthropic project in your company. Socially minded business is in vogue – even unexpected companies will get onboard. Or, volunteer through or outside of work, even once a month or year. Or, do a race for charity. Or, if you have no time for any of that, but you have some money set aside, make a donation. Find something you really believe in and choose to invest in meaning with the money you earn at your less-than-meaningful job.

Small changes, big impact. What will you do?

Get your blossom on

Ya, I know it’s fall not spring. You know something I’ve learned since writing this blog? That season names are not capitalized. I guess I talk about seasons a lot, which is appropriate seeing as we’re discussing radical evolution here…aka change. And seasons are the ultimate symbol of change.

It’s fall and everything is dying ( I exaggerate – many things are  just going dormant for a few months). But today’s message is to get blooming, because, well, we live  in a globalized world and you can procure flowers any time.

That, and I’ve started an exciting journey. Reading You are a Badass by Jen Sincero.

And the day came when the risk to remain  tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. 

That’s a quote from the poet Anais Nin that JS shares in the introduction of her book.

And I think I’m epiphanizing here. A very obvious truth, but one I maybe haven’t seen until now because I’m just too close to it.

I’ve been seeking most of my adult life. I’ve been reading and meditating and seeing therapists and looking for ways to blow up and radically evolve my life for so long. And I recently looked at a friend of mine who’s been with me for a lot of it. And I thought: how come my friend isn’t on this journey too? This friend doesn’t want to read You are a Badass with me. Not interested.

Now,  truth be told I’m a personal development enthusiast. ENFJ that I am, no surprise there  (just ask the one and only Ops Win).

But there’s something else. I need more. I want more. Whatever it is that I’m doing, this is not it for me. Because if it was, well, I wouldn’t still be looking to change it.

I would be like my friend. I would do other  stuff, read other books.

SO simple,  right?

Well, admitting that is huge. It means that if I don’t get things in motion to really create and live the life that I know I’m meant to live,  then I’m knowingly holding myself back.

Like an enormous non badass. Like a scared, tame-ass, withering, weak little puddle.

Versus a bold, badass, thriving, big strong  tower.

Signing off now to go and, you know, get started with that.

As for you, thank you for reading this.  And get your blossom on,  too!