Redefine Success

Date posted: September 13, 2013

I don’t know about you, but I get bored pretty easily. I have a lot of different interests, and keeping things fresh makes Kerri a happy girl.

That freshness can be particularly important when it comes to work. I’m sure you’ve heard and read a lot about “finding your passion” — that one thing that you were supposedly put on this earth to do. That can feel like a whole lot of pressure, and it’s easy to feel lost, hopeless, or less-than if you’re floundering around, unsure of what your passion is.

success A lot of clients come to me seeking help in finding their direction, and sure, many want to hone in and focus on a particular area, field, or profession. Then there are those, like me, who enjoy lots of different projects, and they’re frustrated because they don’t know which one to pick.

So I say, don’t pick. Maybe variety is your passion, and yes, it can be. It’s time to break free of old thinking and outdated societal expectations and do you.

In some recent sessions with a client, we identified that her passion is, in fact, variety, so it’s no wonder she’s been struggling to find her “thing”. Her conditioning tells her that having varied interests, particularly professionally, means she’s flighty or unfocused or not driven. Is that the phone ringing? Because I call bullshit.

Since beginning to embrace her new truth, Beth (not her real name) feels freer, more excited, open to possibilities, while still a bit tentative because it all feels too good to be true.

Our world has changed dramatically. It’s entirely possible to have what is referred to as a “portfolio career” or as my client calls it a “buffet lifestyle”, meaning you do lots of different things as your profession, and consequently, bring variety to all aspects of your life. And guess what? These things don’t even have to be related! I know, isn’t that cray cray?

Long gone are the days of landing an office job, dressing up in a business suit, packing your briefcase and heading off on your commute to your 12-hour day. Sure, to some, that still works for them, and that’s great. We need all kinds. But if you’re anything like me, that sounds like torture.

It can be challenging to be the one to break the mold, and often tempting to just tow the line to not rock the boat. But are you really living out loud by towing the line? No, you’re stifling a part of you who is screaming to get out, and she’ll stew in resentment causing you an under-the-surface rumbling of misery (and sometimes she blows and that misery comes pouring out into your relationships, health, and peace of mind).

What would it feel like to give yourself permission to break the mold? To go after that lifestyle that feels “wrong”? Even just considering it is a powerful act. If you’re feeling brave, give this a go:

At the top of a page, write, “If I had no fears or limitations, I would ______________” and get to writing. Scribble down thoughts, phrases, full-on stories. No filter, just go nuts. Let that part of you express herself. You might be surprised by what she has to say. She could give you some real insight that you’ve been craving.

Remember, letting her share is not committing to doing anything, so don’t let fear stop you. Create that safe space for her to say whatever she wants, with no judgment or limits from you.

If you’re feeling really courageous and ready to voice your dreams, I invite you to share what you wrote in the comments section below. It’s powerful to think it; more powerful to write it; even more powerful to share it.

Which societal expectations are you fed up with? What lines are you tired of towing? How would you like to let your freak flag fly? Me? I’m rethinking my definition of the “American Dream”. My adventurous spirit doesn’t fit the white, picket fence mold, and I’m learning to be ok with that.

Let’s keep talking below!

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