What's Up Buttercup?
What's Up Buttercup?
Motivation is a Myth 😳
The belief that we have to feel inspired or motivated in order to do something is complete bullshit!
For the past couple of weeks, no matter whether the weather is “good” or “bad” I take my morning walk.
Now, I know you are smart and paying attention and you noticed those quotation marks around those two annoying words.
See the weather isn’t “bad” or “good”, the weather is just the weather.
We get caught up in judging the weather and then using those judgements to make decisions.
What my VOD (Voice of Doubt) says: “I can’t take my walk because the weather is bad and I don’t feel like walking in bad weather” 😳
What I say to myself in response: "Um, well, you can choose to use that fucked up VOD ‘logic' or you can decide that walking is an activity that you have committed to for a multitude of reasons (I love to connect with nature, walking clears my head and grounds me for the rest of the day, walking is healthy and I see myself as a healthy person, one important way to deal with my Anxiety is to practice being uncomfortable, etc.) and that you are going to take your walk regardless of the weather conditions." 🙌
Let’s be clear I don’t actually feel motivated to put spend an hour (that is an extreme exaggeration) putting on multiple layers of clothing on and go for a walk with my dog when the outdoor temperature is below 30 degrees. 😬
I don’t usually feel motivated to do things I find boring or tedious either. If I waited until I felt liked doing any of these things, my family would be on the front page of the newspaper for having been buried alive under a mountain of laundry and my business would be in the toilet since I would have no clients because I wouldn’t have done any marketing or systems maintenance to keep my business running smoothly 😜
I am not posting pictures of my morning walks when the wind chill is -10 🥶 to Inspire or Motivate you to take bone chilling walks or to cause your VOD to shame you for not walking in the shitty weather.
I am posting these pictures to share my experience in learning how to take Actionwhether I “feel” like it or not!
We talk a lot about all of the amazing things that we “want” to do, so why aren’t we doing most of it? We feel inspired easily enough some times, but where we hit the wall is that we wait to feel motivated so what happens is that the most important part of the equation doesn’t happen, we don’t take Action 😩
Since I deal exclusively with clients who are experiencing Anxiety including a very loud VOD, chronic worry, and Imposter Syndrome, I see the Mental Masturbation ALL.THE. TIME. 😲
We (and I say we ‘cause I am a Master Mental Masturbator Myself 😉) get so stuck in the “thinking about it” phase and the “I don’t feel like ALL of the conditions are RIGHT” phase that we definitely find ourselves challenged in the "where the rubber meets the road" in the TAKING ACTION part!
How does this apply to business?
To begin with, we start applying this Taking Action First idea to our personal lives. When we are willing to apply it to our personal lives, it will also make a positive impact in our business lives 🙌
Second, we focus on how our VOD really digs at our core beliefs about not being good enough, smart enough, tough enough, or whatever enough to take the Action steps necessary to either start or stick with our hopes and dreams of building our own business. 👣
When I first started being willing to talk about leaving my agency job to be in business for myself, a few of my colleagues expressed a similar interest. We even went to so far as to look at office space together. It was exciting to me to think about not having to do this business thing alone. My VOD was loud and clear that I “need” others to do this with me so that we could “make sure” that it would work. 🙄
So why am I a solo practitioner in business for myself? Because, at the time, I was the only one of the three of us who was ready and willing to take the uncomfortable Action and move forward. I talked back to my VOD and took the Action steps necessary to move forward AND I proved to myself that I did not “need” the others and that “making sure” is just an illusion 😜
Hey, we all take Action in our own time. No judgement here!
I get that there are a lot of factors (financial, emotions, physical to name a few) that go into our decisions about our futures AND I am challenging you to consider whether your Anxiety, VOD, chronic worry, or Imposter Syndrome Bullshit have you convinced that you have to “feel Motivated” and that you have to “make sure” all of the external conditions are “right" in order to take the Action steps necessary to move forward. 🤔
This is pretty big deal so I suspect we will be chatting about this on the regular.
For today, hit reply and share one thing that you “want” to do, but have been putting off the Action steps waiting to “feel Motivated” to do them….😘
A few days ago I heard someone mention that by January 12th the majority of the population who got themselves all worked up and followed the crowd by making a New Year’s Resolution have, in less than two weeks, blown those resolutions 😳
Are you a resolution maker?
Do you get caught up in the hype and make a New Year’s Resolution?
If you do, have you broken it already?
Now don’t get me wrong (and don't let your Anxiety tell you that I am shaming you 😝). I get how easy it is to get caught up in this seemingly harmless yearly tradition!
Identifying old habits that are not working for us and committing to make changes is top shelf shit 👊
However, most of us go about making those changes at the “wrong” time and in the “wrong” way 🤔 (yes, I put the word "wrong" in quotes because I do not believe in right/wrong AND I got your attention, yes?)
For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere at least, this time of year (Winter) is a time of slowing down, reflecting, and hibernating.
Why would we expect ourselves to commit to a daunting new exercise regimen or have the willpower to go from stuffing our faces with Christmas cookies to allowing them to sit on the counter for more than five minutes🙄
The other thing that I noticed in December was all of the business folks yammering about how they were doing all this planning for the new year. 😩
They were all like, “Buy this complicated planner, and then plan your whole year out to the most minute detail, and then turn around sixteen times, stand on your head, and now you will have a successful year in business" 😬
Yeah, there was this thing called Christmas barreling down on me (oh and my daughter’s birthday just before it) so I was kind of focused on those important family commitments 😳
Why do we insist on taking a time of year when we can so easily be stressed out dealing with commitments and obligations and decide to judge ourselves as not good enough so we have to resolve to better ourselves all the while knowing, on some level, that we are just setting ourselves up for “failure” and self flagellation?
Yeah, so while you may well have forgotten this by next year (unless you write it in your fancy planner and are still looking at it next December 😉) I’m going to advocate that we focus on reflection and self care during the Holidays and then calmly and with curiosity look forward to that bright and shiny New Year with excitement rather than the dread of “fixing” ourselves.
While I did work and did do some amount of planning (like buying the simplest planner I could find with the best cover quote I could find), it is actually the first few weeks of January when I get my best planning and goal setting for the year done 🙌
January is historically more “quiet” and I embrace the quiet, do my best say “no” to too many social obligations, and take every chance I get to hibernate.
It is during this quiet hibernation time that my best ideas make themselves known. This is when I can start to discern which of my amazing ideas will get the attention and focus that it deserves.
How do I do this magical and elusive “planning” thing?
By being less caught up in the goals (to grow my business) and more focused on the incremental steps I can take toward that goal (talk about my business offerings in person or email or on social media one time each day, spend 15 minutes each day taming my email inbox).
James Clear’s “Atomic Habits” points out that it is the daily 1% incremental changes that support us in making our way, one step at a time, toward our bigger goals.
This explains why resolutions “fail” 🧐
It is because we don’t put the habits into place to support ourselves in actually taking the steps from where we are to where we aspire to be.
For those of us with a very loud VOD (voice of doubt) it can be overwhelming to have so many sources of pressure to set specific goals, use a specific planner, or even to make a resolution.
We get caught up in what everyone else is doing, or using, or telling us we “should” be doing that we lose our Connection to our own Inner Guidance system 😔
Our Anxiety loves to convince us that it is in charge and then get us lost in the spinning wheel of indecision, making choices based on obligation, perceived failure, self judgement, and just that overall sucky feeling of stuckness (which is not a word AND I am using it anyway because I am the boss of me 😜).
Your turn ...
How are you going to talk back to your VOD and cut through your cloud of overwhelm and choose one incremental step to move toward your goal this year?
Shoot me and email (click here) and share your One Thing 🙌
I’m eternally curious AND I answer every email 😘
This is my time of year to party 🥳
It started 52 years ago when I made my arrival on the planet for this incarnation. I’m an Epiphany Baby, so Happy Birthday to me!
Then five years ago I took the leap and went full-time into Private Practice, so Happy Anniversary to me!
More recently, like as of Friday, I added another thing to celebrate: a successful premier workshop in my Demote Your Doubt: Be the Boss in Your Business series, so Happy Successful Workshop for me!
I’m feeling a bit like a Queen at the moment….or at least a Duchess 😜 It hasn't always been easy to toot my own horn or call attention to myself AND today I am more willing to do just that 🙌
Anyway thanks for hanging out with me on my birthday 😍
What shall we talk about? It has to be something a least a little deep, because I am not a fan of small talk 😝
How about what it takes to make it to a 5 year Anniversary in Business?
Let me tell you that story 🤓
Once upon a time I was a girl with a dream.
That dream was kind of blurry, but from what I could make out (and what I was experiencing in real life) was that most of the people in charge and bossing me around were morons (don’t get your panties in a wad....not all of them and not all of the time...it just makes for a good story 😜)
What I took from that was I had two choices: 1) I could stick around, bitch a lot, drink a lot, and be miserable or 2) take action and be my own boss.
I chose what was behind Door #2 and haven’t (often) looked back.
Does being my own boss suck sometimes?
Why yes, yes it does.
I don’t get to blame shit on my boss or coworkers, ‘cause I’m a one person show. I am solely responsible for it all, the good, bad, and the ugly.
Would I ever consider (more than briefly) throwing in the towel and finding a job where I just have to show up and someone else is in charge?
Nope, not a chance 😉
For all of the shit sandwiches* that I have had (and will continue to) eat , the freedom and ability to be responsible for the good, the bad, and the ugly makes it totally worth it for me. *Mark Manson "Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck" reference
Isn’t it interesting that so much of this can be boiled down to perspective?
It reminds me of a cartoon I saw many years ago (I am so about to date myself 😳) where two kids were outside of a school room banging chalk erasers on the brick wall. One kid says to the other “What bad thing did you do to get this punishment?” while the other kid looks confused and replies, “I volunteered to do this fun job!” (You have no idea how much time I spent attempting to track down the original cartoon, to no avail 😩).
Yes, being our own bosses when Anxiety and it’s whole clan of misfits (Worry, VOD, and Imposter just to name a few) want to run the show can be exhausting AND when we put the clan members in their place at the foot rather than the head of the table, owning and running our own businesses can be Totally Kick Ass!
So how have I made the past 5 years successful?
A whole lot of “I don’t know what the fuck I’m doing, but I’m going to do it anyway” 😳😬😂
What did that actually look like?
Having ideas, reseaching ways to make the ideas happen, taking the action steps to make the ideas into reality, and then wash, rinse, repeat.
So many coaches are on the scene doing their best to appeal to our desire to take shortcuts.
Now I’m not saying an occasional shortcut isn’t awesome AND I’ve learned my best lessons by going the long way around.
I have made a shit ton (which is more than a ton and less than a fuck ton) of mistakes AND turned each and every one of them into an opportunity (even if the only opportunity was to tell a great story about what not to do 😬).
Have I stumbled and even fallen?
Yep, I have experienced a range of emotions including joy, jealousy, sorrow, stubborn, fear, frustration, anger, and anxiety (just to name just a few 😉).
When the members of my Anxiety clan show up (and they drop by unannounced regularly 🙄), I deal with them.
No avoiding, no procrastinating, no running and hiding (OK, that’s kind of a lie, ‘cause every once in awhile there is a coup and I go hide in a corner and regroup and then come back out and get back in the driver’s seat 😲) and no quitting!
When shit gets real and I’m feeling on shaky ground, I rally my troops both internal and external 🤗
One of the best investments in myself and in my business (and has contributed to my success) has been my own coaching. 🤩
Having a coach as part of my support team (along with my family, friends, accountant, bookeeper, biweekly housecleaner/organizer, and part-time office assistant) has been the #1 Best Investment (yes even better than any technology or book or course or workshop) that I have made as a business owner 🙌
Coaches keep us focused, accountable, and moving forward.
They listen to us vent and then help us problem solve and get back on track. They put fresh eyes on our blurry bump in the road and suddenly the path gets clearer. They kick our ass and cheer us on as we navigate our journey.
So, while I might be a wee bit biased (since I am a coach myself 😊) about coaching, I do believe wholeheartedly that hiring my coach was the #1 best investment that I have made and that it has brought me the highest ROI (return on investment) possible 😘
Alright, that’s deep enough. I’m off to celebrate my day with an awesome brunch buffet with part of my support team (my family).
Thanks for celebrating with me 🤩🎉🤩🎉