3 Years of Podcasts, Courses, Coaching, Books, and Blogs, From All the Experts, and Here’s What it Ultimately Adds Up To

Kristi writes at Medium and JugglingNormal. This article first appeared here, and is reproduced in full with permission.

I became a coach for a million reasons.

I want to help people.

The world is missing out on the gifts of the women who need my help.

I love leadership, development, potential, and success.

When I’m not with my family, I want to spend my time learning and investing in what I love and get paid for it.

And a million more reasons.

For over three years now, I’ve been reading, writing, coaching, learning, and creating every day. It’s been a dream.

I’ve learned so much. So much in fact, that there’s a part of me that wants to find a little beach hideout and write all day and all night and knock out a book or two, a blog, and a couple of courses that capture all the best ideas and inspirational insights, a secret of life encyclopedia of sorts.

In the meantime, to sum it up, there are three fundamental ideas from which everything seems to flow.

I don’t have a beach house yet, and I can’t commit to writing full-time, because of real-life, three kids, and income. Which brings me to the first key lesson:

1. Limiting beliefs will undermine your goals, ambitions, and life if you don’t overcome them.

“I can’t”, “I don’t” — did you catch that?

Real-life? Kids? Income? Are those actual limitations, or do I have limiting beliefs about them? It depends. If you see them as obstacles to overcome, as circumstances to navigate, or they are preventing you from doing what you want to do, they can be limiting.

It’s important to remember that beliefs were once just ideas. Then they became opinions, which later transformed into beliefs. And beliefs can be changed.

If you change your perspective, you change your ideas, and if you change your ideas, you change your opinion, and if you change your opinion, you can change your beliefs. Then, the way you think about the very same things may not be limiting at all.

What if I said, I’m doing that right now — writing The Beach Hideaway Secret of Life Encyclopedia — you would believe me, just as you believed me when I said I wasn’t. That’s a reality shift.

What we do, how we spend our time, what we invest in, what we pay attention to, and what we believe defines our reality. If we see things as priorities, choices we made in concert with our future, instead of limitations, that’s empowering.

Being a parent, being married, having a job, and making money is a choice. We make layers upon layers of choices with implications that sometimes last a lifetime.

What we prioritize matters, how we frame our decisions is essential, and what we believe about our choices creates our reality.

Where we get in trouble is when our choices don’t match our priorities, when we feel out of alignment, or at odds with what we really want. Our aspirations don’t have to match our reality, but our reality must align with our values. Otherwise, we are always struggling, playing catch up, never enough, resentful, angry, or disappointed.

Those feelings are signs that we aren’t 100% sure, but when we invest in our future, and know ourselves well, transcending beliefs flood our brains. Everything feels possible. We have confidence and optimism. At that point, it’s time to move forward.

Which brings me to the second key lesson:

2. If you’re not learning, what’s the point?

Life is meant to be experienced: Deeply engaged with, experimented with, played with, and enjoyed; savored even. To understand and appreciate it at that level means to try it on, do lots of things, and go deeper. We often think of learning as a mental activity, but learning is a whole-body whole-self experience that lasts for a lifetime.

There are eight ways to learn:

  1. Visual (spatial)
  2. Aural (auditory, musical)
  3. Verbal (linguistic)
  4. Physical (kinesthetic)
  5. Logical (mathematical)
  6. Social (interpersonal)
  7. Solitary (intrapersonal)
  8. Naturalistic (nature)

If, at any point, we decide that who we are, what we know, and what will happen are fixed, that’s it. That’s the beginning of our decline. It often corresponds to illness, fragility, or apathy. If that’s all there is, there is no wonder, hope, sense of possibility, or potential to realize. It is as good as it gets.

When we get to that place, it’s self-fulfilling. It can look like resignation, suffering, and or a fatalistic outlook.

Learning is the key to avoiding that heartbreak. Mindset. Skillset. Toolset. If you want to change your life, if you wish to be a little better, have everything you ever imagined, or are somewhere in between, it takes new skills, new beliefs, new habits, and new perspectives.

Your approach, attitude, outlook, capacity, competencies, strategies, ideas, and systems must evolve. You can develop a personal algorithm of sorts for what matters and combine the variables to get the results you want.

At the foundation is education, and the time to start learning and experimenting was yesterday. Which brings me to my third point:

3. There is no such thing as good timing; there is only going for it. The timing will be right.

When we see others living the way we want to live, it can feel a little bit yucky. Even if we are inspired, we may also feel jealousy, impatience, or longing. When we observe life working out for others easier than it seemingly happens for us, it motivates us or deepens our attachment to our limiting beliefs.

When we see others that aren’t as qualified succeeding, we learn more, do more, and our urgency grows, or we feel resentment and resist even more.

Get in the game. Go for the things you want, try the stuff that’s calling to you, and make your move. No matter how scared we are, what the risks are, what it takes, how long the road ahead is, or who else has tried it first. The only way for us to have the life we want is to build it — It’s the only way.

Sure, there are shortcuts, there are resources, there are mentors, coaches, and friends. But it always comes back to us doing the work, finding our way, showing up, being consistent, putting the pieces together, and building it ourselves. Always. No matter the odds, no matter the starting point, no matter the person. And we have to see ourselves doing it to understand how to get to the next level.

We can start slowly. We can read a book or build a Pinterest board. We can take a course or tell our husband or start a side hustle. We can go full-out. We can quit our job or have a baby. We can move to Greece or launch a business or fall in love.

The pace isn’t significant. The start date isn’t essential (although the case can be made for starting today). How long it takes or if it looks like we thought it would, or what we actually do isn’t that important.

You can’t wait for a sign that the time is right, or look for conditions under which success is inevitable; no path guarantees an outcome. The important thing is to start. We start, we see what happens, we adjust on the fly, we get better, we do better, we keep going. We love our journey, we love our life, and, along the way, we learn to love ourselves.

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