Sometimes life can feel very tough, unfair or even impossible and you know, sometimes it is.I know most of you who read my blog are in some form of ‘helping’ profession – so we know the answers don’t we? You know the ones, the clichés – you choose how you react, your responsible for what you attract into your life, it’s all about your attitude etc etc. And to some extent this is all true, although not necessarily immediately helpful when you find yourself or a loved one in the middle of a crisis.
So why the uncharacteristic gloom? Well, I believe that sometimes you need to go there to come back. It’s important to acknowledge when you feel you’ve been dealt a rough deal, to feel the pain, and see what it teaches you. However it’s equally important to hold on to where you are going, especially when life deals you a rough deal.
I love Whoopi’s quote,
“Children of the world – never give up on your dream”
Your dream matters; and having something big, maybe scary, perhaps not quite realistic out there waiting for us matters too. It is this that drives us to be who we really are, to find our inner potential and to sparkle. You can spot the people who have this, and you can spot those who’ve lost it. The difference is often as simple as what we believe, what habits we have and what we fill our lives with. Our dreams get lost because of conflict between our desires and what we believe to be possible. For this read what we believe about ourselves and our emotional state.
Of course life gets in the way, we focus on the practical day to day stuff that has to get done. So why is it some people fly and sparkle and get what they set out to and some don’t?
A recent client of mine really struggles with this – she says some people are just lucky and she’s not! People don’t help her or support her in the way others get supported and it everything is more difficult for her because she has no support. Well there are a whole load of value judgments to work with there, (and I do like clients who make my life this easy). The key thing I want to pick up on though is being lucky.
Luck isn’t about some fairy godmother shining down on you and making things happen; it’s about a strategy, knowing what you want, who can help you get it, and how you can engage them in your mission.
Luck is about believing in yourself, by this I don’t mean always unconditionally believing you’re good at everything you do and its easy – if your there you’re probably too settled in your comfort zone and not following your dream!
By believing in yourself I mean truly believing that you deserve your dream, that you have the internal resources (however deeply buried) to achieve your dream and that you can ask others for help because you are worth it.
Believing in yourself also means managing your emotions – or dealing with the doubters (internal and external). Look at your life patterns if you don’t feel lucky, what happens when someone else dismisses your idea or dream, how do you react? Do you go into instant meltdown and disregard your idea as not possible, do you get angry and spend the next half hour trying to justify your position to yourself. Or do you see it for what it is, their perception, often given out of kindness or concern for you – especially if they are you family or friends, but limiting non the less. Lucky people have learned to manage other peoples’ perceptions, take what is useful and disregard the rest. They also learn to seek council or support from those who stretch them, help them towards their goal, which of course reinforces their sense of worth and value.
Internal doubts are even more important to manage. Lucky or successful people don’t have an unconditional belief they can do anything brilliantly – they have just as many doubts about their ability and as many moments of overwhelm as people who believe themselves to be unlucky. They just have better strategies for dealing with them. One of the main strategies being an underlying self worth, this enables them to separate the immediately “scary task” from their perception of themselves as a successful human being! Another is not worrying too much about the ‘what if’s’, living life in the present.
Perhaps the most important characteristic of a lucky person is the ability to take action that moves them towards their dream. Luck isn’t something that just happens, it’s something we have to work at. We have the emotional resource to protect ourselves from those who doubt us – most of the time. We put ourselves in places and with people that stretch us, raise our game and create opportunities we wouldn’t otherwise have; and when these opportunities present themselves lucky people grab them. We don’t talk ourselves out of them with reasons why we can’t do it – often excuses created to protect ourselves from perceived failure.
Lucky people have this deep held belief that we deserve our dream, we find the necessary resources (internal and external) to keep us on our journey. Of course we have the occasional wobble when life deals a curve ball; but we do choose how respond to stuff, sometimes that’s with hurt and anger, and that’s ok. In the end it’s what we learn from it that builds our coping strategies, resilience and self worth.
So what do you need to do to be one of the ‘lucky ones’? Do you have your dream, know what lights you up, excites you and makes you want to leap up and grab life? If not how can you go about re discovering it – because you had it once. Even though you probably know all this stuff and are brilliant at doing it with your clients, you need to take the time, even a few minutes a day, to do it for yourself too. Identify what gets in your way, what helps you and what’s going on when you feel like you’re really alive.
Go out and create your own luck, and live your dream.