What does it really take to be successful? In your job, in your relationships, in your business, in your life. Very few people that are viewed as “the most successful” talk about what it really took to get there. The number of times that I have compared myself to the “successful”, “better looking”, “more intelligent” people out there is too many to even begin to count. I try to focus on what I can control not what I can’t. I make decisions out of my values not what others look like they are accomplishing. I practice being positive and grateful, I meditate, I exercise, I eat well, I sleep well, I persevere, I take risks, I see challenges as opportunities… you name it and I do everything “right’ yet I still have moments like I did this weekend where I feel like I'm doing everything wrong. Do you ever get that feeling? It's easy to slip into this pattern of comparison and spiral from there. I've been there many times, and it's okay.
Over the weekend a few subscription cancellation notifications happened to land in my inbox from my online wellness program called, The Practice. My thoughts were incredibly negative and consuming. I kept thinking, “what am I doing wrong?”, “what I’m offering is actually really really valuable and can truly change a persons life, am I the only one that sees this?”, “what can I do more of, less of?”, “what’s wrong with me?”, “maybe I need to be more like the “successful” people and just promise that people will get happier and be skinnier after doing the program because apparently that’s all that matters”. Yikes…. calm down Mal.
Before I started The Practice, my online wellness program, I was told to get very clear on what my “guarantee is” and to establish the values of The Practice itself almost as if The Practice were a program. If and when I am criticized, or if someone decides to no longer work with me, or cancels their membership, I can ask myself if I lived up to my guarantee and check if the values of the program were aligned. That way, in theory I would be able to remove or be able to separate any deeper emotional attachment I might otherwise make.
Anyone who works with me knows and can expect to have a strong, nurturing leader/coach who will warmly encourage continuous improvement of yourself, others and bring community together. I push boundaries in the pursuit of growth, achievement, greatness.
The values of The Practice (if the business was a person) are freedom, connection and autonomy.
The Practice should create a sense of inner freedom in your mindset, establish connection to self and others and encourage autonomy so you are empowered to take your health into your own hands without boundaries or excuses.
When I saw the cancellations, I went through my process of checking if the guarantee and the values of The Practice were still aligned and tried to separate any personal feelings of failure or not doing a good enough job. Even though I could answer yes to the guarantee and the values, I still couldn’t shake this feeling. I fell back into the habit of comparing what I have to everyone else and went down a pretty negative spiral.
My business partner Scott and his fiancé sent me a link to a really great speech by Vanessa Van Edwards. I was so incredibly inspired by her vulnerability, honesty and truth about what it actually took for her to be the success she is as an entrepreneur and that this feeling I'm having is NORMAL. No success, no result, no accomplishment in this world happened over night. It was incredibly refreshing to hear her talk straight from her heart. I instantly felt lighter and more positive. What I realized in that moment is how important it is to surround yourself with the right people, not necessarily as many people as you can. It's the right people who enhance and brighten your light not take it away.
It takes years of patience, of perseverance and consistency in whatever it is you are trying to achieve. I was reminded of the fact that my business just started 3 months ago and to look at every cancellation as a learning experience, every piece of feedback as an opportunity to be better, every day is a day that I get to live my purpose and help others. Also, to recognize how much Scott and I have grown this amazing business of ours in SUCH a short amount of time. Be proud. Be loud. I found my wave, I just need to keep paddling to catch it especially through the more turbulent waters. That's where true strength and perseverance is built. A wise fish once said, “just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming, swimming, swimming” ;)- Dori, Finding Nemo.
It’s okay to be human and have those low points where you feel like I did. In fact, I’d love to hear more about it because too often we just hear about the end result and not about the years and years of patience, discipline, determination and perseverance it took to get there. Feel free to leave a comment below if you would like to share a struggle that you can now say is a breakthrough (big or small). It can be a struggle with health, with your job, a relationship, anything.
I’ll leave you with this. Paddle into it, even when it’s gut wrenchingly uncomfortable, but make the choice to paddle. If you back off, give up and let that heavy wave take you down you’re going to miss out on the greatest opportunity yet. You just don’t know when that perfect set is going to roll in, but be ready for it, and don’t be afraid to share the thousands of bails with the world that you took before you experience that perfect moment of catching that monumental wave. Why? Because together, we are stronger.
P.S. Not sure if you knew this, but I am offering an entire month for free in my online wellness program, The Practice. You'll get a holistic wellness program designed for real people by real people. Check it out here.
Thanks for tuning in as always!