As I begin this journey of the next year of my life, (and the last year as a forty-something) I have been doing a lot of contemplation, learning and focusing on what is important to me.
If you are like me and heading to that “next stage” of your journey, what do you think about where you are currently at?
Do you think you are where you want to be? Do you have enough time, money, energy and fun?
What questions are you thinking about as you approach your next stage of life?
This year my questions are: How to Advance Toward my Goals and Vision, and How to Be my Best Self Everyday
Every year I have all these great big goals and ambitions. This year it is probably on my mind even more so because I have certain ideals of where I want to be when I do turn 50.
For me, the thing is I DON’T have great big ambitions to be a “world traveler”, or to live a “laptop lifestyle” or even to stop working and be retired at age 50. Many people do, and that’s awesome, it’s just not really me.
- How do I best manage my health and weight loss journey?
- How do I go about getting all of my debt paid off and put more money away for that “rainy day”?
- How do I be the parent that is patient, loving and kind while still showing my children that having drive, initiative and doing your very best are also requirements in life?
- How do I/we enjoy each and every day, even when it’s just about the boring “dailies” and have make the journey fun and full of joy?
- How do I enjoy the hectic and demanding schedule of a business owner, leader, mom, daughter, grandma, friend (and so on you get the idea), without being stressed out and anxious all of the time?
- How do I bring my best self in to every situation to best serve the people I want to serve?
Basically, how do I go about living the “good life” in all for aspects: Health, Wealth, Love and Happiness in the life that I currently lead, and what adjustments to I need to make in order for it to be even better? How do I be my best self in all of the above scenarios?
Last year, I set out with 7 Intentions of what I wanted to accomplish. I made significant progress in many of them, and still need to work on a few of them. I am not upset about that. I know life is a continual process of striving to be better than you were yesterday.
But back to the question.
How to Be Your Best Self? (I’m Starting with These 10 Things)
How to be your best self is really a question that each person has to answer for themselves. For a mom, it would mean something totally different than it would for a business executive.
In my opinion, the basics of “being your best self”, or at least good list of where to start:
- Have a clear vision of who you want to be, and honor it.
- Feel like you are making progress and advancing toward that vision every day.
- Be fully present and engaged in your life. (One of my BIGGEST problems is distractions and little emergencies that come up.)
- Develop habits and routines that set you up for success.
- Do more of what you love and really enjoy (ideally as your job or career), and less of what you don’t.
- Be of service to others – offer to do things, provide value, do the extra, be more thoughtful.
- Avoid things/people that do not serve you (for example – drama on social media, negative news, even negative self talk).
- Take care of your health, diet and exercise. (self care)
- Take time to PLAY.
- Life with Integrity. Be true to your word, and honor your commitments.
The list is NOT in a particular order of importance, they are all important.
I like what Brendon Burchard has to say on the subject in his book High Performance Habits. I’m actually listening to the audio version of the book right now as well as using his High Performance planner.
Brendon suggests that you need to have clarity in everything that you do. First and foremost, you need to have clarity in what direction you want to go in life. But even after that, he says that the best way to move in that clear direction, is to take the time and ask several specific questions of yourself before starting any new activity in a day.
The questions that help me the most are:
- Who do you want to be today?
- How do you want to interact with others today?
- Is this moving me toward my vision and goals?
I’ve been asking myself these to simple questions each morning, and several times through out the day. What I find is that asking these questions pulls me back into the moment. I am able to focus on what I want the outcome to be and then act to achieve that outcome.
For example, mornings in my house are really hectic.
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I have 5 kids getting ready to be out the door and dropped off on time. I have our schedule on how to accomplish this down to an art including a biit of extra wiggle room “just in case”.
Everything goes smoothly except for when one of them has a longer tantrum than normal, or one of them starts fooling around and getting the rest of them off schedule…. you know how it can go with a big crew of kids.
Some mornings, it’s enough to make me lose my shit (and sadly some mornings, I do!)
Now every day before I go wake them up, I take even just 2 minutes to visualize the morning, and the outcome that I want to achieve.
Desired Outcome: I want to have a peaceful morning. I want no major tantrums, I want my kids happy and ready to start the day where they can learn and grow. I ALSO want to be out the door on time 😉
Possible Result: When I take the 2 minutes to visualize it, the morning runs smoother. I know that I have to show up with patience, I have to be tolerant of my one little guy (who is quite the screamer). I also must be the one that keeps everyone focused and moving toward the finish line.
If I can make it fun for the kids, they move a lot easier, listen better, and we all get ready with time to spare. Some mornings (if you were a fly on the wall), you would even see us doing a conga line and singing our “Pee Pee song” to go pee pee on the potty LOL.
When I set my intention and the tone for the rest of the family, things really run a lot smoother. I am 100% focused in that moment and on getting everyone off with a positive start to the day.
If I can manage that – I can move into my next time block with an attitude of winning. I am more energetic, more positive, and eager to have a productive focused day.
When I am not able to accomplish that, it sets the rest of my day on a negative tone, I feel exhausted and things start to snowball.
Some days I get this spot on and we all have a really positive day. Other days, I feel like one of those parents that is constantly “nagging, bitching, and screaming”, by the time all the kids are dropped off I feel exhausted and ready to give up.
I can totally see why so many mom start posting on Facebook about how it’s 9:00 AM and and we need wine lol.
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What if we re-frame our thinking?
What if instead of asking the question of “How to be your best self?”, and thinking that we are going to wake up one morning BEING our best selves. What if we think of it as a journey?
Think of it like wanting to get in shape. We can’t just go to the gym one day and have a beautiful body – we have to go several days a weeks over a long-term in order to build those muscles.
What if becoming our best self is the same process? It’s a daily journey of becoming more than who you were the day before. We have to work on it daily, keep learning and growing …. daily?
That is exactly HOW I am going to tackle the question: How to become your best self.
Some days I’m going to do awesome, be a great mom, be right on point with my business goals and objectives, eat a totally clean keto lifestyle. Other days (like yesterday), I’m going to miss and have a handful or two of munchies at my child’s birthday party.
The point for me is that I am constantly moving toward it, and that I work to be better than I was yesterday.
As I mentioned earlier, I’ve been really getting a lot out of High Performance Habits by Brendon Burchard. In fact, last night I ordered a hard copy because I want to be able to take notes, highlight key points and really study the Habits of High Performers.
If becoming your best self is something that you’ve been striving to do, Brendon’s book offers some really great information. Check it out through the link below.
As always, I would love to hear your thoughts on the matter.
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