My Permission Slip to You
The Process IS the Progress
Have you ever noticed how easy it is to help someone else along their obviously clear path in life, yet hard to break down the big picture in your own life?
Welcome to my world.. Whether I’m doing a corporate workshop or private coaching or consulting, I can quickly and easily see the puzzle pieces and get the full picture.. But when I pour out the puzzle that is my own mind I don’t even know how to begin looking for the corners or edge pieces.
This got me wondering...
Why is it that other people’s life puzzles are so much easier to put together than your own?
Perhaps you’re like me and feel like there is so much to do, see, and share that it feels impossible to start because your mind is jetting from one puzzle piece to the next.
I’m an absorber of information. I love to learn. And the more knowledge I take in, the harder it is to move forward. I feel trapped. Thinking if I write something about my current process now it will have developed, grown, and changed by this time next year (or next week or tomorrow).
The problem with not getting started is that you have nowhere to refer back to. No marker of all the growth from who you were a year ago. No way of finding those lost gems that could help the future you to expand.
Do you ever find yourself looking at stunning websites? Seeing how clear, focused and powerful their message is? Thinking yes! This makes sense, I know this stuff. Why didn’t I think to do this exact same thing?
I look at beautifully mastered frameworks by BJ Fogg, Guru Jagat or Ken Wilber and think I’m not that clear yet. My framework hasn’t quite emerged. It’s not as powerful as theirs. I’ll just wait until I have it all figured out, then I’ll write it all down and share it.
Sound familiar? And if you’re saying, “Comparison is the thief of joy,” you’re absolutely right! I would also say: Comparison is the thief of life.
But then I remember that these amazing leaders we’re learning so much from are growing and developing too.
You’re kidding yourself if you think they haven’t grown and developed from where they were a year ago.
Not having all the answers they started in the middle of their journey anyway.
What you see when you visit these polished websites and seminars is the end product. Not the endless nights (months, years, decades) of uncertainty and questioning and development.
They lived into it and through it to become what they are and share what they are sharing. And, you can, too.
Just like you and me, these people started from where they were at. They took their own life experiences, their own knowledge, their own wisdom, their skills and trusted themselves enough to invest and believe in the process. (SO hard sometimes!)
I invite you to invest in your own vulnerable process.
That is what this blog is ultimately about right now. It’s me sharing the process, my process of having a framework that has helped so many, but feels not good enough somehow. Not fully cooked.
It feels messy, vulnerable, unclear.
And I like to be the opposite of that! I realized that I’ve often been faced with new challenges. Ones that there were no solutions I could reference, so there was no one I could call or ask for advice. I realized, too, that many successful leaders also faced similar challenges. In fact,
...the most successful leaders don’t always know what to do when they’re leading, but they do know that in order to lead successfully they must share that.
One of my clients had a tech company with a software solution that supported large healthcare companies. His startup faced a big challenge and a team leader came to ask his advice.
The question was basically: Do you think we should do this?
My client’s reply shifted the trajectory of the team and the company.
He said: I don’t know. I’ve never been in this situation before, none of us have.
What I do know is that together we are capable of coming up with the answer.
In that moment, the team leader stopped looking for “the right answer” and started looking for possible solutions they could evaluate and choose from.
He had permission to explore, provide options and be “wrong.”
And when you give yourself permission to truly be yourself, you give others permission to do the same.
And that is powerful.
Permission that what you are is okay. That how you think is okay. You are uniquely you, and the more you own your own uniqueness others will find commonality in their own uniqueness.
I'm not normal. I’ve never been normal, but part of me wants to be and is searching for it. As I get older I find that everyone feels this way. That is what we have in common. (Side note: There is no normal!)
So in giving myself permission to be transparent in my discoveries and vulnerable in my process I offer you a seat with me along the journey.
Working through a process and bringing you along
Like picking your nose in a car. You’ve seen the dude picking a winner as you wait to enter the freeway. That’s kinda how I’m feeling. I know y’all can see me and that makes me feel super exposed, but I also know y’all do it too.
Years ago I went to see a famous internet marketer who was speaking. She shared about getting a divorce, but she was completely closed off emotionally. She was sharing a vulnerable moment without any vulnerability.
It left me feeling like I paid for a show, but left without having an experience. This talk was fine, but if she had let herself feel what she was saying it would have been magic.
No connection was made.
Her own inability to be vulnerable created a disconnect. It made me feel like she was performing and the so-called vulnerable share was part of the performance to sell her products. I felt manipulated and that didn’t feel good.
Vulnerability is not what you share. It’s who you are being when you share it.
Vulnerability is raw. As hard as that may be, it’s what's going to help others feel connected to you. Because they too have felt naked in a room full of critics.
I am on a journey to expose myself through these writings in hopes that it gives you permission to have those unsure feelings too.
Growing up I had big feelings with no guidance on how to deal with them. My parents are wonderful people, but I didn’t think they were open to these big feelings. (In hindsight, they were, but I was a kid.)
So I shoved them down. Kept them to myself so as to not disrupt the people around me.
Because of that I don’t always know what feelings are okay.
What is my barometer?
Is it okay to feel this way? Is it okay to feel so strongly this way?
I am kind, and lean towards empathy as a first response. Yet I have learned that most people lean towards anger instead of hurt or upset. And in many spiritual circles anger is denigrated, made bad and wrong. It’s something to be feared and mitigated. (It’s not!)
Anger wasn’t even on my radar until my therapist pointed it out to me. Then it became psychoactive in my brain.
I became aware of my anger and all the places it was actually appropriate to feel angry.
And then more than ever I had to think about giving myself permission to feel pissed off. (I’ll tell you about that in another post.)
So in these pages I hope you see my process. I hope you begin to see the puzzle pieces click into place towards my own alignment and how I walk my talk no matter how messy it is. OMG it is SO messy some days! I'm living into my own truth that the process IS the progress. This process IS progress. And I hope you find meaning and connection through it all.
I miss human contact and know we do our best growing collectively, so please reach out. Share your own journey.
What are you giving yourself Permission to do?
What makes you feel vulnerable?
What are you afraid will happen if you decide to let your true nature be seen?
Today I give you permission to start making Tiny Habits in the direction of your dreams.
I give you permission to fail gloriously at something you love.
I give you permission to shine and be seen.