It’s often when we don’t want to do the thing and we still do it, that we have our biggest breakthroughs. So many things in our life never see the light of day because we don’t follow-through. We know we should be eating better, not procrastinating, letting go of old stories that don’t serve us, yet we still can’t figure out how to shake the inertia off. If you don’t want to change your life, I would recommend you skip today’s episode. Seriously though, there’s something so powerful about the discovery of desire before discipline that I know it must be shared – because it’s changed so much about how I live my life. I hope it does the same for you.
If you’re an overachiever like me, you’ve got the discipline part down pat. You tell me to do something by a certain date? You best believe it will get done. Maybe I won’t sleep or eat, but I’ll get that thing done. There’s nothing better than that feeling of doing the impossible. I’ve curbed this appetite over time as well as refined the ways in which I show up ready to do the work, but one thing I realized as I started deciding for myself what I wanted to do with my time, and where I wanted to put my precious work ethic was that I needed to do just that. Decide.
With so many options available to the achiever, what do you pick? How do you know you’re planting the seeds in the right place? And what if you’re finally staring up at a challenge that’s bigger than anything you’ve ever done before? One that requires not just one step, but many countless steps in a new direction? Without the accountability of a boss or a workout partner, how do you create the pressure you need to get the things done? How do you get up morning after morning and not sleep in so that you can exercise?
The answer is really simple. It’s in getting to that desire before you get to the discipline. It’s in wanting that thing you want so bad that it’s not only so clear in your mind, but it’s also so desirable. You won’t change your eating habits if you see an empty plate and starvation in your mind’s eye (nor should you). You will change your eating habits if you see a life filled with movement, energy, aliveness and vibrancy. You won’t pursue the new path if all you see is the tech troubles you will have as you launch a new website or the admin work you’ll be doing that you think is beneath you. You will pursue the new path if you imagine yourself as being a person who can figure out almost anything and has enough humility and self worth to realize that while admin work isn’t worth her time, right now she just has to figure it out.
We have to get out of our heads and into our hearts. We have to see our goals as so attractive and so desirable that it will give us the discipline to do the hard things day in and day out. Life isn’t supposed to be easy, but it doesn’t have to feel bad all the time. You don’t have to punish yourself to deserve happiness or success. You don’t even have to get the job done in order to celebrate it. You just have to get yourself to the place where you can see that it’s worth it. That we never said it would be easy, but we did say it would be worth it. When you think back to all the accomplishments in your life, the things you’re truly proud of – were they all things that were super easy? Things that didn’t require some level of commitment and discipline? A level of strength and energy were likely required – one that’s above and beyond the standard. But you consider it a feat.
Why? Because it meant something to you. That toxic relationship or job you left. The education you received. The decision to love yourself deeply. The relationships and life you’ve created. They mean something to you and likely something on a deep and visceral level. Something you can feel palpably. Let yourself be moved to tears and emotion by the life that you want to have. Of letting your life have meaning, purpose and passion beyond what you can even imagine.
There are many times when I wonder to myself why I am doing this work. It’s definitely not easy to have a full 9-5 job while also creating all this content and coaching work as a mom and a wife. I never said to myself as a little girl, “I want to be an entrepreneur!!” What I did know though, is that I was deeply caring of other beings, animals and humans included. I did know that there was a latent desire to explore something more beyond the work I was currently doing. I also did know that when a tragic death occurred suddenly in my life, I immediately began to have this one verse play over and over in my mind, “I know I’m not using my gifts and impacting the world in the way that I can”.
I wanted to know what that call on my heart meant. I wanted to know how I can serve in a human way. I wanted to know what I should do with my life and how to spend my time. This desire to figure this out led me to my coaching work. This desire led me to my training work in my 9-5. It’s a calling, a mission, and a purpose to help others that led me to figuring out how to create a business while working a 9-5, launching a podcast, learning about social media, taking a ton of courses and investing my free time into learning everything I can and sharing it. I don’t think that without the desire to help, to connect to a power greater than me, to heal others, to heal myself and my family – would I have had the discipline to show up every single day.
If you don’t have the discipline to do the thing you want, ask yourself if you truly desire it? If you don’t, ask yourself if you have strong enough goals that would enable you to be disciplined. I don’t mean you have to be a martyr, overwork or burnout – but you know the difference between that and showing up for yourself and others consistently. What would it feel like to finally say yes to the thing you’ve wanted. To have yourself say that you’re doing something and actually do it. To take a big leap forward in terms of your health, career, finances, relationships, and spirituality. To connect with not only your head but with your heart. We’re often so afraid of truly desiring what we want because we’re so afraid of failing. We’re afraid of not being able to actually make the leap and falling through. What if it doesn’t work out? What if I can never do, be, or have the things I say I want? I remember thinking the same thing about my desire to switch careers and roles. To say you want something innately means that you currently don’t have it.
Yes, it means admitting that maybe what you have right now isn’t filling you up in the ways that you want. It also means that you’re making space and instead of being disciplined about the things you don’t want in your life, you’re now making space to be disciplined about pursuing what it is that you actually do want. People who don’t have goals are used by those who do. If you let your life take its own course without you putting your thumbprint in it, it will.
If you decided to put your thumbprint on your own life though, it means that you’ll have to let go of all the thoughts of how painful things will or could be and instead let the light shine in. See how good it could be, how you’ll change along the way, how you don’t have to know how to do it all right now, but you have to desire it. You have to lay to rest all the voices and ghosts that live within our minds and let a new life breath in. One that’s filled with hope, joy, determination and love.
Close your eyes right now and take a moment to hope. To dream. Close your eyes and see that beyond the life you have right here right now, is a magical reality. One filled with the family and relationships you desire. The small moments that are pure magic. The vibrancy, life-force energy and aliveness coursing through your veins. You are in a place where you feel that you are making progress, you see yourself growing in new ways. You know that it’s not easy but you see how worth it all is. The early mornings or the late nights are done with a full heart. You are able to take care of yourself and the ones you love. You have enough time and space for it all. Even if you don’t feel that way today, feel into now. See yoursel breathing time and space into each moment. Knowing that you’re able to make decisions you’re empowered by. That your confidence comes from learning who you are in this next phase and who you want to be as you step into your future. Knowing that the time slows down and expands as you look deeply into each moment and see how beautiful life truly is. Knowing that time speeds up when you step fully into both the joy and the pain without skipping a beat. Growing your capacity to handle the steps and hardships – as well as receive what’s on your hearts desire. Feel yourself growing and expanding to be able to take it all in. See yourself having it all and how it feels to step into that new life. Breathe it in fully and breathe it out. Know that it’s done. In a plane that’s not yet here, it’s already completed and lived. See it with such certainty that you know now that your one job is to believe it, to step into it, and desire it.
If you want help designing your life and uncovering your soul’s desires, you’ll want to join my free Design Your Day workshop. RSVP now to get a spot and I’ll share with you the strategies and tools I use daily to shift my mindset, change careers and improve my health. Together, we’ll start the process of designing a magical life. Go to https://mayempson.com/designyourday to sign up.
I’m also opening enrollment into the Intuitive Leadership Coaching Group Experience – months of focus, accountability and consistent support to heal, grow, and expand. We’ll take your goal and do it the Intuitive Leader way, with spirituality, achievement, earth energy and harmony taken into account. If you feel that this resonates, check it out here at https://mayempson.com/intuitiveleadership.