Over the festive break, I was honoured to be asked by Ritu Ashrafi of The Lifester to be part of her #2015Queen project and share my reflections on 2014 and my hopes for the year ahead of us. (Not met the amazing women yet? Let me introduce you.)
My final question was “What will you be Queen of in 2015?” My reply? Of Carpe Diem. Of Seize the Day. To set aside fear and do it anyway. To enjoy the present without worries about the future.
Heck, that’s not much to ask of myself is it? 🙂 Let me put it in a little context. I’ve got great plans in mind for b-elastic to improve and grow what I can offer you as you stretch your life. I’ve got a house move on the horizon. I’ve got some big joint venture opportunities explore. I’ve got projects to deliver. And like you, I’ve got family and friends to spend time with all over the world, chores and errands to run, and, and, and, and…. Sound familiar?
Achieving change in your life and career isn’t all plain sailing. It can be a roller coaster, for you and those around you. It can feel easier to procrastinate, to postpone or to give up.
Here’s what I’m doing to seize my day:
Say yes to others
My typical decision making process works on being fairly conservative. That said, I have had huge success by putting myself out there. So for now, I’m saying yes and holding to the thought that whatever plays out will be a positive in some way. Changing my mindset and being open to what good might comes really helps me to say yes with confidence.
Declutter my head
Allowing the spin of dithering to stay in my head just enables it to grow and grow. I stay stuck. Putting it on paper gives me a way to reality check it. One of the consulting tools I learnt was MoSCoW – Musts, Shoulds, Coulds and Woulds – it’s a prioritisation tool. Using this, I can do a quick review: Must I do this? Should I, Could I? Would I? I gather what’s important and urgent as well as what’s exciting and motivational.
Seek smart integration
Like many of you, I’m a sucker for a great combo deal and if they let me get more from my day – brilliant! I’m not talking multitasking; I mean clever combining of tasks with treats, musts with woulds. For example, don’t put off exercise for a webinar – stream it live or replay as you run. Visit a favourite coffee shop and do your online grocery shopping over a yummy snack. I find time blocking really helpful across hectic weeks – 90 minutes focus on writing a blog, 30 minutes on my accounts, all evening spoiling my partner – that way I can see when I can fit in something new, something strategic, something I’m putting off.
Acknowledge the fear
Don’t fight it. Don’t ignore it. Don’t let it rule. Easy words, right? And I’m not saying I’m fearless. Creating change and stretch in your life and career means overcoming fears holding you back. Some will be reasonable and you can manage those risks sensible – such as having a rainy day fund to cover any expenses of changing roles. Some will be more self-perception than reality – other people’s reaction or opinions might bother you. With both, I suggest asking for support from your trusted friends.
In the movie Dead Poets Society, the English teacher John Keating, played by Robin Williams, famously says: “Carpe Diem. Seize the day, boys. Make your lives extraordinary.” That’s what I want for us, extraordinary.
One of things I’m great at doing is helping my coaching clients move from goals to action – empowering you to seize your day. If this b-mail resonates with you, don’t forget you can reach out to me. I offer coaching in a minimum of 3 sessions with a variety of payment plans.
Today is a brand new day, tell me in the comments, what are you going to do to seize your day and be extraordinary? I’d really love to hear!