If there’s one thing that we all have in common, it’s this: we all need a strong foundation from which to launch our dreams, goals and lives.
This is true of everyone that I coach because it’s true of all of us.
What I’ve discovered is that every goal, every career transition and every life change becomes easier when we have solid ground under our feet. When our foundation is strong, we can accomplish more. We can create more, connect more and grow more.
What’s truly revolutionary is that we are the ones who can create that solid ground for ourselves.
Of course, a strong and solid base– like any upgrade in our lives– doesn’t get built in a day. It’s an ongoing practice. We create it every day, over time.
We create it with the habits that make us resilient, the small practices that feed our spirit, the way we nourish our bodies and our minds. Our everyday practices can help to build us up, or they can be the things that stand in our way.
The old adage “it’s the little things that matter most” is really true here. Every day we’re building (or eroding) the foundation on which stand.
With all the volatility “out there,” it feels more important than ever to be building a strong base in our own lives.
Here’s a template for strengthening your base, day by day. Please do try this at home. And at work.
Start fresh by clearing out what’s not working. This might happen over time if there’s a lot that’s not working right now—or it might be a matter of making a few simple tweaks. All that matters is that you figure out what needs to be cleared out or renegotiated and have the courage to begin. Clearing out physical clutter can be a great metaphor to get you thinking along these lines. Then you can tackle schedules, situations, commitments, attitudes, you name it.
Reprioritize how you’re spending your time. We often think that we don’t have time to invest in (or treat) ourselves, or even just to BE. You do. And whether you’re trying to create a more sustainable and balanced work life or wanting to make bigger, faster progress on a dream, owning this will make a difference. The truth is, it’s rarely a lack of time; it’s almost always about what we’re spending it on. We have 24 hours every day and we need to make (sometimes challenging) choices about how we use them.
Reprioritize where your energy is going. Like time, your personal energy is finite and precious. Sure, you might make a little more by fueling yourself wisely, but it’s not endless. As with time, you are in charge of what you spend energy on and how you show up. Wherever possible, consider directing your energy towards the activities, people, situations and mindsets that fuel, not drain, you.
Raise or lower your standards. Often, it pays to ratchet up your standards in service of creating the changes that you’re craving in your personal and work lives. Sometimes you do need to reach higher, expect more and dream bigger. Yet sometimes, what’s called for—what will propel you forward—is to drop those standards down a notch. This is especially true for the perfectionistas out there (hi, I see you!). Adjust according to your own situation.
Listen to what you’re telling yourself. People are natural storytellers. It’s how we all make sense of our experience and how we share that. We are also always acting out of our stories. Slowing down enough to hear, examine and even challenge what we’re thinking or what we believe about a situation is a transformative practice for putting solid ground under your feet.
Build rituals and routines. The power of a morning routine is that it puts a foundation under the day. This is true for all of the small rituals, habits and routines that we all engage in every day. In fact, this is the cornerstone of having real balance in your life: choosing small acts that nourish you. It’s just as powerful as a tool for making big life or career changes. Think: daily or weekly actions that further your goals.
Own what is true for you. Spend the time to get to know yourself a bit better. Explore– and embrace– your strengths, values and priorities. Understand what you need and be honest about that. Embrace the priorities that matter most to you. Allow your inner introvert or extrovert to shine. Get very clear about who you are and what it is that you want. Sure, this requires work, but it also streamlines your decision-making and creates more alignment in your life and work.
What happens when you pay attention and take inspired, consistent action to put a healthy foundation under everything you do? Things start to shift and change.
Your well-being, your goals, your growth move into a place of higher priority.
You find yourself telling the truth about your experience instead of holding back.
You stand more solidly on your own ground, hearing– and using– your own voice.
You evolve into a more confident, connected version of yourself.
Imagine what might be possible from that place.
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