Posted: July 27, 2011
Top 10 tips for living life your way
It's time to reclaim your personal powerJohn Heckers
Too many people have given away their personal and spiritual power. If the Great Recession has done anything good, it has hit people upside the head with a cosmic 2 X 4 and helped them to re-evaluate where they're going and what they're doing in life, returning their personal power to them. Here are some ways to begin to reclaim who you are and become "more you" now.
1). Find your voice. Too many people tiptoe around, afraid to speak the deepest desires of their hearts, because the boss or society might not like it. To heck with the boss or society! Speak up. Let your voice be heard. (Civilly, of course.)
2). Stop worrying. There is very little you can do these days to absolutely insure that you're not going to be in the next wave of layoffs or the next victim of some sort of ubiquitous corporate greed. So forget about it! There is a certain freedom that comes with being out of control of the situation. Control is an illusion anyway. So why worry? Let go.
3). Who cares what the Joneses think? Too many people work jobs for show, gain possessions for show, or behave in ways they hate for show. Whose life is it, anyway? At the end, you are the one who will have lived and died, not the Joneses. Ignore their opinions of you (as well as those of society as a whole). So long as what you do is not illegal, unethical or immoral, do what you will. There is an old quote I love, "If you're going to skate on thin ice, you might as well dance!" Dance away!
4). (Expletive) your "lifestyle." I see people every day who are giving up their dreams to maintain a "lifestyle." By that they mean that they are selling themselves out for stuff. Stuff the stuff! Beyond a certain amount, "stuff" weighs you down. Most Americans have become enslaved to their material possessions. Money and material possessions are fine servants, but terrible masters.
5). Get your priorities straight. In most cases, if you're going to a job you hate every day, your priorities are messed up. You're, at that point, a slave and nothing more. Your freedom and happiness are more important than virtually any reason for hating your job every single day of your life.
6). Do what you are. If you're a pacifist, you probably shouldn't be working at Lockheed Martin. Does your work life reflect the person inside? Is your work allowing you to express your deepest values? If not, do something that does reflect the real you, and watch how you change.
7). Do your relationships support the real you? Now might also be a good time to re-evaluate your relationships. If you are not able to be "you" in your marriage, your friendships, or your work relationships, change something. Have a talk. Get counseling. In some cases, get rid of the relationship. The people around you should allow you to be you. If that isn't the case, you're not in the right relationships.
8). Find your life purpose. You are here for a reason. There can be no greater priority than finding out what that life purpose is and doing it. It is larger than "making money." It is even larger than "taking care of family." You are here to make a difference to humanity by serving humanity. If you're not doing that, in some very real way, your life does not have the meaning it was meant to have, and you will never be deeply and fully engaged.
9). Begin. There is quote, usually incorrectly attributed to Goethe, that goes, "Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now." Whoever actually said it, it is true. If you begin something wonderful, all sorts of people and circumstances will come to your aid. Get started!
10). Ignore the naysayers. Heinlein quipped that, when beginning a venture, we should solemnly listen to all of the experts on why something couldn't be done...then go do it. Great advice. Prepare. Be wise in your preparations. But don't let someone derail your dreams.
Do what you are. Live and work your values. Have relationships that support you. And sing the song you were meant to sing. These things can be scary...and exhilarating. Stop being afraid and move it!
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John Heckers, MA, CPC, BCPC was an Executive, Relationships, Life and Spiritual Coach in Denver with 30 years of experience helping people with their lives, relationships and careers.