We've been sold a billion lies. From day one. I hate to say that I have believed these lies my whole life. It's not something I am very proud of but what else am I supposed to believe if I haven't been introduced to any other way of thinking?! What are these lies, you ask?! The ones I have struggled with are these:
1.) Money equals success
2.)We should have the answer to everything
3.) Being right is more important than being compassionate
4.) Follow the American Dream; go to school, get good grades, get into a good college, get a good job, get married, have kids, buy a home, plan for retirement, and maybe go on vacation 2 weeks out of the year if you're lucky.
Some of you are not going to like what I have to say about this stuff. Some might call me a believer in conspiracy. I can't say that I disagree. The older I get the more I am open to new ways of thinking, feeling, and seeing the world. My beliefs are worlds different from what they were when I was 20. Here's where it gets tricky. I live in a world that is run by these lies...these beliefs. I am around it all the time, which means I get sucked into it daily. And I often forget to live by MY definition of success.
The month of May was a mess for me. I made excellent money. I made great contacts for future investments into my business and my schedule is booked solid. Success right!? Wrong. Why...? Because I only saw my kids 6 days this month. Because I missed the soccer games, feeding them healthy foods, engaging with them and supporting the belief in themselves. I missed my nieces birthday party...I missed Mother's Day. I missed my oldest daughter's first All-Star softball game where she got a triple and earned her spot on the team. There is no amount of money that can get those memories back. They're gone. I don't get to do this over again. The crazy part about being a parent is that our children are simply on loan to us. We don't get them forever. Soon my oldest daughter will want to be with her friends all weekend. Hanging with mom will be an afterthought. I am putting in the work to build a strong foundation so she'll still want to hang with me but there is no guarantee. I mess up a lot. Being busy makes me grouchy...and honestly, who wants to hangout with a grouchy person?! Often times I am with my kids but thinking about work. Sometimes I just want to check out and not even think about anything!! Turn it all off...I get why people turn to drugs and alcohol to cope. It helps turn it all off. But I am more of a sweat it out kinda person. Get me to the gym and I'll go balls to the wall.
But here's why I wanted to write about this. What IS your definition of success?! Sure finance and money should be involved. But what about your marriage goals? Parenting goals...what kind of person do you want your kids to remember you as? Spiritual and health goals? It's my belief that success should encompass our overall life, not just how much money is in our pocketbook. If you're interested in finding out mine keep reading. If not, take a moment to think about what YOUR definition of success is.
Here are mine:
1.) Spiritual goals. As I get older I realize we have a choice to believe what we want. And there are societal influences that change the way we choose to believe. A while back it was a no-no to not believe in God. Where as now...well, it seems ridiculous if you do believe in God. My own personal spiritual goals involve God. They never did before... I was one of the anti-people. Not anymore. Spiritually I want to remain grateful, humble and grounded to my roots. Forever evolving and growing in a way that draws me closer to My Father.
2.) Marriage goals. I never believed in marriage before a few years ago. What can I say!? I was a cynical millennial (or on the border of millennial). I had been with the same man for a decade. We had 3 kids and lived together all over the world. He had seen me at my lowest...But I refused to marry him. We were engaged for 7 years. I had said yes but with the intention of never following through with it. Why?! I believed that marriage was a sham. Just a piece of paper that society wanted to keep people contained. I had never seen a happy marriage; it all seemed like a huge lie to me.
Then I met Him...and He humbled me in a way that nothing ever has. He made me see my man for what he was, not what he wasn't. And I realized the gift that marriage was. It is now one of the highest priorities in my life. For me, I aim to provide peace, fun and unity in our marriage. This means we go to a counselor to stay connected. We take trips 2-3 times a year that is just us. And we have fun...whether it's flirting, laughing or reminiscing. I take wife lessons. For real. I have no idea what it means to be a good wife so I have to study what that entails. And I won't stop just because things have gotten better. I will always evolve as a wife, just as our relationship is always evolving.
3.) Parenting goals. This one is tough. Being a parent has been the hardest thing ever. My children are a mirror and reflect everything back to me that I am, and am not. My goal is to raise confident children. To connect to them in a way that they trust themselves, and have a solid foundation to start their dreams. For me it is about connection, confidence and fun. I want them to see the world as an adventure. That they can do anything through building the skill of perseverance and proper repetition. Mistakes are being made by the dozen here...but I always apologize to my kids. They deserve to know that I am flawed and I am not above them. I will continue to make mistakes and I will continue to apologize to them. They humble me...and I want them to know it.
4.) Health goals. I struggle with this one. It has become a lower priority for me as I get busier with business and family. But I still fight for it. Right now I am looking to get lean as I have turned to food to cope many times. I do pilates and yoga for 20-45 minutes a day. I try to walk 10K steps a day and I love to lift weights. Although lifting has been put on the back burner for now (injuries). I also strive to eat live foods every day. Things that the Earth provides for us. Not processed. It isn't always easy but it seems that my body responds very well to living foods. I feel alive when I consume them!
5.) Financial goals. This one is hard to keep in 5th place. Society tells us money equals happiness so that is often where my time and energy gets sucked. I have been working hard to build a reputation in my business and I am only starting to see the results after nearly 2 years. I have to come back to this list often as my priorities get out of whack quickly. Financially I want to continue to build my brand and find the value in what I provide for others. It is important for me to build community around me and help others succeed as well. In terms of a numbers game my goal is to continue to double my income on an annual basis. To pay off all business debt this year and to invest in 1 other form of cash flow income for 2018.
I hope that we can all agree that we are in charge of our own lives. I didn't always believe that. Now I know better. I hope that this can help inspire you to find new ways of thinking. New ways of living...Give you the confidence to go after life and love the one you are living!
Health & hugs,