Be smarter than the elephant: don’t limit yourself

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image from thoughtsforaday.com

When circus folk are training a small baby elephant, they tie a strong rope around their feet and attach the rope to a secure pole. Of course the baby elephants try to walk away and to break free. They’re small though. While they push and pull and try with all their might, they simply aren’t strong enough to break away.

The young elephant tries again and again, day after day. The babies fight for a while but eventually, they completely stop trying to break free. Eventually, they stop resisting. Eventually they give up on believing they can break free. This is when the trainers know they are ready. From then on, the elephant will associate that rope around their feet as something they aren’t strong enough to break free from.
Even as powerful adults, the elephant still makes that association. Though it could easily break free physically, it’s the elephant’s mind that convinces it otherwise.
The elephant does not realize how powerful it is. The limitations brought on by their past frame their beliefs as adults and therefore they never break free.
How about you? Is there something in your past that you allow to be true for you today even though you are stronger? Maybe you’ve grown since the last time you tried. In fact, maybe all of that struggle has brought you to the point today where you’re finally strong enough, once and for all, to break free.

 

We’re on each other’s team

I don’t iron y’all.

My best effort is trying to remove things promptly from the dryer.

Chris was planning to do this when he gets home.

But tomorrow is a big day for him work-wise. And he’ll be gone 5-9 at least. He probably won’t sleep tonight.

So, I thought, self, how could you help him out?

In the past it wouldn’t probably have occurred to me to come at it from that angle. I probably would’ve thought more about how busy I am. How his extra business has made me also extra busy.

But I’m thankful that I’m now of the team frame of mind. As Lorde says,

“We’re on each other’s team.”

Last year when I did my first 90 day goal focus improving my marriage was one of those goals.

One thing a day for Chris was on the list. These days I don’t always do it, but I think about it most days. 😂

But I want the whole fairy tale, not just the beginning of Cinderella.

I’m SO excited that a few ladies in my planning/goal group are setting marriage as one of their goals. That makes me happppy! A good marriage takes work, intention and perspective! It’s one of the MOST important relationships we have yet it often gets put on the back burner.

But what if we were a team?! Working toward a preferred future?! Like, wo.

Others ladies have business, faith, fitness, family, nutrition and other goals for the next 90 days.

It’s going to be awesome. So much awesome.

Monday Motivational: Define success

Happy Monday morning everyone! To slightly edit the words of my the Elf that accurately portrayed my personality,

mondays

I know that’s crazy. But it’s true. Now, there’s something even more special about the first Monday of the month. The fresh, blank and free planner page! Sigh.

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That being said, yesterday I was reflecting on the definition of success. You know, for fun. I decided it’s just too individual. In large part that’s because we all have different goals. Even if we just look at fitness, success means different things to different folks. Losing 10 pounds, hitting a new personal heavy lifting record, improving pace or distance with running are some examples.

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So, if hypothesising on success is just too big of a question, the good news is there is a smaller way we can contemplate and achieve success. It’s the way our most successful folks get there in life.

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Spin the life wheel. Or just pick out where you’re looking for success!

Step 1: Pick the area in life you’re most interested right now in improving. That you’re most in need of a win, of finding success. Several years ago, for me, that was fitness.

Step 2: Decide what success looks like for that area. When I first began to see momentum in my fitness life I decided a certain number on the scale was my goal post. That would mean I had been successful. (Side rant: Yes, non-scale victories are important and the scale is just a number, but it’s also a tangible way to get started with goal setting. Plus, numbers = how the doctor definies health, so we can’t get too high and mighty against the scale.) I had about 30 pounds to lose in order to hit that goal. Okay, now we have a definition for success.

Step 3: Figure out what one or two things you need to do every day and/or every week in order to hit that goal. For me, that was working out each day and eating healthy. After good research I decided that four months of doing those two things every day and I would probably hit my goals. This part is important. Without a deadline goals are just wishes. Deadlines force us to get serious and even give us a little beginning motivation.

Step 4: Focus until you finish. One problem we often have when trying to achieve success is we try to do too many things at once. Or we focus on too many areas in life. Then we take the focus off the goal. If we add then we add to our anxiety, to our to do list and, worst of all, to our guilt when we don’t achieve all these goals we set for ourselves. That’s no bueno. Instead, give yourself permission to focus on one thing at a time. Put your effort into it, accomplish it and then repeat the whole process.

Here are some other examples to get the brain ticking.

  • Step 1: Debt free.
  • Step 2: Become debt free.
  • Step 3: Review/discuss/stick to budget each week & Pay down debt each week with paycheck.
  • Step 4: Establish timeline to when debt will be gone, halt things that are distractions until then (ie. no more concerts until debt is gone!).

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  • Step 1: Peaceful home.
  • Step 2: Decluttered, clean and orderly.
  • Step 3: 30 minutes grind cleaning (dishes, picking up, basics), 30 minutes deep cleaning or decor, reset at the end of the day.
  • Step 4: This one is ongoing for me now!

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  • Step 1: Write a book.
  • Step 2: Published author whose content is helping people.
  • Step 3: Write 1,000 words a day. Once writing is complete, edit 1 chapter a day. 1 / week research publishing / contacts.
  • Step 4: Devote 1 hour a day until fully complete.

The secret is once you focus on one thing, you might find it becomes automatic. That’s how you build a habit. My cleaning example is evidence of this. I had to focus for a while on doing that. It took a lot of willpower, who loves cleaning? But now it’s on repeat. I know those are the things that define my success as a homemaker (newsflash, if you have a home, you’re a homemaker). So now I can do that pretty automatically and I consider my home to be generally successful. Because of that, I can choose a different area that I want to be successful in. Here lately, it’s writing a book! That’s the area of growth I’m seeking success in. My previous goal setting, which established health habits, is what will allows me to be successful as I move on to this new venture. Because my health and home are in order, I can move on to new things with confidence. This entire process is actually what my book is all about!

  • So, what area is most important to you right now?
  • What does success look like?
  • What are the actions you can take to achieve that success?
  • What’s the timeline?
  • How can you stay focussed until you achieve that definition of success?

 

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