Like any other human begin, this year I’ve failed. Because of my continued commitment to transparency, I want to share my top 3 failures with the entire Upside family
I just came back from hosting a 2-day, invitation-only Get Your Year in Gear: Influence Amplified retreat in Phoenix where there were as many tears shed as there were belly laughs.
Why? Because stepping into being a courageous, vulnerable leader takes just that – courage.
The word “courage” comes from the Latin word “cor” meaning from the heart – and the earliest definitions meant to “speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart”.
After facilitating my Influence Amplified retreat, I flew from Phoenix into San Jose to attend the 7th annual invitation-only, Leaders for Conscious Entrepreneurship retreat — where I got to mastermind with some of the most forward-thinking and heart-centered individuals in my industry.
We spent as much time if not more talking about what’s not working – and what to do about it to affect change vs. sitting around and singing each other’s praises.
Both events included deep connection, collaboration, and a bit of a reality check that included stretching growth edges which is one of the reasons I’m sharing where I’ve failed in this week’s Upside Thought.
You’ve probably heard me say I learn more from my failures than my successes.
And, when I work with private coaching clients who have a project turn out differently than expected, I always ask them what they learned from the experience – and what they would do differently.
It’s humbling to review my list of failures this year as they were many.
Because of my continued commitment to transparency, I want to share my top 3 failures with the entire Upside family – partners, clients, colleagues, as well as our staff and my advisory board.
Here’s a toast to my top 3 failures of 2017 – and the lessons they brought with them.
#1. I failed at living out my own priorities……
…….and spent more time focused on others at my own expense.
Upside Thinking, Inc. has been growing in leaps and bounds which means taking care of myself must be a top priority.
Why? Because an organization is only as healthy as its leader.
How I run the business serves as a model for the people I work with and who work with me.
As a transformational leader who has family responsibilities from aging parents on both sides as well as the unique responsibilities of running a business and serving the individual needs of my clients, I spend most days putting others first.
My heart virtues are mercy, justice, and protection – and I care deeply about people.
While I share how “just because you can, doesn’t mean you should” doesn’t mean I always live that out.
Yes, I took vacations this year, and went to a silent retreat house for a week – and had more than one technology-fast, however, my daily routine became off-balance as changed my morning routine to include more work and little or no movement.
If I don’t make my health the #1 priority, I will be of no good to those I am called to serve.
I recognize that what is best for me to live out my big mission and calling is for me to take care of me first.
This lesson has been a BIG one.
You are called to live out your priorities, not someone else’s and that means making you your #1 priority.
#2. I failed at being fully present……
…..and became too future-focused.
Nobel prize-winning scientist Daniel Kahnmann did research that shows that you experience 20,000 individual moments a day.
Every moment matters – and they pass so quickly.
If I spend too much time thinking about what comes next, I miss out on living in the here and now.
I miss out on the gift of the present moment.
And, this leads to me being distracted and not giving my full attention to the people who matter most in my life.
There will always be emails to attend to and work to do – and there will not always be those special moments where you get to be one-on-one, face-to-face connected to someone you love.
The best way to show others love is to be present and give them the gift of your time.
As I reflected on how much time I spent this year planning for what’s next, I remember how I would rush in to see my grandmother when I was visiting her in the nursing home – and rush out to the next appointment.
After she passed away, I realized I would never get another opportunity to be fully present with her.
Somehow this lesson was one that I had to re-learn this year – and fortunately, not through loss.
The magic happens in the present moment and if you spend too much time looking for what is to come and creating magic there, you’ll miss it unfold right before your eyes.
#3. I failed to take a stand for my own truth…..
…….and was swayed by wanting to be the nice girl.
As I’ve been delving into the value of vulnerability in leadership, I’ve come to realize that comfort doesn’t change the world.
Vulnerability changes everything.
Sometimes my decisions make other people unhappy – and while I don’t set out to make others unhappy, I realize that being uncomfortable is what will allow for the greatest growth in life.
Your comfort zone can be paralyzing and only allows you to live life at a 6 or 7 – not a 10.
In wanting to be “nice”, I’ve gone back on decisions this year that I knew were the best for all parties involved – including myself.
When I work with a client, I take a stand for their greatness, and somehow along the way this year, I stopped taking a stand for my own.
Over the past several months, I began examining when I step into an unhealthy relationship pattern (more vulnerability in leadership research) and what the consequences are to my own well-being.
Growing up, I learned how to be the good girl to keep the peace – the one who says all of the “right” things – which meant never speaking my mind fully.
Every time I chose to speak up, I got in trouble and could feel the disapproval of my family and friends.
When you do that over time, you become good at keeping your mouth shut and stuffing your emotions inside.
While it’s not healthy, it keeps your nice girl image alive and well.
Looking back, I realize that this has done me more harm than good and when I realized I was re-engaging this way ½ way through the year, I made an abrupt 180-degree turn and ran in the other direction.
Taking a stand for my own truth has not been easy.
Sometimes being with your own truth is messy, uncomfortable, and painful.
Yet, in the end it’s freeing.
And, I was never meant to be the nice girl.
I was meant to be a world-changer – a disrupter – and so were you.
The Upside Challenge of the week is to examine your 2017 – and where you came short this year. What have you learned from your failures? What will you do differently as you move into 2018?
The world needs you and your brilliance.