Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A Snack Pack of Life Lessons, Get 'Em While They're Hot!

Lately I am uncovering nuggets of inspiration and wisdom just about everywhere. They all could probably warrant their own blog post. But until I find a surplus of Shelleys hanging around, I'm going to share these nuggets as such, quick bites best enjoyed warm. So, rather than lose track of all these goodies, I'm serving you up a three-piece, snack pack style. Holla.

1. Your comfort zone is comfy. Which means it could have holes in it just like your other favorite comfy things (blankies, sweats, pj's, you get the drift).

I've trained four new clients recently. All four of them had never done a CrossFit-style workout in their life. They put their trust in me to try something new. This, is gettin' out of your comfort zone defined and personified. The lesson? If we focus on what we've always done, where we're always been, the places we know, the experiences that are familiar, hell the food we've always eaten or the friggin' colors we've always worn, we will be who we've always been. And most of us aren't satisfied with that. Most of us want to evolve. I'm talkin' next level shit.

Staying in our comfort zone means creating a one-dimensional version of our life. It means choosing to make our world smaller and confining rather than limitless and abundant. As Socrates said about life, the secret is to focus all of our energy not on fighting the past, but on building the new. If you want to change something about your life, quit beating yourself up about the past, quit staying committed to what feels comfortable and go do something the old you wouldn't normally do. And you know what, you'll inspire someone in the process. I guarantee it. All four of those "new clients" of mine, they absolutely showed me the best of the human spirit.

2. Sometimes you need to force yourself in to the present. Hey that sounds pretty counterintuitive, doesn't it? Yep. It sure does.

Here's the deal, sometimes our minds are a runaway train. Just like the one Soul Asylum sang about, this runaway train ain't a good thing and it ain't pretty. I hear it wears flannel and hasn't washed its hair in weeks. That said, sometimes you just need to slap yourself in to the HERE and NOW and quit thinking about the bills you need to pay, the laundry you didn't fold, the deadline breathing down your neck... you need to just shut that damn to do list up and bring yourself back to this fact: you are breathing, you are alive, and nothing is anywhere near as important as it seems.

Last week I had a really stressful couple of days that kept piling up on each other. Finances, emotions, business, you name it, I was stressing. Then I watched the movie Life of Pi. Boom. Reset button. Engaging with something so beautiful and captivating as that film forced me in to the present and reminded me to chill the eff out. After all, I'm not stranded at sea on a life boat with a tiger. Enough said. When you find yourself tail spinning I know it can take everything in your power to switch gears and quit focusing on whatever it is that seems like it needs all of your attention at that moment, but I guarantee you if you can find the wherewithal to do so, you will thank yourself. And you will reapproach that to do list like a new woman. Or man. Or tiger. 

3. The choice to be in the service of another human being and really be there for them, can change their entire life.

During the recent stress fest I mentioned above, a relative stranger (my "tax guy" at H&R block) took the time to ease my mind not just about my taxes, but about my choices in life (to go out on my own as an entreprenuer) and my financial future ("you're in start-up mode, don't worry"). He kept me calm. He's continuing to fight for money I'm owed. He did it with a sense of humor, he stayed up late to work on it, he emailed me to reassure me and he did it with such grace.Then he told me he felt like he could talk to me forever and I seemed like the daughter he never had. Not gonna lie, I pretty much started crying in his cube.

This man changed my world that day and taught me a lesson in customer service humanity. Being in service of others - whether it's your job, a volunteer opportunity, your family or friends - is different than being there to do what you're "supposed to." One is an obligation the other is a choice and an act of grace. I've got my work cut out for me, but thanks to Mr. McLemore from H&R Block for setting such a fine example.

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