Private victories precede public victories. You can't invert that process any more than you can harvest a crop before you plant it.
A common mistake that we make when we are facing a difficulty is to allow the incident or event to distort our perception of our life. Instead of making conscious efforts to focus on what is going well in our life while we strive to overcome a difficulty, we feed into self-defeating thoughts and negative emotions which hamper our ability to gain the clarity of focus necessary to move forward. We have to "begin from within" if we desire to achieve public wins.
The scripture state, “Guard your heart above all else for it determines the course of your life. (Proverbs 4:23) Biblical, the heart is the center of our being consisting of our intellect, emotions and human will. The heart of your thought life influences what you feel. Your feelings influence how you respond to circumstances in life. Your response to experiences determines their impact on your life. Recognizing the pattern of your thoughts, emotions and behaviors and making a decision to manage them in a manner that helps you fulfill your purpose and experience greater meaning in life fuels your hope, faith and “can-do” attitude. As you manage your inner-life it becomes easier to “tune-out” to “tune-into” the wisdom of your inner guide and embrace the rhythm of your life in such a way that strengthens you to live on purpose with great delight.
Moving with the Rhythm of Your Life
Pain is physical, suffering is mental. Suffering is due entirely to clinging or resisting. It is a sign of our unwillingness to move, to flow with life.
In his book A Wise Heart, Jack Kornfield writes, “Instead of holding tightly to “how it [the situation] should be” – look at the situation from the perspective “what’s the best way to move forward from here.” Kornfield believes, “Compassionate awareness recognizes behavioral tendencies which do not serve your best self and with this acknowledgement also comes a declaration that you can recognize them for what they represent but you’re moving on.” He writes, “When we do not cling to a negative thought, emotions or behavior, they lose their hold on us.”
The wisdom of “moving with the rhythm of my life” has been a lesson that I have had to learn and relearn throughout the course of my life. In some situations, such as growing older, it’s been easier to accept. I embrace aging with an attitude of gratitude. My mother died at the tender age of forty-four, so I’m grateful to be living out the beginning of my 50’s. When I moved back to my hometown of Columbia, SC in 2008, I was confident that I would be able to get hired as a manager in the Hospitality industry. After all, I had 20+ years of award-winning experience. That didn’t seem to matter. I wasn’t able to get one management job interview. Instead, I had to take on two hourly jobs to get afford the first apartment I moved in.
Doubting Our Doubts
Action is a great restorer and builder of confidence. Inaction is not only the result, but the cause, of fear. Perhaps the action you take will be successful; perhaps different action or adjustments will have to follow. But any action is better than no action at all.
~Norman Vincent Peale~
When I came to Columbia, I had the seed of a business idea that I believed in my heart would help me, help others help themselves. My life has been transformed on numerous occasions by the DRIVE5Advantage ™. Yet, I wasn’t quick to walk in the promptings of my inner-wisdom. It took a return to Wilmington, NC in 2011, the completion of another semester of school at Cape Fear Community College for me to have experiences that provided me with tangible proof as to how the idea could impact the lives of people. On a hunch, I created a pamphlet of the methodology and shared it with students at the college. The positive and constructive feedback I received from potential users of the pamphlet became my clarion call for action.
I stopped resisting “my truth” and started to accept that this prompting from within came as a result of my inner-wisdom “knowing” the roadblocks I would face attempting to return to what I had been doing instead of “going with the flow of enlarging my life”. This doesn’t mean that I don’t have days in which I experience doubt and uncertainty about this new path. I’ve just finally accepted that I’ve got to enlarge my faith by believing that this idea will help me better my life and be the blessing in the lives of others that I have prayed and hoped for since I was eight years old.
The Power of Follow Through Begins from Within
Are you resisting or embracing the rhythm of your life? Are you focusing on what is going well in your life and using your talents to move to the next level, or are you focusing on the problems in your life and allowing them to dominate your mental and emotional energy resulting in you feeling physically drained?
Napoleon Hill wrote, “The starting point of all achievement is desire. Weak desires bring weak results, just as a small amount of fire makes a small amount of heat. If you find yourself lacking in persistence, this weakness may be remedied by building a stronger fire under your desires.” You may have the talent of a genius but if you are not able to remain committed to a path of purpose fueled by a daily determination to win, you’re wasting your time, energies and talent. Mary Kay Ashe stated, “Those people blessed with the most talents don’t necessary outperform everyone else. It’s the people with follow-through who excel.”
It’s not enough to know what needs to be done, without follow-through all you have are good intentions. The habit of follow-through is developed through self-discipline and concentrated focus towards a specific outcome. Follow-through is what makes “it” happen and indicates that you’re “In It to Win It.” Much of what you want to experience in life requires tenacity to make it happen. Tenacity is fueled by your level of desire to achieve a specific goal. Lofty goals can only be achieved by maintaining the required staying power to overcome roadblocks to your success.
Winning from within requires that you achieve private victories over self-defeating thoughts, negative emotions and counter-productive behaviors. Managing what gets your attention, tuning out the noise of the world so that you can tune into the wisdom of your inner guide, and embracing the flow of your life empowers you to take a proactive approach towards guarding your heart, navigating your way forward and enjoying your everyday life.
It’s Your Move ~