But come the end of February, 90% of people will have already lapsed back into the same old habits and patterns that their more conscious selves were hoping (for real this time!) to transcend.
The gurus will tell you that changing your life in a big way requires changing your habits at the nitty-gritty level; that many small repetitive actions add up to something BIG. (And, having once crossed the continental United States on foot one step at a time, I’m inclined to agree.)
But what they DON’T tell you?
Is that very few people succeed in changing their habits...
... Without ALSO undergoing some kind of shift in their identity.
In other words, withoutchanging the story you tell yourself about who you truly are.
Otherwise, you’re just little old you venturing onto a new and foreign playground, feeling like you don’t belong.
And when you’re already feeling like an impostor?
All it takes is one shove from a bully (whether outside or within you) before your eyes well up with tears -- and the overwhelming temptation is to retreat to your smaller sandbox, where people know you, where it’s safe.
So here’s the secret:
Changing who you are into who you want to become?
Requires recognizinghints of that person in your past actions and experiences.
I.e. identifying the supporting evidence that, on some level, you already exist as that person.
Now, the process you're about to learn can apply to ANY major change you wish to make in ANY area of your life.
But let’s say, for example, that THIS is the year you decide you want to develop as a "leader" -- and you see great communication and masterful storytelling as a path to that.
You know you have to change your habits; but in order to sustain that kind of foundational pattern-shift?
The REAL question you need to ask yourself is:
Who is the person who would naturally, automatically, do the kinds of things you want to get yourself to do?
For the sake of this thought experiment, let’s think of this person as:
"The Authentic Leader Who Inspires and Influences People with Great Communication."
In terms of who this person is, we might agree that (s)he:
Is not content to look, sound, and act just like everybody else
Is not interested in sleepwalking through life in a formulaic or pre-determined way
Is not afraid to examine their own inner landscape of dreams, beliefs and motivations (or at least, they don’t let fear prevent them from doing so)
Risks showing up as their whole multidimensional self, rather than imitating who they think they should be in pursuit of others’ approval
Is sincerely invested in their own personal growth and development
Is sincerely interested in learning from and mentoring other human beings
Seeks out new experiences that push them outside their comfort zone
Seeks to help other people achieve freedom from their fears and limitations
Seeks to help other people become the best versions of themselves
Seeks to collaborate with others to create new things, solutions and opportunities
Dissolves confusion, conflict, and resistance by offering the right words in a timely and insightful way
Inspires others to action with said timely and insightful words
Now, the question is:
When (and where) in your life have you already experienced yourself as this kind of person?
Take a minute to consider or jot down moments when you've experienced yourself in these ways -- even if they seem relatively microscopic!
You’ve asked yourself, “do I agree with what everyone else is saying and doing?"
You’ve paused to consider, “what do I REALLY believe/ fear/ cherish/ want to create?”
You’ve risked being yourself, when it would have been easier to blend in or hide
You’ve sought out a new experience for the sake of personal challenge and expansion
You’ve prioritized growth and development over what’s easy and convenient
You've shared your hard-earned wisdom with someone else when they needed it
You’ve helped someone else see a challenge or opportunity in a new light
Your words have connected with someone in a meaningful way
Your words have impacted someone else’s understanding of what options are available to them
Your words have inspired someone to feel or act differently than they might have otherwise
If you can think of ANY times in your past when ANY of these things have been true for you…
Congratulations -- you already are the kind of person who can become an extremely powerful, authentic and inspiring leader vis-a-vis storytelling.