The Five Million Dollar Question
In your busy, busy world, just take a moment to consider what you'd do with five million dollars if it was given to you right now. This very minute, no strings, no obligations, all yours to do whatever you wished. (And yes, there is a serious purpose to this fun activity.)
What would you do (after picking yourself off the floor, posting on Facebook, guzzling champagne etc) with it? Take a moment to jot down the first things that come to mind – have fun imagining the end of many of those ‘shoulds’ and ‘if onlys’.
Now, as you look at that list, how much of that relates to your current life, both personal and business aspects?
Here’s the crunch, that catch you were waiting for: that list represents what is most important to you, your values in other words. You will NEVER be content in your life until you honour those values. Repeat: you will NEVER BE CONTENT until you honour those values. Imagine lying on your deathbed bitterly regretting not doing X because you had felt you ‘should’ do Y, and so did what ‘everyone’ said was ‘the right thing’ for you.
Sometimes we already have aspects of what we truly desire in our lives, but don’t see or appreciate it, whether through stress, self-worth, or because it’s in a different form to what we expected. For example, I moved from Indooroopilly (close to the city) out to Redcliffe (by the sea but often 50 minutes’ drive). I moved under protest as I wanted to still be close to friends, theatre, art galleries, favourite restaurants, and Brisbane Forest Park bushwalks. I made my partner promise we’d both move back into Brisbane in 6 months’ time, and reminded him, often.
Early one morning I was filling in time waiting for a meeting at Wellington Point, watching people walk along the beach, enjoying the sun and fresh air. I caught myself thinking, “Oh, what a wonderful way to start the working day.” Whack! It hit me. I could do exactly the same thing every day myself, at Redcliffe, I’d just had the blinkers on out of stubbornness. The silly thing was, I’d always intended to live by the sea “when I was successful”. I’d actually received what I’d asked for, without having to fulfil the extra condition. Or perhaps I had, without owning it, because I’d bought into someone else’s idea of “successful”. It’s so important to be crystal clear on what “success” really means to you, otherwise, you’ll miss it, and be forever seeking and feeling unfulfilled.
So, have another look at your list, and start finding as many ways, small as well as significant, that you can start ‘having it all’ now. Ensure you include savings and investments, as blowing the lot in a spending frenzy is a waste, and that’s exactly what you’ll do if you don’t already value and nurture your money. Notice where business featured, if at all. Find ways to make adjustments there too, setting yourself up for success with systems for example, weekends completely away from work issues, or sack difficult clients, freeing up space and energy to attract those you love working with. Find your fun factor at work and home, especially if your business office is in your home.
Small changes in the right direction are all some areas of your life might need. Others will need a full overhaul, but it doesn’t need to be all done today. One step at a time. Your life is too short not to at least start. As you include more and more of your ideal average day into your current life, notice the difference it makes to how you feel, about yourself and your relationships, and how fun builds more fun, more abundance.
If you get stuck implementing these ideas, ask yourself why. Is it because you’re too busy caring for everyone else? Perhaps deep inside you don’t feel you deserve happiness or to live your ideal life? Or do you think you have the rest of your life to start enjoying it? Yes, you do, but exactly how much time do you really have? You just don’t know. Tomorrow could be D Day for you. (Touch wood not.)
The inspiration for this blog came from hearing an ad for Gold Lotto, asking whether I’d go on safari in Africa, cruise down the Nile River in Egypt or go to The Moulin Rouge in Paris if I won. I’ve done all three, without winning the lotto, or being rich. It was because doing those things was high in my values, I made it happen. I didn’t want to wait until I was too old to enjoy travelling, or get ill and not go at all, like my Grandparents.
It doesn’t matter if travel isn’t your thing, it only matters that you are living your life your way now, finding as many ways as possible to live your ideal average day, now.
Remember, you don’t have to make changes alone, especially if you’re struggling. Just ask me for ideas and tips on how to change more easily, clearing your head trash out of the way, and start really living, rather than existing your life.