About five years ago, I bought a book The Big Leap, which was recommended to me by an online coach I was following at the time.
And this morning, just as I was pondering, journaling, writing out goals, and scrolling Facebook and Twitter to open my mind – because SPACE is the number one prerequisite for me to get my head around Life – I found myself again in doubt over the age old question:
To plan or not to plan?
I had just unsubscribed from the third ecourse on planning, in three weeks. It was becoming clear to me that although I like the idea of achieving my goals and dreams, and I also like notebooks and planning tools (in theory!), I had never actually gotten any results in any area of my life, because I had been consciously working towards them using actionable goals.
I’m someone who gets an urge to do something, and then I do it.
Even if it means cleaning out the basement on a Saturday night.
And then the next day I do my new daily planning-of-shame:
“Today I am going to be a good girl and really do what I was set out to do. Instead of letting myself willingly, be lured into dark basements.”
So this morning, with an empty calendar for the upcoming week but looking back on four highly satisfying social appointments in the last 36 hours – three of them last minute invitations – I wondered:
“What do I really want?”
The most important questions are whether I want a structured approach working on my business. And if I want to plan my social life in advance.
To make it worse the two are related:
If I block time for social life, I can no longer afford a slow start on my work days for example for AM cuddling with stay-over cat K. Nor can I play with my notebooks if I know I have to quit working at 5 PM.
And if I map out my business activities each day, I can’t write spontaneous blog posts like this one.
I lost my entire yoga business working up to 55 hours a week (including writing for this account) and I spent them largely on marketing, which is supposed to be what generates money.
I was highly “visible”, as they call it.
I wrote blogs, created programs, made yoga videos.
Yet look what happened there!
All the doing, prevented me from seeing my heart wasn’t in it.
That teaching yoga was just a job, and that the only reason I was holding on to it, was because teaching yoga had bought me time to write.
I happened to like sales and marketing.
But liking sales and marketing, and longing for my yoga business to keep supporting my writing, had clouded my vision and had kept me stuck trying to make it all work.
So naturally, every time I find myself wanting to plan and schedule, how to run my current coaching and writing business, the whole grinding, pushing and hustling, is eerily familiar!
It’s the same attitude that made me drag on my yoga studio, years after it stopped being the carefree, fun, prosperous business it used to be.
As much as I endorse the idea of a 40 hour mapped out workweek, AND doing daily yoga, in order to whip my body and my business into the shape I want it to be:
The painful lessons of my yoga studio should not be ignored.
Daily activities to support your dreams, is not how life works.
True goals and dreams need to be connected to every day, in their purest form.
Not in their translated action steps.
So that they can be felt as either true or “no longer true”.
And as you’re reading them, you will feel what activities, what messages from the Universe, are associated with those goals TODAY.
Not a prefab, or recommended action step somebody else said was best practice. Or an earlier version of you, said was the best solution.
That’s like reheating yesterday’s meal.
Instead feel into your dreams, and look what pops up in your heart as something you want to do. Something as appealing as a marshmallow.
A totally unrelated, unexpected, marshmallow, that will look extremely appealing, and you will immediately feel inspired to eat it/ do that appealing activity.
Connect to your dreams, and let every day bring its own marshmallows
Automated activities, which are supposedly tied to dreams, lack this moment of contemplation on the source. On the reason you re doing it in the first place.
And automated or recommended activities also lack reflection, if they are your personal (God given!) way to do it.
I heard a story recently about entrepreneurs being encouraged to start making sales calls. So for me, as a coach selling one-on-one time, that would mean calling people from my network, and tell them about my new business, and what I can do for them.
Now, what exactly is my dream?
My dream is that I want to connect with people.
After having lived largely in my inner-world, being a writer for 13 years and a yoga teacher for 15, I want to have real conversations, and inspire and elevate both myself as well as those around me.
I m convinced these things happen in conjunction.
It’s an energy, a vibration, a place where you don’t think about problems, or to-do lists, or daily activities, baby steps towards your dreams (!!)
but you get into the energy of where you want to go.
Who you want to be.
Where you’re gonna LEAP.
Although I have no idea how the writer of that book The Big Leap interpreted his leap, I do remember one thing:
Him pointing out that hopping, is a very inefficient and even damaging form of moving forward.
Leaping, on the other hand, may seem scarier, but it’s much more efficient. And as I recall, according to the author it’s actually the only way to get somewhere, period.
The key element to me is that Leaping is what you should be doing in your mind every day. You should be jumping forward to the future, to your vision and to the person that you are, then.
The reason I seem to be anti-habit and pro going on the fly, is that to me planned daily habits are the equivalent to hopping:
They’re inefficient and even dangerous.
Making sales calls is like hopping:
A waste of resources.
Firstly you re wasting energy by overcoming your own resistance to making sales calls.
The second reason it’s wasted is because sales calls are obviously not your personal aligned way to find new clients, or you d already be doing them!
The WAY you do business, find the man of your dreams, or create the body you want, should always feel just as exciting as the dream itself.
If you tune in to your dreams, and the same action step (Make a sales call!) comes through as an answer from your higher self or the Universe, then sure.
But don’t be like me, spending 20 hours a week on marketing the wrong business.
I guess it would have been worse, if me saving my yoga business had actually worked. Then I d still have the same business as 15 years ago, but instead of it needing zero hours of marketing in order to make a profit,
it would cost me 20 hours a week of content creation and sales to get the same result.
What I should have done, right from 2014 when I downsized my studio, creating the ideal circumstances for it to pick up and become profitable again:
“Either this thing is going to work. Or it isn’t. I m not going to do anything.”
Same thing now, publishing my books and setting up my coaching business, in order for them to be up and running should I take a job:
It is so very tempting to push my business harder.
Then getting a job is no longer a necessity, and just something I do because it would be fun.
To challenge myself, uplevel my game.
So very tempting to go all in, and spend 20 hours a week on marketing my new business (just like I did with the old), instead of spending it on publishing my books.
But I won’t.
I won’t grab, hold on, push, grind.
Instead of that, I will just go through my list with goals, and feel if they’re still meaningful and alive. And then follow up on whatever urge or hunch comes up.
Including leaping fearlessly if that’s the message I m getting.
It’s better to leap dangerously, after talking to God. Than to take baby steps towards your dreams, unguided.
My current list of goals
Instead of a list of goals, you could also use a vision board, change the background on your phone and so on. As long as your goals are clear.
The most important switch is to step away from using the translated, pre-fab daily actionable steps and instead connect with the dream (goal) in its purest form.
To illustrate here’s my list of goals.
–I have my dream body
I m a lot more specific, and it includes reference to someone whose body I like. So I know what kind of body I want. By connecting to that, it can guide my actions throughout the day.
–I create yoga schedules
The most fun part about yoga, and the thing which has frequently gotten strangled because I think I actually have to DO yoga, or make money from publishing my yoga books or whatever, the most fun part is creating yoga schedules.
I have decided that this fun and light activity, will be my focus.
If yoga comes from it, then that’s good. If not, also good.
–I connect with people and inspire them for example through online coaching.
This is me making all interaction valuable: Whether I go work for a boss, have a friend over, or do coaching: It is always about connection and conversation.
–I am a 7-Figure Rock Star Writer
Although I ve moved away from writing diaries, and do most of my thinking in conversation with others and no longer in writing:
Books will still be written.
Besides I have 10 out already, and 4 upcoming, under this name alone.
But ultimately, being a 7-Figure Rock Star is not so much about a business model, as it is part of my identity.
–I have a 7-figure household
This stems from cleaning up my basement one weekend: A sudden urge to do so! And I will keep my antennas up, to sense if I feel like for example, cleaning my bathroom, organizing my old photos.
I trust that if I need to clear the energy around something, or uplevel my house in some way, the call to do it will come.
So in short those 5 things are my goals:
-connection and conversation
-7 figure writer
-7 figure house hold
They’re the things I m going to feel into every day.
After scribbling them out, I wrote them down in my most beautiful notebook, the one that’s supposed to last the longest and does not contain mundane information.
The red ink I used for coloring, bled through to the next pages, which I now can’t use anymore.
I m taking that as a sign that for a very long time, I won’t have to.
Follow the marshmallows. *
*) Follow the marshmallows is based on the idea that the most likely way God will show you your path, is by making it look urgent and/or very appealing.
You will feel an urge, a rush of energy, a pull towards it!
Like running to the basement on a Saturday night!
It will actually require effort to not do it, to restrain yourself.
Don’t restrain, eat the marshmallow. And more likely than not, the second marshmallow will appear immediately after.