For those of you who are new to this conversation, I had a few powerful interactions with one of my clients/mentors in 2012 that utterly changed my life and work. The first question he gifted me was, “What would I do if I only had 30 days left?” because when he was faced with that reality, his top 3 answers were making good on his promise of marrying his wife in a church, getting his business in order for his successor, and finishing his book. The wisdom he shared with me during those 30 days continue to inspire and guide me on my messenger journey.
Last time, I wrote: “If I had 30 days, I would focus on your light…”
This week, my answer is: “I would redefine success… again…”
“Amanda, I saw what you did at your event. Wow! You’re really something,” he started. “I’ve been thinking about it for the last few months and I wanted to talk to you today about helping you scale your business to reach tens and hundreds of thousands of people. I’m talking about real impact…”
My stomach turned and I looked down at my coffee while the business coach finished his sales pitch, half-listening to him as I noticed the conflicting feelings that coursed through my mind and body.
I want to reach more people with my message, and the feedback from the Dare to Dream event was so good that I know I have something that could help a lot more folks… even beyond the books.
“So, what do you think?” he asked.
“Well, I do want to reach more people…” My stomach flipped again.
“Good! Here’s what I’m thinking…” He shared his full sales presentation in the middle of the coffee shop, ending it with, “You ready to say YES to your dreams?”
Wait… What’s my dream again?
Why doesn’t this feel right?
If you’ve spent any time immersed in personal and/or professional development because you know you have value to give the world, chances are that success looks something like:
— Taking your message to the world
— Reaching as many people as you possibly can
— Writing a book
— Speaking powerfully from stages
— Facilitating life-changing results for your clients
— Building an awesome community
— Living in abundance while you’re doing what you love
This was MY conscious list in 2012 when this dude offered to help me fast-track my dreams, but my stomach flipped for a few reasons.
One of those reasons was addressed by Ruben during the interview I recorded with him a few weeks before he passed…
After he’d answered all of the questions, I decided to ask him to finish our previous conversation: “Ruben, how do you maintain balance between work and life?”
“Why do you separate them? That’s the problem.” His quick reply caught me off-guard. He may have been fragile physically, but his mind was fast as a whip.
All I could do was stare at him and wait while the cameras rolled. Did he just switch from interviewee to coach? Just like our first conversation. He can’t help but coach. It’s who he is.
“What if you didn’t separate them? What if you just lived in the present moment, choosing to powerfully impact every person you interact with? It could be your husband, your son, your clients, or the cranky lady at the drive-thru window.”
He pulled no punches with me [probably because he didn’t have the time to coddle me to an answer], helping me to see where my unconscious beliefs about success were keeping me from living a whole, integrated life.
I was so committed to taking my message to the world, in all of the ways I listed above, that I spent most of my time DOING all the things that promised me that success and hardly any time BEING.
Right… hardly any time…
— BEING with my loved ones, looking in their eyes, focusing on the light in them
— BEING with myself and some of the emotions that were warning me of an emerging mess
— BEING with the reality of my declining physical well-being
The only BEING that I experienced was with my clients. Nothing else existed while all of me showed up to listen, cry with them, reflect, and help them uncover the sacred code of their story… and then figure out how to bring it to every area of their lives and eventually the world.
But when it came to moving the business forward and running a household, I spent more energy DOING than BEING.
So, even if I had achieved the definition of success the coach offered me—reaching thousands and adding zeroes to my bottom line—I would have been in some pretty serious trouble.
Actually, if I had achieved it,
I might have sacrificed everything else that mattered to me.
Truly, I might not be here today.
That conversation with Ruben literally changed my DNA and has haunted, I mean guided, me ever since.
I’ve spent enough time in the messenger/expert/coach industry to know that it’s a common belief that in order to reach our dreams, we have to make some hefty sacrifices.
What if you could leave the world better than you found it AND do it without compromising anything else?
Now, obviously, I’m not saying that the journey doesn’t require sacrifice because it does. It will always require you to let go of old beliefs, st*ries, and identities that are not true. It will always ask you to put more skin in and invest time, energy, and resources beyond what’s comfortable. And, when you finally feel like you’ve arrived somewhere, it will ask you to make the ultimate sacrifice—become willing to let it all go if it’s no longer in the highest good for you and everyone else.
But your message—your true intention—does not require you to consistently sacrifice your wellbeing physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, financially, or otherwise. [That is, unless you are one of those first collective-paradigm-breakers like the first woman CEO who had to sacrifice to break through the glass ceiling, or a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who paid the ultimate price to shatter the bonds of racism.]
That’s why a large part of my mission with my work is to help people REDEFINE SUCCESS or IMPACT for themselves.
You want to be a successful speaker?
Okay cool. And… how many days are you willing to travel given the fact that you are a partner and parent of young children?
You want to write a book?
Awesome. And… does it make more sense for you to monetize the message before you invest so much time and money into the book development process?
You want to develop curriculum?
Yay! And… is an online course the place to start, or do you need a pilot program and humans sitting across from you to give you feedback and fuel your mission with more connection?
You want to grow a business?
Hell yeah! And… where does that business fit in the rest of your life? How will you take care of your body, your family, and your other dreams of travel, dance, and more?
What is your TRUEST dream?
What does REAL SUCCESS look and feel like to you personally and professionally?
Now, I should warn you. This path isn’t for the faint of heart.
You might start to feel like Neo in The Matrix, when he is waking up to the reality that everything he knew wasn’t quite as it seemed.
You might get upset at the individuals and collectives that have been unconsciously [some consciously] programming you to believe these st*ries of success because it will keep you buying their programs and attending their events.
You might even see something in your life that you haven’t been able to see, and then have to make some hard decisions about who and what stays, and who and what cannot continue with you.
My redefining process was pretty easy with the question of 30 days, but living into that new definition over the last six years has required courage that I didn’t know I had.
The courage to…
— dig for the st*ry that was repeatedly sabotaging my life and business and face it
— halt my marketing until I could find a way that felt more true
— stop reaching for the light in the darkness
— walk away from toxic relationships and environments I thought I needed
— disappoint people I love
— continue to lead honestly when darkness descended
— move to a new state and start over
— fully experience the part of my message about trusting that life has my back
It was all worth it, but I couldn’t have done any of this without the guides and allies that showed up on my path to help me dig through the beliefs and st*ries I’d been told and telling myself about who I am, what it takes to be successful, and even The Wind and its universal laws.
This is the path of the mindful messenger, and it’s a path of subtleties, which is why I’ve decided to create a FREE video interview series called Waking Up from The Messenger Matrix: Redefining Impact, Success, and So Much More.
I’m going to enlist some of the amazing messengers I have mad respect for, and have some deep-dive conversations into some of the beliefs we automatically take on when we decide we have value to give the world and subscribe to The Messenger Matrix.
CLICK HERE to join us.