Part of my word-of-the-year includes the concept of activating. To SOAR, you need to take that first step, that leap of faith, that jump into the unknown. I am finding it hard to activate some long-held to-do activities.
This blog is a personal pep talk on discovering why I can’t take that first step, and then figuring how to implement more activation energy.
First, I have reviewed that these activity ideas fit my values and they are in areas of interest. Why do I hesitate to purchase the Groupon for the activity (the one I’ve got high on my bucket list) so long that it’s no longer on sale? Or wait so long to sign up for the class (another bucket list item, and this time with friends!) that it’s sold out? Or the sale date on that expensive trip I want to take passes? (And then say I won’t book it because it’s too expensive!) Why do I put off searching on Meet-up for like minded folks and plan some no/low-charge activities in things of interest like bird watching? Yes, I just keep putting off things I am interested in trying even when the opportunity is there!
Second, I looked at what could be diminishing my activation energy? What is holding me back; why am I not just doing it?
Is it just too many options? Do I have analysis paralysis because there are so many things I could do? And yet there is also nothing that I feel really passionate about. Too much – maybe. Interested in – yes. Passionate – no. So, this is a little bit of the why.
Is it my Inner Voice screaming fear of failure? Will doing (and failing at) this activity prove that I am, in fact, an Imposter, not competent, not good enough, not worthy. The voice that says “It is better not to try than to prove to the world that I’m not good enough”. I think THIS IS IT! I think I am afraid of failure. Afraid of not meeting expectations. Afraid of being proven not good enough.
Does knowing the big issue help? Can I change the self-limiting thought? Can I boost activation energy to getting things started if I recognize the fear?
For years I’ve called myself a latent adventurer. I often struggled with doing adventurous things by myself. Possibly because of fear of failure, I planned things to death. I believe I always had to find that high activation energy to get things planned and done. Taken that big breath (and intense planning) before the leap into the unknown. Yet, I have done some amazing things in my life. I wondered if looking back at a personal highlight reel of my life experiences would help me activate more activities moving forward.
- I’ve walked on the Great Wall of China, dined alone in a sidewalk café in Paris, stood in the center of Red Square, been to a desert oasis dinner in the Mideast, stood on the Equator, visited all 50 US states, and gone on an African safari.
- I’ve jet-skied, zip-lined, taken up yoga & zumba, done a hot air balloon ride, and learned SUP — all after turning age 50.
- On most foods-you-should-eat-before-you-die lists, I’m usually hitting 80-90%. (I’m a foodie, what can I say!)
- I’ve sailed up the New England Coast, hiked in multiple National Parks, and coached Junior Olympic volleyball (at 5’2” and not a natural athlete).
- I had a 30+ year career with a well-known MegaCorp, rising in a technical area where few women were successful.
Basically, I’ve done some amazing things and NOT FAILED.
I need to give myself permission to try something new. To possibly fail, but to more probably succeed. And I need to be OK with the attempt. I need to change the tapes in my head.
Moving forward this year, I will push towards an activation mindset by continuing to build a foundation of self-care & self-discovery with daily healthy lifestyle choices. And then, I will push to soar even higher with new activities building on some basic goal setting skills. It’s time to get going on setting up the attic office, exercising daily, and cooking more often. I need to pick one of the things I’ve always wanted to do and just try it – take that glass blowing class, get involved in birding, explore jewelry making, find a local book club. And then pick another.
My Daily, Healthy Lifestyle Choices:
- Eat healthy, nutrient rich foods – schedule shopping trips to buy the right foods, plan to cook more.
- Move every day – yoga, walk, Zumba.
- Comfort myself with coziness – warm throws, sitting in the sun, reading novels, crosswords, reading blogs – these are part of self-care and should not be viewed as wasted time.
- Use journaling to continue introspection for mindfulness – practice positivity, find joy in each day, have an attitude of gratitude, use affirmations.
- Connect with others – keep scheduling the walk & talks, dinner dates, fun with friends, time with Tim.
- Get outside in nature – walk outside, bike, hike.
- Continue to write. It’s the area I know I experience flow – a key sign of passion.
Push to Soar – Life by design, not default:
- More affirmations – I am living an active, vibrant lifestyle that embodies the interests I love and expresses the person I want to be.
- Break down the tasks into achievable steps with realistic goals & put them on the calendar.
- Plan 1-2 mini-adventures a month. Look at Meet-up for a spring birding event!
- Just order the next Groupon of interest! Don’t think – just order it.
- Shop for fresh fruit every other week and plan to cook once a week.
- Reward mini-milestones, the effort, the journey, and not just the endpoint
- Set up the attic office to create new spaces for hobbies – and then buy a new impractical ottoman for the space!
I need to change my self-limiting belief to activate the activities I want in my retirement lifestyle. What’s stopping you from soaring to your heart’s content?
Picture Credit: created with picture from Pixels.com