As soon as the words came out of my mouth, I instantly regretted them. I shouldn’t have suggested it. What a stupid idea that was, Lisa.
It was supposed to be a fun girl's night and I just screwed it up.
Girl’s nights have a special place in my heart. Truth be told, my affinity for girl’s nights probably comes from the fact that I am incredibly blessed with intelligent, brilliant, kind, wonderful friends. If you’re one of them, you know I’m talking about you!
My circle of friends is a very driven bunch. We love setting goals, we love achieving goals, and supporting each other to be our best selves. As a result, our goal nerdiness sometimes comes out. (We’ve been known to call ourselves GoalDen Girls, and Goal-Diggers… we’re pretty hilarious!).
One particular Friday night, we decided to get together over some wine and do some goal setting.
Unlike other girl’s nights, the goal was not to see how many bottles of wine we could drink (as my husband Troy often jokes).
This one was intended to enjoy each other’s company and establish goals… with a glass of wine in our hands.
Earlier that week I’d read an interesting article. It suggested asking those closest to you what they would do if they were in control of your life. It also highly recommended being open to the responses.
So, because I love peculiar questions, I proposed it to the group.
“Ladies, I know this is kind of off-the-goals-topic, but what would you do if you were in control of my life? And while we’re at it, can I tell you what I would do with your life?”
Nervous looks at each other across the table.
My ego kicked in here. “Jeez Lisa, why did you have to go and ruin such a fun night? Why are you so weird?!”
There was four of us around the table.
Two of us loved the idea (myself included).
The other two continued to look at me like I was crazy.
In hindsight, I don’t blame them.
As we broke out of the awkward interruption, we started chatting. My friends shared that they were nervous about this question– and rightfully so. They were unsure about what could possibly come from this, and what kind of wild ideas we’d have for them. They were willing to share their insights but didn’t really want to know what we would do with their lives.
We agreed that the two of us who were excited to try it would start.
By the end of the exercise, we were all in tears, laughter, smiles, and most of all, in even deeper love with each other.
This was one of the most beautiful conversations of my life. Coming from a woman who converses with people for a living (and is a chatterbox the rest of the time), this is saying something.
What transpired was genuine, heartfelt compliments. Sincere wishes for happiness, joy, and passion in each other’s lives. Poignant insights on what is possible for each of us, possibilities beyond what we could have conceived for ourselves.
To this day, we still bring up “aha moments” that were sparked from that question and its responses. Often, one of us will comment that someone’s words continue to touch them. And changed their perspectives forever.
I understand asking this question puts you in a very vulnerable place. But, if Brene Brown has taught us anything, it’s that vulnerability is fabulous and we all need to have more of it. (Side note – if you haven’t heard of Brene Brown, schedule her TedTalk for your lunch break… no seriously).
Asking others to weigh in and provide feedback on anything is tough. It’s nerve-wracking. It’s anxiety inducing.
But what do you learn without feedback?
The answer is: Not much.
I challenge you this week, to ask two or three people in your life that are close to you,
“What would you do if you were in control of my life?”
You can ask it as a general question. You can ask it as a specific question, as in what “would you do with my career if you were in control”. Or “what would you have me experience next in my life if you were in control?” Nothing is off-limits.
There is only one rule.
You have to listen.
Listen to learn. Listen to become wiser. Listen to expand your perspective of what’s possible for you.
Because we all have voices that tell us we aren’t good enough… or that a certain dream isn’t possible for us.
Because the day-to-day can get mundane and we forget that we are valuable, incredible, resourceful human beings.
Because sometimes we need to hear the truth from someone else.
Because sometimes hearing a new idea will spark us to a completely new direction.
Because sometimes being told you should do things differently reminds you of why you truly want what you want – and reminds you that you ARE on the right path today.
I said you have to listen. But you don’t have to obey. It’s still your life. You’re still in the driver’s seat (yes, you are!). It’s just that now your blindspots are disappearing. Suddenly, the roads you can take in your life got wider, and go in new, exciting directions.
Which way you choose to drive the car, and steer your life, is still your choice.
If someone asks you this question, be honest. Be kind. Don’t tell them what you think they want to hear. Tell them what in your heart you believe, and what you believe will help them grow.
Say thank you. Thank you to the person who asked you the question, for trusting you with such a precious and vulnerable opportunity. Say thank you to the person who gave you their thoughts and ideas, because they trusted you enough to share their honest truth.
I challenge you to go forth. To elevate and be elevated. To expand possibilities and be expanded upon. To imagine what’s possible, for you and those around you.
Signing off as the woman whose friends said she should get creative and start a business…
PS. Sometimes we need to hear it from someone else. Sometimes we need others to show us our own brilliance. Sometimes it works best when others challenge us and encourage us. To be opened up and expanded, sometimes we need support. Sometimes that nagging voice in the back of our head that tells you "you're not good enough" gets too loud. The time is now. If you're ready to tell that voice to go away once and for all, coaching is for you. If you know there's more out there for you but you're not sure what, coaching is for you. I LOVE helping men and women like you see what's possible in life (hint: if it's possible in the world, it's possible for you.)
If you don't want to spend another year, month, week or day waiting for the rest of your life, I'm here to support you to get what you want. I want you to feel fullfillment, joy, and happiness. The best way to discover if this is for you is to get in touch today (don't wait!) and book a FREE Discovery Call together. No obligation, no sales. Just a casual chat over the phone, call it coffee (or wine) with a friend.
I can't wait for you to awaken and create what's possible for you, beyond your wildest dreams!