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Courage shows up in many ways.
There is nothing like sharing something publicly that makes it feel that much more REAL.
I’ve known for a long time that accountability works for me, but instead of making myself accountable to other people (meaning someone specific), I share things as a way of being accountable to myself.
Being accountable to myself means putting it out into the world.
Most of the time the things I publicly share get done (although not always in the time frame I hoped), but sometimes they don’t.
No one is knocking at my door asking me where the “thing” is that I said I was going to do.
I let go of what that looked like a long time ago. The truth is that most people are too busy thinking about themselves to worry about what you said you were going to do.
And the bottom line is, it’s your life.
This episode is going to be another ‘processing’ episode in that writing and recording this is helping me get clearer on what I’m doing and where I’m going.
My intention is that there’s value for you as I share this process. As much as I need it, I know someone else out there needs to hear this too.
This is Who I’ve Always Been
I’ve always had an optimistic, and positive disposition.
My Mom used to tell me that even as a little kid I treated everything as an adventure.
I was naturally drawn to the things that made me feel good and intentionally chose not to engage with things that felt heavy or dark. I didn’t know it at the time, but this is what I was doing (it didn’t take many horror movies for me to realize “why the HELL would I watch something that scares the bejeezus out of me?”).
I know this might sound obvious and I believe that a lot of kids are hard-wired to be optimistic – then the longer we’re in school our optimistic, cheerful, and dreamer attitude is taught “out of” us (and I’m not negating that there are plenty of children that have hard childhoods and deal with trauma, that’s not what I’m talking about here).
When I look back I realize how many times I made decisions based on the approval of other people (mainly my parents, who, as much as they always believed in me and supported me, brought their own “stuff” to the table).
The more I stepped into things that made me feel good, the more I was criticized (not at home). The criticism went two ways: it was either “you can’t do that” or “who does she think she is.”
I did a great visualization with my therapist last week and I had two very distinct memories show up: both were times when I was feeling really good about myself and someone (an authority figure /adult) felt the need to “put me in my place.”
The thought that comes to mind with this is “jealousy is an ugly emotion.”
We’ve all had those moments where we get a sideways comment from someone that has nothing to do with us and is completely about their own shit.
Here are a couple of examples (and I’m going to bullet list them here but there’s a story attached to each that I will share in more depth in the podcast):
- Answering the phone too happily at a business I owned (my business partner leaned towards the negative side)
- Having a boss say “can someone else besides Kim answer”… at a work meeting (my boss wasn’t being negative, but everyone else was sitting there like a bump on a log)
- Collaborating with a woman online years ago who made a snide comment that “everyone wants to talk to the WP Chick”
- Internet trolls. #nuffsaid
- Having a college professor make a snide remark after I gave a motivational speech (it was based on a Zig Ziglar article or phrase) that she was “ready to get her credit card out”
I’m DONE playing small.
Someone else’s lack of ability to show up in their own life is not my responsibility
Enter the pendulum swinging…
Here’s what I mean by that:
If you’re listening, the image that I’ve included in the written post is a pendulum with three ‘swings’ so-to-speak.
In the middle is my goal, which is being content with my decision.
And it’s probably more than contentment, it’s a knowing. I’m doing the work, stepping into this fully, and have done most of the processing (well, until the next thing shows up and I have something else to process).
The swing on the far right is the “excited” swing. Which is where I’ve been for the last couple of weeks.
The swing on the far left is the “pissed” swing (this is probably much more about processing than the excited side. Think of the ‘excited’ side as the enthusiastic child whereas the ‘pissed off’ swing is the adult who has become aware).
Sharing some of these stories and examples is 100% the pissed-off swing.
The beauty and magic happen here when I allow myself both sides of the emotional pendulum. I’m not making either side right or wrong – they simply are.
I know that by allowing myself to fully feel and experience both I’ll find that middle ground where the pendulum rests (knowing full well that it may swing to either side from time to time).
The two primary things that have gotten in my way:
- My light
Marianne Williamson said this perfectly:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
We do not need anyone else’s permission to be who we want to be and do what we want to do.
Of course, there are people who will tell you they don’t care what other people think and do whatever they want anyway. I call bullshit.
Not because I need to be right, but if the Dalai Lama has fears and doubts I think it’s probably safe to say it’s simply part of the human experience.
It ALWAYS comes back to what we do with it.
The Ultimate Key to Freedom is Complete and Total Self-Responsibility
For the longest time, I had a weird idea about what self-responsibility meant.
I basically interpreted it as meaning “taking responsibility when I make mistakes or mess up” (how depressing is that?!).
That’s only ONE piece of the pie.
Introducing the Self-Responsibility Pie (this is MINE, yours will look different):
You can see that self-responsibility is SO much more than just taking responsibility for the things we mess up.
It’s taking responsibility for EVERYTHING in our lives.
We can’t always choose what happens to us, but we get to choose how we respond and how we move through what happens to us.
How this Translates Into Business
That’s the million-dollar question, isn’t it?
I’ve done a few tangible things for myself this past week that have helped me come to a starting point.
Where I’ve stopped myself in the past with this is getting into fear of judgment.
I know that the more I step into this (and face those fears head-on), the easier it’s going to get. After listening to a great talk from Brene’ Brown earlier (that I then shared in an email… remember, #EverythingIsContent), she shared something that struck a nerve.
The things in her life that have become something bigger than she could have imagined are because she stepped into something that was uncomfortable. She felt the fear and did it anyway (I’m paraphrasing here, but if you didn’t get that email you can watch the video below).
So here we go…
Here’s what I’m starting with for the future of my business and what #FtheHUSTLE looks like. This will continue to unfold and evolve, but I’m LOVING where this is heading.
The 4-part framework for living the #FtheHUSTLE way:
Here’s another doodle for you (I’m having a blast 😊):
Now let’s go a little deeper with each.
I’m going to work on creating a definition and image of mindset that represents what it means to me. I never thought I needed mindset work (until therapy) because I was always putting something positive into my head.
All the audiobooks and programs I consumed in my 20s were about goals, achievement, accomplishment, and creating the life you wanted.
I’ve shared this before, and it’s not a dig, but there were all written from one perspective: a male in business.
It wasn’t until I found Dr. Wayne Dyer that I felt like I had “come home.”
There was an ease about his approach to things that felt like a comforting blanket that allowed me the rest I needed.
It was the first time I connected the dots that it’s not solely about action (and I am a hard-core DO-ER). It was about intention, how things make us feel, and the energy behind everything we do.
Here’s the kicker when it comes to mindset advice: We all bring our own unique experiences and circumstances to the table. What works for one person may not work for someone else in the same way. This is where #FtheHUSTLE was born.
The “mantra” of the internet marketer (bro marketer) was hustle, grind, do more… blah, blah, blah.
I was sick and tired of hearing single, young, white males tell me to work harder. I don’t want to go sideways with this, but holy hell I was already tired.
I was raising my kids by myself and didn’t see how I was going to “work harder.” SHUT UP already.
Here’s the thing though… that was 100% absolutely THEIR reality.
And I wasn’t their audience.
Nothing in me thinks this very over-generalized group of men was there to tell me I was doing something wrong.
Yet somehow I kept going back to the same dry well for water (it takes what it takes, though).
It’s not like there weren’t other people to follow, read, listen to, etc.
This was simply part of my path.
Is what you’re doing in alignment with your bigger WHY?
When I started my business my primary goal was FREEDOM. My therapist reminded me the other day that I’ve achieved this… regardless of what my income situation was like. I have massive freedom in my life – which is because of a combination of mindset and “doing the work.”
What brings YOU meaning doesn’t need to make sense to any other person on the planet.
I need to have fun, I need to feel creative, and I love to inspire and connect with people.
It was vitally important for me to show my kids that there was another way to live their lives – outside of societal expectations. The best way t do that was to show them, as challenging as it was at times.
Does the work you’re doing support how you want to live your life?
Living in Costa Rica is ALL ABOUT #FtheHUSTLE.
I shared recently that an offer I launched didn’t go the way I had hoped.
No regrets, it brought me here.
In a way, I set myself for the results I got because I promised myself that I was going to do exactly what they told me to do in the program (and how to do it).
As an example: the program I’m in suggests doing an “application” to attend a free training. There is NOTHING in me that liked how that felt.
However, they had plenty of data that showed it worked.
They also had data showing it worked without… but I decided that I was going to be a good student and do it the way they did.
I have no doubt the process turned people off (and maybe I could have phrased things a little differently) – but more than that was my energy around the entire thing.
I’m not worried about who signs up for things or when they sign up. I truly believe if I’ve gotten clear about how what I’m doing is going to help people, the right people will buy.
And yes, that means I have to market and promote it also, but it has to be in a way that feels right to me.
I’d love to know when it became so horrible to want to earn a good living.
Here’s the crazy thing… we live in a culture (Western culture) that won’t talk about money, you’re greedy if you want a lot of money, yet we idolize people like Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and athletes, influencers, etc. (and I know, I’m being super general here again, take a lot of this with a grain of salt. It’s to make a point).
If I never heard another thing about Elon Musk it would be too soon.
I’m not negating what he’s accomplished, I just don’t need to hear about him anymore.
The ironic thing is that people who judge you for wanting a lot of money, to earn a good living, or God forbid want “stuff” are being hypocritical.
Who am I to say what someone should or shouldn’t want?
Ride a bike or drive a Ferrari, I don’t care. Just be a decent human being.
And a simple reminder: we get to curate the things we consume.
I don’t follow or pay attention to people that rub me the wrong way.
I stopped watching mainstream news probably 15+ years ago.
If how I live my life doesn’t work for someone else that’s perfectly fine, I simply ask that you change the channel.
That got a little ranty. 🤣
I don’t think much of that explained a whole lot about how this translates into business, but here are few things I’m doing:
- A NEW site (of course). But I’m going to be patient about it (with somewhat of a deadline). I’m going to have photos taken in Costa Rica (now on the hunt to find a photographer down here), work on the messaging, and get clear on who I’m serving. I have a feeling this might challenge me a bit but that’s O.K., I’m ready.
- Content: I have to really step back and do my due diligence with the existing content on my site, SEO for where I’m headed, what should remain on my KD site, and what will move to the site of the new service (Inked Email). I’m going to enlist (hire) friends who are savvier with SEO than I am to help me craft a plan.
- Offers: Oh boy. This is a WHOLE can of worms… but I have an idea already, so as that gets clearer I’ll share what that is. I’ll start with a new email course as my opt-in (along with the #FtheHUSTLE newsletter – which needs an updated follow-up sequence).
- Coaching and events: #FtheHUSTLE is RIPE for this. I’m working on a new group coaching program and have already mentioned I’ll be hosting the first #FtheHUSTLE live event in Costa Rica (ideally later this year, but by Feb. of 2023 at the latest… because what the bucket, July is right around the corner).
- Traffic: In addition to organic (content & social), I’m going to be more deliberate about who I have on the podcast, will be launching #FtheHUSTLE TV, and investing in paid traffic. I have a couple of ideas in mind but the paid channels will happen after the new site is done (and the message is crystal clear).
- Relationships: I’ve mentioned before that I’ve been connecting a lot more on Twitter (of all the social platforms it’s definitely where I get the most traffic). The amazing thing is that I’m truly connecting with people and developing new friendships/relationships. I’ll be having some of these people on my podcast in the future (or #FtheHUSTLE TV) and I’m excited to see where this takes me.
Let’s wind this down (this post is a doozy).
This is going to be a fun ride and I’m just getting started.
The biggest opportunity is to not personalize who chooses to join me on the journey. I’m sure there are plenty of you who will stick around but I know as I change gears it won’t be for everyone.
And that’s O.K. too.
This is what I’m meant to do.
Here we go.