I absolutely love being a life coach.
I love helping clients create the life they really want. Taking a look at where a client feels dissatisfied and using all different kinds of tools to help them clean up their thinking, shore up the boundaries in their lives and relationships and then work on creating all of the deliciousness they want. This stuff works.
Like any effective coach I actively use the tools and exercises I teach to my clients on myself, and today I want to tell you about a tool I kinda took to extremes at one point and what I did to get back to the life I wanted and back on my own version of the “Yes! Express”.
So, the tool I’m referring to is teaching clients how to stop saying “Yes” to everything people ask them to do. How to get off the “Yes” train to nowhere. How did I take this to extremes you ask? Well, I’ll tell you, instead of saying “Yes” only to things that really mattered to me, I just stopped saying “Yes” to basically everything. Yes, extreme.
You see, I was a proverbial people pleaser; “Yes” was my favorite word.
I know I’m not alone.
There are a lot of people in the world (you may be one of them) whose calendars are so full and they are so stressed that they find themselves crying in their bubble baths at night from the pressure. Actually, who am I kidding, you wouldn’t be in a bubble bath, (no time for self care), you’d be the girl in the SUV crying behind your big black shades as you pick up the kids for the tenth day in a row in the carpool you agreed to ‘cause you thought it would save you time.
There came a time where I was done chairing all of the fundraisers, baking cookies for every bake sale and manning booths at charitable events that didn’t really mean anything to me.
There came a time when I was done saying “Yes” every time someone asked me to watch their kids so they could have a much needed “Me” day. I was a stay-at-home mom; I was an easy, willing target. I wanted to be kind and helpful but when I started to feel resentful I knew I needed a change.
Everyone knew they could count on me to say “Yes” until the day they couldn’t because I stopped raising my hand, I stopped saying “Yes” to everything.
I used the tool, editing my schedule down to next to nothing. But that’s where it went bad. Things got so slow and quiet. You get it. I got off the “Yes train” and then crickets… which was great for a while, until it wasn’t. I was ready to get back on… sort of.
So here’s what I did and if you’re ready to speed things up this is what I’d encourage you to do, ‘cause people like you and me who love to give of themselves to the world need to protect their time.
I encourage you to consider what you really want for your life. When you are ready to say “Yes” to more of life’s juiciness you don’t want to end up where you were before you got off the train. So let’s talk about one of my other favorite tools, creating an intentional life. This means spending your time and saying “Yes” to things that are going to help you get what you want in your life.
And no, it’s not selfish; it’s essential to fulfilling your destiny.
So, what are your top 5 goals for your life? When it’s all said and done what do you want your life to have been made up of?
Here are a couple of mine to help get you started:
I want to have had a wildly successful career and leave a large body of work as a legacy.
I want have been fit and healthy my whole life.
I want to have had a well-traveled life filled with lots of adventures.
I want to have served people who are less fortunate than myself in big ways.
I want to have had deep meaningful relationships.
So, to create a life of intention you create opportunities or seek out things that will propel you toward your life goals. You say “Yes” to the things that matter to you. Your schedule should consist primarily of things to move you towards your life goals.
When people start calling again (‘cause you’re back on the radar) with wants and needs I also encourage you to make a list of questions to ask yourself for when opportunities come your way. If you answer yes to the questions, say yes to the responsibility.
Here is my list:
Do I have time or will I be willing to make time for this?
Will this activity propel me closer to one of my life goals?
Will this benefit a cause I care deeply about?
If I say no to this will I regret it later?
Are you ready to speed things up?
Is it time? xo