You are enough already
I read a lot of stories and advice on social media about how to run a successful business, how to make the most of your time, how to inspire people and generally how to be something better or different to what we are today. It can feel a bit overwhelming like we should all be aiming to be someone or somewhere else. Maybe we don’t need to do any of this. Maybe being successful is just about being content with your life and yourself today.
EDITOR’S NOTE: SEE PART 4 AND PRIOR IN THIS AMAZING SERIES BELOW:
Contentment does not always have to mean being happy either – it is about being content with the way you live your life and who you are as a person – including your strengths and weaknesses. It is that contentment that enables you to make the most of your peaks and survive your troughs.
Now that might be working towards World Peace, inventing renewable energy, running a multi-million-pound business, getting the ironing done, emptying bins, caring for people or simply walking the dog – because we are all different and that’s ok.
All of my heroes and role models have led simple, unassuming lives. Their value and gifts have been created by achieving contentment with their lives and themselves. You do not always have to do more or to be more. You can be enough just as you are. Be brave, be honest and be you.
Make sure you know who your true heroes are
I don’t believe it is possible to ‘make it’ all by yourself. Everyone needs heroes, sometimes they are your family, sometimes friends, sometimes colleagues, sometime people you meet for short periods, sometimes it may be people you don’t even know. But whoever they are, true hero’s will::
- Believe in you
- Push you forward when you want to go back
- Tell you the harsh truth when you want to hide from it
- Hold your hand when it’s too scary to go it alone
- Show you how to work it out for yourself and become someone else’s hero.
I’m lucky, so far I have been blessed with 8 heroes:
- My dad
- My secondary school form teacher
- My maths tutor
- My university professor
- My first boss (who took a chance on me)
- My second boss (who believed in an ‘outsider’)
- My spiritual mentor and guide
- My husband
I may have more to come or not – I don’t know but I do know you need to pass it on and make sure you can be a hero for someone else too.
Only you can save yourself
Ultimately there is only one person qualified, capable of and motivated enough to save you and that’s you.
- Accept yourself, warts and all
- Ditch the baggage and forgive
- Create your reality don’t get pulled into someone else’s.
Ask for support and guidance but don’t be fooled by a system or model that will do it all for you. It won’t, it’s an illusion or a very clever marketing campaign that probably costs a lot of money. There’s only one way through – blood, sweat, and tears. Good people won’t lie to you but they will help you navigate the trough until you reach your peak. And then you may need to help them too.
Peaks and troughs are the natural flow of life, it’s how we grow and learn. Don’t be scared of them, go with the flow and surround yourself with genuine people who do the same.
It’s really not so scary when you know the drill and others are with you too.
In order to live I believe that you have to think about death – quite a lot actually. That’s not because I think that we should all be morbid but because if we can truly grasp mortality, we will stop faffing around, focus on what’s important and make the best of the time we have. If not, we might end up talking about regrets rather than a life well lived.
Leaving a legacy
One of my dad’s final wishes just before he died, was to have a day at the seaside. So we did, we went to Mablethorpe. A few weeks later, he was carried out of his home for the last time to spend a mere 48 hours in a hospice before departing on his next adventure. When he left, he needed so little it hardly filled a small bag.
The years we spend furnishing the house, buying the clothes, having the latest gadgets, chasing the promotion, missing key moments in life to make the deadline ultimately all come down to this. Things are of no value, you don’t need them in death. What really matters is the legacy you leave behind.
My dad’s legacy was strength, courage, kindness, unconditional, never-ending love and an ability to be himself unfettered by the world around him. We didn’t have a rich life measured by material wealth but we were rich beyond imagination in the ways that mattered.
If you are going to be late home from work tonight let it be because you are building a legacy not trying to get a promotion. If you are worrying about money let it be because you need to keep your family safe and fed not because you need a larger house or a new gadget. If you are worried about what others think of you – please don’t.
And on that note, I will end this article – be brave, be kind and be you.