Get Creative: Choose Your Vision & Set a Goal!
One of the things I learned early on in the part of my sport career is that in order to improve, we have to get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
I learned this from my husband.
When we started dating, he’d made the shift from marathoning and Ironman to ultra running because he wanted to address whether or not the mental perception of what a long, hard run consisted of would change if he became well versed at running ultras, then returned to the ‘shorter’ distance of the marathon.
Back then I had no clue about what I was doing in terms of training. Every run I did was the same. Sure, it might be longer or shorter, but it was always the same pace, the same heart rate and once things felt anything other than aerobic, I didn’t understand how to gauge how long and how often to stay in that space.
And while having had the opportunity to train under a world renowned coach for the past decade and learning how to fine tune my nutrition to where it is now both contributed significantly, if it weren’t for that first lesson that in order to grow, get better and break barriers I had in my mind of what I was or was not capable of, I first had to challenge myself.
Rather than slowing down when the rubber hit the road and my heart rate began to elevate or breathing became labored, I had to learn to not react by just stopping, but by looking at it and asking, “and, so what?”.
In other words, if you were to imagine a conversation in my mind in which the old personae may have said, “this feels tough; you’d better stop”, the new voice would reply, “ yes, it’s tough.. and?”.
It was the single epiphany I had to have in order to change myself from being a very average age-group athlete to learning the first step towards being a much more competitive one.
Then once you have the vision, the path unfolds and you follow it.
You believe it first, and then you go for it.
Well, guess what? The same is true in other areas of life; and for this blog post, I’m focusing on career.
If you’re calling in life is to become a doctor or lawyer, the steps are straight forward. By no means does this imply it’s an easy path, but the road map is laid out. Perform well in school, balance extracurricular activities, earn recommendations, get accepted to undergraduate, then medical school and so on.
Years of incredibly hard work to the end which one on this path would have envisioned for decades.
But what if you’re like me and didn’t have a clear vision from age two of what you wanted to do?
I knew I loved exercise, cooking and nutrition, so I pursued exercise as a hobby, studied that and nutrition in college and then went to culinary school.
But where did that leave me?
There were many times when I felt I was making too many career moves, going from one thing to another and it wasn’t for quite a while that everything began to make sense and coagulate.
Exercise Science student. Nutrition student. Personal fitness trainer. Culinary school student. Athlete. Writer. Blogger… and let’s not forget the foundation which made me so passionate about educating others about what we put in our bodies: personal investigation into what on earth was making me so sick all the time!
All the pieces began to align into a comprehensive, healthy living / education platform. I loved working for myself and being able to be flexible with hours, location and being my own boss.
But I did feel like there was something missing.
I loved the time I’d spend teaching classes or working with clients, but I missed having a team to work with during my down times and also, I often wondered how could I reach more people on a broader level.
And as an entrepreneur, I also wondered what else could I do as another revenue stream?
After all, if there’s only one of you and everything you do is your own man (err. woman!) hours, there is a limit, a threshold after which you can’t do anymore.
This is one reason I’ve become so enamored of my engagement with Beautycounter, the safe skincare company with whom I had the opportunity to partner with nearly one year ago.
It’s funny, when I first heard about it, I had this feeling that I was hesitant about network marketing.
I have no idea and there was no good reason.
I had zero experience with it and zero understanding of it.
But guess what?
Beautycounter’s Direct to Consumer Retail is the most straightforward business model you could imagine.
You try the product, you fall in love with it and you share it with those around you because once you know the alternatives, and what toxic ingredients they contain, you can’t not know it anymore.
Ignorance was bliss for me for a long time but as soon as I learned what I was using from the luxury spa as well as from the health food store had ingredients which were carcinogenic, as well as endocrine disruptors, I couldn’t use it any more.
And with this company, since its focus is education first (it’s a b corporation, which is not only educational; it has a triple bottom line, giving equal weight to people, planet and profit while traditional c corp businesses are all profit driven.), and its mission is to educate us all on how to make sure what we put on our skin is safe, and to provide us those very same safe options, it lined up perfectly with the education I was already doing on the nutrition front.
So how does this tie into the sport reference and getting uncomfortable?
The way to build a successful team in this capacity is to make myself uncomfortable every day. I reach out to peopled to tell them about what I’m doing. I get a lot of people who don’t respond or say ‘no’, but for every group who fall into that category, there is one who says a big, emphatic YES!
Whatever part of me felt initially that I wasn’t a ‘salesperson’ has faded under the bigger picture which is that my role as an educator supersedes that, and allows me to be a part of facilitating other people’s ability to build a business they love, with hours they control which can allow them the exit velocity from a job they don’t like or a sticky financial situation.
I get asked questions I don’t know the answer to and have to tell people, “I don’t know, but thank you for providing the opportunity to learn something by finding out the answer to your question. I will get back to you right away.”
What’s more; I’m not leaving anything behind. Since there’s such a seamless continuum between education about what we put in our bodies with what we put on them, this is yet one more platform I can speak from under the healthy living category I’m so passionate about.
Gather. Cook. Nourish your Body. Nourish Your Skin. And move.
Further, I have set goals for myself with regard to what I want to achieve in the company, the number people I want to reach and the size of the team I want to lead.
And I’m going big.
Just like sport. I set goals and ask myself- now, how are you going to do that? The answer? Have a vision, do the work, learn as you go, mediate and keep your eyes on the prize (the intention).
In both examples, I make a plan, prioritize, work hard and go.
And I would love to help you do the same.
If you’re already in love with your job, fulfilled and challenged on a daily basis and sure that without a doubt, you’re providing yourself the challenge to grow each and every day, incredible. Not many people have done the work necessary to land in that space and for that, you should be proud.
But if you’re stuck, unhappy with work or feeling dissatisfied, what have you got to lose?
Let’s get uncomfortable!