What Should I Do?

What Should I Do?

This is such an important topic because this question is so often asked.

Sometimes the question is being asked unconsciously – you are doing so much, and feeling burnt out, overwhelmed, drained, or lacking inspiration and passion, and the unconscious questions trying to be asked is, “What should I do… What should I be focused on… What really matters?

The reason so many people can relate to this is because we get so used to being busy that we don’t take care of the real business in our lives and don’t create real productivity. We are so used to reacting, putting out fires and meeting everybody else’s needs and agendas, instead of getting really clear about what our own agenda is.  You hear people constantly ask, “How’s it going?” And your reply is “I’m so busy.”

There is something you are designed to be, to do, to create, to contribute. There’s a way you’re designed to show up in the world that is uniquely your design, and it comes with unique goals, projects, relationships, tasks, ways to show up, ways to serve, etc. It’s all part of the design package. Just like nature, the apple tree is designed to produce the fruit of apples, not to be a pine tree, an oak tree and a rose bush.  If the ecosystem started to act like that, the entire ecosystem would collapse.

We have to start unraveling what our own vision and mission is – get back to our core, back to our real yes, back to what we really want to do, and even look at the things that other family, friends, and co-workers are excited about, but may not be the thing for us.

Sometimes there’s things that appear to be working in our lives, things that seem to be kind of going good. You’ve heard the saying, you got a good thing going here, kid; don’t mess with it. Don’t fix it if it ain’t broke. Well, that’s not entirely accurate. I put it another way, what’s working that’s in the way?

Just because something isn’t broken doesn’t mean that it’s not meant to evolve. I use the example often of the Rubik’s cube, that little square puzzle, and it’s all messed up, all different colors on each side, and the point of the puzzle is you have to keep turning and twisting until you get every side a solid color. You start to do it, and at some point you get one of the sides solid. You get a solid white, and that’s a success. It’s working. However, what do you have to do to get the next side working? You have to mess up what you just got working. You could say, it’s not broken; it’s working. Why would I want to mess that side up? You have to mess it up, if you’re going to get the next side working. Then you get two sides working. Victory! But now what do you have to do to keep getting the next side, the next side? You’ve got to keep messing up what’s working. You have to keep messing up the level of success you’ve just achieved. You have to be more focused on the grander vision than on necessarily short term payoffs.

It doesn’t mean you don’t appreciate them and celebrate them. “I got another side!” You’ve got to keep letting it go and moving and evolving. A lot of times in our life there are certain things that are working at a certain level. Maybe your marriage is not broken, but is it really thriving? Maybe you’ve got to kind of break things, or at least shake things up. As I like to say, sometimes my work is not just to comfort the afflicted, but to afflict the comfortable.

Maybe you’ve got a job that’s not broken, it’s kind of working. It’s paying the bills. They’re not necessarily mistreating you, maybe they even appreciate you. You’ve got a good thing going, but you’re not truly on fire. You’re not fully alive and passionate, and there’s something more that’s trying to emerge. You might have to mess it up a little bit at first in order to say yes to your bigger yes.

This is challenging, because we’re always seeking another level of status quo, equilibrium, balance, and once we find that balance we don’t want to lose it. How do you walk? If you never ever wanted to lose your balance, you couldn’t walk, because every time you walk what you’re really doing is falling forward. You’re going off balance, catching yourself. Off balance, catching yourself. Off balance, catching yourself, but at a new level each time, in a new space, a more progressive space. So you’re off balance, catch yourself, rebalance. Off balance, catch yourself, rebalance… Before you learn to do that, you fell. As a child you got up, you fell, you got up, you fell. You just kept falling forward, and eventually you were walking. Because of this mechanism that’s always trying to bring us to a state of equilibrium and balance, we are more inclined or have more commitment to staying the same, rather than changing and continuing to grow. So that’s one of the big things we have to begin to move out of.

One way to begin to do this process of determining what’s important to you now is to make a list of everything you do and everything on your list that you think you have to do. Perhaps it’s the next months’ worth of things, and some of them are things you do all the time, and some of them are things you’re adding to your list over the next month. Look at that list, and start to identify, “If I was guaranteed success, what are the few things that would be a hell yes?”

You can also break the list down into structures, which might be a little easier. You have several life structures: health, wealth, work, relationships, spiritual growth, personal development, and service. You can break down all the tasks into these categories. What are all the things you’re doing in the category of health? What are all the things you’re doing in the category of wealth, work, relationships, spiritual growth, personal development?

Then within those categories, identify the two or three most important things that would really take your life to the next level, or that area to the next level, that are passionate, that are a yes, that are a must.  It doesn’t mean they’re not all important, but there’s always one or two or three that are really calling out to be developed. Rarely are all of them urgently needing to be developed, and what happens is that when you focus on the one or two or three that really matter, that are hell yeses, the ramifications, because it’s really holistic, it’s really one, it impacts the others. For example, some of them have higher leverage. If you work on your health and get into great physical shape, the energy you have, the blood circulation, it improves your thinking. You end up having more energy to do more work. You end up having a better emotional state, and it improves your relationships. You end up having more clarity, and you’re able to be more creative and in your personal develop area. That’s a very high leverage category that almost always should be one of your main categories.

As you break down this list, you want to just go through the list as an exercise, and discover what are your reasons for doing everything you do. Start to notice there are certain patterns that keep recurring: “I’m doing this so I don’t look bad… I’m doing this so I don’t feel guilty… I’m doing this so I don’t feel shame… I’m doing this so I don’t lose the job or lose the opportunity… I’m doing this so that that person doesn’t think I’m selfish or a bad mom or a bad parent…”

Then notice also, what is it you really want to do? This can even be another list of the things you really want to do, but you’re not doing. You can start to really see what are some of the core patterns driving you. The more you see it, an expanded awareness gives you actual real choice and begins the process of real change.

Now, begin the process of organizing out of your plan all of these other commitments, all of these other things, to the extent that you can. The ones you can’t, immediately begin the journey or the process of renegotiating those commitments, so that you can begin to get them off your list and off your plan. Ultimately, you want a plan that progressively reflects who you are at the deepest core, your deepest yes, your deepest passion, your hell yes, your musts, the great, not just the good, and it feels more and more authentic and congruent.

Now you’ve got a plan, a real plan that if you don’t already know what your bigger vision is, it’s going to start to tune your more into it.

To support you in mastering this, listen to the in-depth podcast on the subject, where we break it down and put it into real-life practice TODAY. This will be a real game-changer.

To Your Emergence!

Stay inspired!

Derek

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Full Transcript
[The following is the full transcript of this episode of the Emergence, A Revolutionary Path for Radical Life Change, with Derek Rydall Podcast]

Welcome, Derek Rydall here, founder of the Law of Emergence and author of the bestselling book Emergence. It’s just such an honor and a pleasure to be here with you on this journey of Emergence, as we continue this deep dive into understanding and mastering the principles of real productivity, power, and purpose, so that we can live our true purpose and make a mighty impact in this world. We’re talking today about the topic What Should I Do, and this is such a powerful topic. It’s such an oft asked question. I have so many things that I’m doing, what should I pick? What should I choose? Out of all the options, what should I do? Sometimes the question is being asked unconsciously, we are doing so much, and we’re feeling burnt out or overwhelmed and drained and lacking inspiration and passion, and the unconscious question trying to be asked is, what should I do? What should I be focused on? What really matters? What’s really going to move the needle?

We get so used to being busy that we don’t take care of the real business, that we don’t create real productivity. We are so used to reacting and putting out fires and meeting everybody else’s needs and agendas, your inbox is a nice organizing place for everybody else’s agenda, and we just get so used to that and in such a momentum of that, and even sometimes you feel like you matter, you feel like you exist. It’s the great Descartes, I think, therefore I am. Today it would be, I’m busy, therefore I am. So we have a sense of self, a sense of we exist, we have solidity, and we matter, when we’re busy. You hear people constantly, How’s it going?I’m so busy.It’s like a badge of honor, even though on one level we don’t feel great about it, but we feel kind of good about it. It’s this interesting dichotomy, right?

Ultimately, if we really want to live a powerful, thriving, healthy, truly successful life, and by success I mean doing the thing you’re truly designed to do and be, making the contribution and giving the gifts you’re truly designed to give. The apple tree is designed to produce the fruit of apples. If the apple tree was busy trying to be a pine tree and an oak tree and a rosebush, and it was getting all in the other trees and branches and trying to create all these things in its life, even if it managed to eke out a little rose, of course it would be impossible. Nature can’t actually contradict its own nature, but we can fool ourselves. If the ecosystem started to act like that, the entire ecosystem would collapse. There is something you are designed to be, to do, to create, to contribute. There’s a way you’re designed to show up in the world that is uniquely your design, and it comes with unique goals, projects, relationships, tasks, ways to show up, ways to serve, etc. It’s all part of the design package.

Again, mostly our schedules and lives get filled with reactions, with coping mechanisms, with trying to not get hurt or not lose something, or make sure we have enough to survive, or doing all these things for other people, because we have a shadow, and we don’t want to be looked at as being mean or selfish or a bad boy and girl, and we’re afraid we’ll get rejected and be unlovable and be all alone and homeless, broke and die. So like literally that’s the unconscious motivation. We have to begin to identify that compulsive drive, because it’s not healthy. It’s not helping. It’s actually enabling others in our lives to also not be in their power, and it’s completely draining us and burning us out and sapping all of the energy we need to be who we really are, to create the life we’re really meant to live, and to give the gifts and make the difference we’re really designed to do.

So we come back to, what should I do? What should I do with my life? What should I do with my day, my time, my year, my body, my abilities, my energy? What’s the very best use of it? Now, it’s beyond the scope of this particular podcast to get into the idea of vision. Ultimately you have to start there. There’s other podcasts where I talk about how to tap into that, but there is a great vision, a seed of potential planted in the soil of your soul, that you want to begin to really cultivate and uncover and discover, and really ask, what is the great vision of my life? What is the bigger purpose for which I’m here? That’s the 30,000 foot level. Down more at the 1,000 foot level, or the 100 foot level, or the ground level, our life is filled with so many things. For many of us we’ve kind of got to start there and sort of get some breathing room again.

You’ve maybe heard this saying, that the good is the enemy of the great. What that means, for example, is maybe you get invited to go out with some friends, and it seems like a good idea. It might be fun, and you find yourself at the bar or the club or wherever, and you’re sitting there, and people are having fun. It’s not a bad thing to be doing. It’s fun. It’s enjoyable for a lot of people, but you kind of find yourself wondering, what am I doing here? I’m telling myself I don’t have time to exercise, my body’s feeling broken down and tired. I’m not making time for that, but here I am appeasing a friend, or distracting myself by going out. I’ve been saying I want to have more time with this other friend, or I want to be writing my book or building my business, but here I am doing this thing. I don’t really belong here.

Again, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. Maybe it’s like a charitable event, like a fundraiser for the school or something. It’s not a bad thing. In fact, for some people that is their great thing. That is the thing they’re really truly passionate and meant to be doing. So there’s no judgment, but it’s not your thing. You can’t do everything, even every good thing. There is supposedly a passage in the Bible where Jesus is being asked to stay in this one area, and he’s like, No. I have to go to some other town. I have to keep spreading the good news. They’re like, Stay.He’s like, No. I have more work to do. I have to keep moving. There’s lots of things you could be doing. There’s lots of people that could use your help, your service, your support, including your children 24/7, your partner, your spouse, your clients, your friends, your family. There’s lot of things you could be doing to help them all, but that doesn’t mean you should be doing it.

Because of guilt and shame and our core shadows, we have a life not so much by intention or design, but by default. We’re so busy doing all these good things, and sometimes not even good things, because we’re doing so many things that aren’t the great things, the right things, we are, like I said, tired, overwhelmed, feeling more disconnected, unfulfilled, and then we have to turn to things to quell the pain of feeling so unfulfilled, of feeling so tired. So we drink more caffeinated beverages, or worse. We drink more alcohol. We drink stuff to put us up, and we drink stuff to bring us down, or eat stuff to ground us or to comfort us, or watch reality TV or binge watch entire shows on a night or a weekend that, again, in and of itself might be a great thing to do in its right place, and for the right person at the right time, but when it’s coming from that compulsive need, or that feeling of pain and unfulfillment, a lot of times it’s another distraction.

Because we’re not honoring the great within us, the truth within us, the real yes within us, we get burned out. We get tired. We get disconnected. We become unfulfilled, even depressed, and then because we don’t understand what that’s all about, or even aren’t willing to feel it, we create another layer of coping and defense mechanisms, and that turns into addictions and other compulsive behaviors to not feel what we’re feeling, that we’re feeling tired, burnt out, depressed, and unfulfilled. So we have to start unraveling that and get back to our core, back to our real yes, back to what we really want to do, what we were really designed to do, and even looking at the good things that other family, friends, and stuff are excited about, but isn’t our great thing. It might be their great thing, but it’s not ours.

I put it another way, what’s working that’s in the way? Sometimes there’s things that appear to be working in our lives, things that seem to be kind of going good. You’ve heard the saying, you got a good thing going here, kid; don’t mess with it. Don’t fix it if it ain’t broke. Well, that’s not entirely accurate. Just because something isn’t broken doesn’t mean that it’s not meant to evolve. Right? I use the example often of the Rubik’s cube, that little square puzzle, and it’s all messed up, all different colors on each side, and the point of the puzzle is you have to keep turning and twisting until you get every side a solid color. You start to do it, and at some point you get one of the sides solid. You get a solid white, and that’s a success. It’s working. However, what do you have to do to get the next side working? You have to mess up what you just got working. You could say, it’s not broken; it’s working. Why would I want to mess that side up? You have to mess it up, if you’re going to get the next side working. Then you get two sides working. Victory! But now what do you have to do to keep getting the next side, the next side? You’ve got to keep messing up what’s working. You have to keep messing up the level of success you’ve just achieved. You have to be more focused on the grander vision than on necessarily short term payoffs.

Again, it doesn’t mean you don’t appreciate them and celebrate them. Got another side! I got another side! You’ve got to keep letting it go and moving and evolving. A lot of times in our life there are certain things that are working at a certain level. Maybe your marriage is not broken, but is it really thriving? Maybe you’ve got to kind of break things, or at least shake things up. As I like to say, sometimes my work is not just to comfort the afflicted, but to afflict the comfortable. Maybe you’ve got a job that’s not broken, it’s kind of working. It’s paying the bills. They’re not necessarily mistreating you, maybe they even appreciate you. You’ve got a good thing, kid. You’ve got a good thing going, but you’re not truly on fire. You’re not truly alive, fully alive and passionate, and there’s something more that’s trying to emerge. You might have to mess it up a little bit at first in order to say yes to your bigger yes. There might be a lot of good things you’re doing in that job, or good things about that marriage, and maybe you’re doing a lot of good things, but they’re not the great things. Maybe you watch TV together at night, and it’s kind of good. Maybe you have a meal at night, and it’s kind of good. Maybe you spend some time on the weekends, and it’s kind of good, but it’s not the great. It’s not what you really desire. What you desire is a relationship that’s on fire with passion, with romance, with adventure, with creativity, yet to move toward that you would have to start saying no to some of the good things. You would have to start messing up what’s working, and open up to the great, open up to the bigger yes, to the greater vision.

This is challenging, because we’re always seeking another level of status quo, of equilibrium, of balance, and once we find that balance we don’t want to lose it. How do you walk? If you never ever wanted to lose your balance, you couldn’t walk, because every time you walk what you’re really doing is falling forward. You’re going off balance, catching yourself. Off balance, catching yourself. Off balance, catching yourself, but at a new level each time, in a new space, a more progressive space. So you’re off balance, catch yourself, rebalance. Off balance, catch yourself, rebalance. Before you learn to do that, you fell. As a child you got up, you fell, you got up, you fell. You just kept falling forward, and eventually you were walking. Because of this mechanism that’s always trying to bring us to a state of equilibrium, of balance, we are more inclined or have more commitment to staying the same, rather than changing and continuing to grow. So that’s one of the big things we have to begin to move out of.

The other issue is, again, as I said in the beginning here, because to really go for the great in our life we would have to say no to a lot of the good, including a lot of good people. Including a lot of sincere requests that are good requests that deserve to be answered. It’s just not our job to answer them all.

There is no way you can do it. You cannot give to every charity. You cannot support every need in the world. You can’t help every hungry child or every scared animal or lost animal. You can’t help every person that asks for it. You just can’t. Not even Jesus could. Not even Mother Teresa could. Not even Martin Luther King could. Not even Gandhi could. There is a portion that is saved out for you. There is the ones, the people, the situations, the projects that you are uniquely designed to serve and to help and to bring your greatness to, and that’s what you have to begin to discover.

This puts you on a journey of real growth, real strength, real mastery, because, again, it puts up right up against our core shadows, our core wounds, our core fears of being seen in a negative way, being rejected, becoming unlovable, losing something, and ultimately dying. It’s really the deep fear. The truth is that less really is more. Doing a few things that are yours to do, that are the right things to do, doing a few things that are a must is much more productive, effective, than doing a bunch of things that are a maybe. As I’ve heard it put before, if it’s not a hell yes, it’s a no. Now, a caveat to that is sometimes even our hell yes is covered up by fear, fear of failure, fear of loss, etc. So it doesn’t feel like a hell yes. There is a yes there, but it’s a got a yes, but. So sometimes we have to clear away some of the debris and ask empowering questions, like if I was guaranteed to succeed, what’s my hell yes in my life? So we have to kind of clear away the dust and grit of the journey. Ultimately you’re looking for those hell yeses, or at least just a yes! The thing that you deeply resonate with the most, the thing you feel will most move the needle, and that doesn’t mean it’s going to always move the needle immediately. It means that overall it’s the most important high leverage thing you can be putting your time into.

In truth, most of the most important things are not urgent. As Stephen Covey talks about in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, there is the things that are not urgent, but important. That’s the most important category. That’s like dealing with your health, your spirituality, your personal growth, your relationships, before they become urgent. If you don’t deal with the important but not urgent, it becomes urgent and important. That’s the next category. Now you’re kind of always in this state of urgency, but it is important, and we do need to address that, because we have a lot of urgent and important things in our life, because we haven’t spent enough time in the important but not urgent category.

Then, because we get so stressed out or burned out, and it’s so much stuff, there is the next category we tend to slip into, which is the urgent but not important. So that’s everybody else’s agenda that isn’t really ours. Again, it might be important to them, so we’re not judging anybody. It’s just not ours to handle, and yet it has a sense of urgency, because they’re urgent. It’s all those emails. It’s those phone calls. It’s the child pulling on you while you’re on the phone and saying, Mommy, Mommy, I need this. Give me this. I need this.It’s urgent to the child, but it’s not urgent for you.

Then there’s the final category, if you get caught into that third category too much, now you’re really burnt out, and you just need to distract yourself and numb yourself, and so you move into not urgent, not important. You just check out. You just disconnect. You just pop a beer or two or six, and just flop on the couch and watch six hours of Ice Road Truckers, or whatever. Nothing wrong with that show. I’ve never actually watched it. Looks kind of funny. Whatever. Honey Boo Boo, whatever the case may be. The Kardashians. You just check out. It’s not important. It’s not urgent. You’re just so overwhelmed or burnt out you’ve got to check out.

That’s what happens along the spectrum when we haven’t taken the time to discover what is truly the thing or things we’re meant to do, the great, not just the good. The hell yes, the thing I must, not just the thing that’s a maybe. We have to be compassionate. We have to be patient, because there’s some unraveling that has to happen as we kind of work our way back to focusing most of our time and attention on the important but not urgent. There will still be urgent and important for a while, and maybe to a little extent forever, but it will become increasingly less. Then the other categories, urgent and not important, and not urgent, not important, they just become ultimately delegated, automated, or eliminated out of our life. So that we are only in the important but not urgent, and occasionally the urgent and important. We’re mostly on the hell yes, with a little bit of the urgently, oh my God, I have to. We want to be mostly on the I get to, but sometimes we have to focus on I have to.

Now, one way to begin to do this process is to actually make a list of everything you do and everything on your list that you think you have to do. Perhaps it’s the next months’ worth of things, and some of them are things you do all the time, and some of them are things you’re adding to your list over the next month. Look at that list, and start to identify, if I was guaranteed success, what are the few things that would be a hell yes? You can also do this, break it down, in terms of structures, which might be a little easier. You have several life structures, health, wealth, work, relationships, spiritual growth, personal development, service, and you can break down all these tasks into these categories. What are all the things you’re doing in the category of health? What are all the things you’re doing in the category of wealth, work, relationships, spiritual growth, personal development?

Now, personal development means things where you’re developing your personal skills and capacities like, learning to ride a bike, learning to play the guitar, learning to write a book, learning to become a coach, learning to grow a business. That’s personal development. It also is connected to work, but it’s not the actual work. It’s the development of that aspect of your persona. Okay? Then there’s service, and that is the area where you are giving of yourself philanthropically, or of service to the world. Sometimes these things connect. Your work ultimately can also be your service. You can be developing your personal development, being of service, and accomplishing your work all together, and that produces your wealth, etc. You see what I mean? Breaking them up into categories, and then putting all those to-dos, projects, tasks, within the right category gives you a cleaner snapshot of what you’re doing or not doing in those very critical categories.

Then, look at the categories, and of those categories, what are the two categories, I would say maximum three for now, to start. It doesn’t mean they’re not all important, but there’s always one or two or three that are really calling out to be developed. Rarely are all of them urgently needing to be developed, and what happens is that when you focus on the one or two or three that really matter, that are hell yeses, the ramifications, because it’s really holistic, it’s really one, it impacts the others. For example, some of them have higher leverage. If you work on your health and get into great physical shape, the energy you have, the blood circulation, it improves your thinking. You end up having more energy to do more work. You end up having better emotional state, and it improves your relationships. You end up having more clarity, and you’re able to be more creative and in your personal develop area. That’s a very high leverage category that if you don’t have a handle on it it almost always should be one of your main categories.

The second main category tends to be spiritual development, whatever that means to you, because when you don’t have a deep connection with who you really are, and why you’re alive, and your heart, and your spirit, everything else suffers. It’s like a branch trying to survive without being connected to the tree. It withers and dies. Developing a deep connection to your heart, to your spirit, to who you really are, what’s above the Oracle of Delphi, know thyself. Knowing yourself, getting in the best shape you Transcriptioncan, these are like almost always, if they’re not already on good momentum, should be two of the categories you’re focused on.

Then I would say the next most important one is relationships. You know the saying, community breeds immunity. We are relationship driven machines, relationship driven beings. The connection to yourself is first. The connection to your body is second, and then extending that connection to others is third. This is the path of health, of wholeness. When you’re disconnected from others, they’ve shown that many of the suicides, the depression, etc. are directly linked to people who had connections with family, community, or like in the army or whatever, and suddenly lose that bond, lose that connection and fall into depression and ultimately addiction, drugs, and even suicide. Also they’ve shown that when you have community you tend to heal faster and not get sick as often. Real authentic relationships is, again, super high leverage. When you’re in love, you can conquer the world.

So when you are feeling great about yourself, feeling great about your body, and feeling loved and loving, you’re a superstar. You’re able to rock the world. That’s why those are the three probably most important categories. As I said, they’re all critical, because each one is necessary to a whole person, but each one that extends, so from there the next level is work, your right work in the world. If you’ve got all these things, but you’re not producing the fruit of your kind, you will stagnate, and then it will back up and start to suffer all the other branches of your life. So you have to then move to the next level, work, and on and on this goes. So you can look at this, and you can actually decide for yourself what are the areas that are most critical? What are the areas that would move the needle most?

Then within those one or two or three, let’s say two or three areas, you look at the two or three activities. Maybe it’s a project or some tasks that you then identify as your hell yes, as the must, not the maybe, as the great, not just the good. For example, in the area of health, maybe you’re taking yoga, you’re working out at the gym, you are running. Maybe you’re doing a bunch of things, and you’re spending two hours a day on your health, and it’s not necessary. Maybe if you just spent a full hour in one area that would actually give you the greatest leverage. You might discover you’re not spending much time at all there, and meanwhile you’re spending all this time at work, or all this time trying to make money, or all this time trying to put out fires in relationships, and that area is sacrificed, is suffering. You want to find, what’s the one thing I could do that is really a must, that’s really a hell yes, that would really give me a lot of leverage, the great, not just the good? So you identify that.

You might notice that there’s some things you can let go of within that category that is not necessary, and then the area, again, of relationships, maybe you’re trying to keep up 10 different friendships and 10 different colleagueships, and you’re networking, and always thinking you got to keep the network going. All this energy, and meanwhile your relationship with your wife is suffering, or your relationship with your children is not as joyful and thriving, and when you look at all these things, you realize it’s a good idea to keep up my network. It’s a good idea to keep being a good friend to all my friends, but what’s the great? What’s the must? If I could have really awesome relationship with my children, or with my best friend, or with this one best friend, or with my partner, maybe it’s my child, my partner, and my best friend. Let me, instead of trying to keep relationships going with 20 people, let me really focus on making great relationships with these three people. That doesn’t mean you just completely cut yourself off from all these people, however it might in some cases, if you really look at it.

You might realize you’re operating from a place of fear, a fear of missing out, a fear of feeling bad, of being guilty, of creating conflict, of getting kicked out of that club, or not being able to get another client because of it. So you want to notice when you’re being moved by fear, by a shadow, a compulsive behavior, versus being pulled by passion and vision and inspiration. If it’s being moved by fear, you want to look and see what is the reason why? If it’s not something that really adds true value to your life, that there’s something else that’s much more valuable. It’s not just, well the mother’s will think I’m a bad mother if I don’t go to every PTA meeting, or if I don’t go to the student car washes every time, or bake the pies or whatever. You’re like, I’m only doing this because I don’t want to look bad. I’m only doing this because I don’t want them to not like me, but I don’t really want to do it. It’s not really the thing I bring the most value to or the thing I can bring the greatest level of joy and love and passion and capacity for my children. So what would be that thing? You see?

As you break down this list, you want to just go through the list as an exercise, and discover what are your reasons for doing everything you do? Start to notice there are certain patterns that keep recurring. I’m doing this so I don’t look bad. I’m doing this so I don’t feel guilty. I’m doing this so I don’t feel shame. I’m doing this so I don’t lose the job or lose the opportunity. I’m doing this so that that person doesn’t think I’m selfish or a bad mom or a bad parent. I’m doing this because I don’t want to lose. I’m doing this because I’m afraid. Then notice also, what do I really want to do? This can even be another list of the things you really want to do, but you’re not doing. Then you can make a list, I’m not doing this because I’m afraid. You can start to really see what are some of the core patterns driving you. The more you see it, an expanded awareness gives you actual real choice and begins the process of real change.

Make the list. Break it down into these categories: health, wealth, work, relationship, spirituality, personal growth or personal development, and service. Identify within that list what are all the reasons why you’re doing it, so you can understand your patterns, and then what are the two or three categories that are a must, not a maybe, that are a hell yes, not just a maybe. Then within those categories, identify the two or three most important things that would really take your life to the next level, or that area to the next level, that are passionate, that are a yes, that are a must. Now organize that into your plan. Begin the process of organizing out of your plan all of these other commitments, all of these other things, to the extent that you can, and the ones you can’t, immediately begin the journey or the process of renegotiating those commitments, so that you can begin to get them off your list and off your plan. So that your plan progressively reflects who you are in the deepest core, your deepest yes, your deepest passion, your hell yes, your musts, the great, not just the good, and it feels more and more authentic and congruent. Now you’ve got a plan, a real plan that if you don’t already know what your bigger vision is, it’s going to start to tune your more into it.

That’s why really doing the work on vision is so important, because if you don’t know where you’re going, every road will take you there, which means you could go down every road, and you’re just going to be lost. Knowing really where you want to go, like where do you really want to go with your family, with your relationships, with your body, with your wealth, with your life and your commitment and your contribution? Where do you really want to go at the end of the year? Where do you really want to go at the end of five years? Where do you really want to be at the end of a life? Then reverse engineer that back as a template, as a North Star, as a compass. If that’s where I really want to go, am I heading in that direction? If the things I’m doing and that are on my to-do list and my plan are not, guess where they have to go? Somewhere else.

Now you identify, and you start to organize this plan, and then, and don’t freak out, you have to put it on your schedule. Some of you have full schedules, and that’s not a problem. Your problem is just the things on your schedule are keeping you busy, but they’re not necessarily making you productive. For those others of you, heart-centered, creatively-minded people, you don’t tend to have a real schedule or real plan. You just kind of go with the flow, but, as I often say, if you just go with the flow, you’re going to probably end up going over a waterfall and crashing into the rocks below, or getting stuck in some branches or brambles or crashing into a rock. Going with the flow isn’t a good idea, because you don’t know what flow you’re going with, until you do know. It’s go with the flow, but don’t forget to row. Row, row, flow, flow, row, row, flow, flow. For you people that love to flow, don’t forget to row.

How do you know where to row? You’ve got to know where you’re going. Got to know where to go before you know where to row. I feel like I’m going to start breaking into a rap here. You’ve got to have a plan. You’ve got to have a vision. Then you’ve got to put it on your schedule. Then you do it. That’s a whole other topic. There’s other podcasts that talk about why we don’t do what we’ve committed to, the value of commitment. It’s beyond the scope of this. This is more than enough to play with, and it’s so important, because this is one of the biggest questions. What should I do? Out of all the choices and options, what should I do? What’s the right thing, the right direction, the best thing, the thing that will really move my life, move the needle, take things to the next level?

Listen to this again. Take notes, and follow the recipe. Again, if you want to go deeper into vision, into understanding commitment and planning, go through the archives of the podcast and check those out as well. While we’re talking about that, if you haven’t already signed up for the podcast, sign up. It’s free. You get access to about a hundred free trainings. I’m adding new ones every week, and it’s an invaluable resource. You can download all of them right away so they’re in your library, and that way as we archive them, which we are doing on an ongoing basis, I think every week, as a matter of fact, at least one or two of them gets archived, and we’re eventually going to archive a whole bunch of them. So register, download all of them. Now you own them. Listen, and apply. Choose at least one thing you’ll do about this today. Action has power.

I hope this has served you in getting clearer on what you should do. If you want to have even more support, you can go to DerekRydall.com. You can also check out my Facebook page. You can go to LawofEmergence.com and download a free mini ecourse on the Law of Emergence. If you want to grab my book Emergence, the bestseller, you can also go to MyEmergenceBook, click on the Amazon or Barnes and Noble button, buy it through there, and then leave your information, and we’re going to give you a bunch of bonuses to help you really apply it and get real world results. Again, I truly love and appreciate you for showing up, not just showing up for me, but showing up for you, because as you show up for you, you come alive, and what the world is looking for is people who have come alive. Until next time, remember to live authentically, to love unconditionally, and to follow your destiny. Take care, everyone.

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