After a disappointing 20s and a heartbreaking 30s, I’m out to have the best decade of my life. I’ve studied the past and applied what I’ve learned to how I’m directing my future. I’m following five tenets that have changed and evolved to this point including connecting and engaging with relationships, being authentic without sacrifice, accepting love with grace, experiencing deeply, and going public.
I am less than a week away from another completed solar trip and so its time to take stock and revisit my 40s manifesto.
Connecting and engaging in relationships has been a powerful vehicle for transformation. I have reached out and been true and open about my feelings. This has led me to meet many new people. I’ve been authentic and found that people are far more likely to love my true self – even if I’m not perfect. I’ve had many instances where people have expressed love and care and I’ve been open to accepting this although it is a bit strange. I’ve experienced deeply, always attempting to drop the future and the past and let the present moment simply flow through me, careful not to try and hold on too tight. And I’ve begun to go public. I’ve converted this blog to the flagship site for my coaching business, I’ve become a yoga instructor, and deepened my leadership.
There is something else that I’ve come across… a fear. I’ve played it really safe. Careerwise, I’ve truly only had three jobs my entire life. While this expresses a value of commitment, it also is a signal that I am fearful of failing. And so I contemplate this concept in my life. I’ve certainly had failures, but often the fear of failing is what caused me to fail because I gave up not being able to face the inevitable failure. I walked away from a promising music career because I was afraid of failing. I caused havoc in my relationships by being afraid to change and ultimately failing to fail.
I now work with a life coach and have had many breakthroughs. However, one of the most significant is how I have built my life around safety and avoiding failure. As a concept, I see clearly that failure is how we learn “hands-on”. Even the failures that I’ve caused in fear of failure I’ve learned from. I’ve been terrified of public mockery, being seen as something less than perfect (enneagram 1). All of this is based on FEAR OF FAILURE, but not anything with any substance or basis in reality. And truly, this has governed the path that leads me to focus on the tenets of my manifesto.
Why would I not CONNECT & ENGAGE in relationships? Why would I NOT BE AUTHENTIC? Why would I NOT ACCEPT LOVE? And why would I not EXPERIENCE DEEPLY or GO PUBLIC?
The Answer: FEAR of FAILURE.
What is Possible?
With failure reassigned as a teacher, what is possible? The process often goes – idea-fear-funeral. The desired process is – idea-failure-learning-growth.
What if the idea never dies, but is explored until it is realized? What if failure was only another celebration and not something that locked up my heart, mind, and body?
What if I pursued exactly what I wanted and was not swayed by the fear I might not achieve it?
I know goals are only truly important in creating a lens to see life through. This has been disorienting in the past. I’ve achieved goals only to find… it was depressing, disappointing, and not what I thought it would be. Instead, the journey to the goal was the important part. This was often the part I tried to skip or put as little effort into as possible, citing efficiency and intelligence.
What if we weren’t scared to have that conversation with your boss or partner?
What if you did sign up for that marathon and did not hit your time or even finish?
What if you did reach out to that person that you miss?
What if you apologized?
What if you stood up for what you believed?
What if you did speak/perform/appear publicly?
And what if, when you fell short and experienced your “FAILURE”, you celebrated?!
What if you let FAILURE be a teacher?
It’s a cliche. I’ve learned, especially this year, that cliches are cliches for a reason. They are so obviously true, that they are hard to grasp and fully understand without firsthand experience.
Hal Elrod, the author of the Miracle Equation, tells us simply that this equation to make miracles happen in our life is simply a matter of extraordinary effort and unwavering faith. As a matter of fact, all of the successes we have arise from this equation.
And so I add a sixth tenet, but due to its overarching nature, it’s now the first…
I Will Pursue My Dreams Fearlessly, Embracing Failure As A Teacher
What will I fail at? How will this change the direction of my life?
The answer to these questions will have a dramatic influence on the remainder of my decade.
A Reorienting of the Manifesto Tenets
With the addition of the first tenet, I will enable myself to learn more deeply. Where that learning happens, so does life.
With the second, I will delve into relationships. I will connect and explore their importance and mystery.
The authenticism described in number three will be the glue that holds it all together.
For number four, I’ve added the word humility. This is to protect my ego from taking over and inflating my sense of self. When we make changes, sometimes we go from one extreme to the other. Gluttony to asceticism, introversion to extraversion. This will help with balance.
For number five, I’ll continue to explore, enjoy, and celebrate the richness of the human experience.
And for number six, I’ll continue to share my experience, knowledge, and wisdom with those who will hear it…
For that… I am grateful. Thank you for reading…