How to build your life on a soulful foundation
- I'm too tired to work on my novel.
- I inherited "start big projects and then put off finishing them for weeks" genes from my dad.
- I don't know where to start with my dream business, so I'll start later.
These are all examples of bullshit excuses we tell ourselves when we have no direction, no foundation. No soulful foundation. More specifically, they're some of the excuses I used to tell myself when my own life was just a mounting clusterf*ck and my wild dreams were both way too wild and way too much a dream for me to ever realize them. Or at least, that's what I thought then.
I struggled for years to make my life mean something, and when I kept sinking further and further into the morass, I started to think that it was all out of my hands.
I would never pay off my debt.
I would never be happy in a relationship.
I would never finish my novel.
How often have you settled for less than what you want? Or—let's be real—for what you need to be truly alive?
Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate. — Carl Jung
How often have you thought the same thing?
I'll bet that the thought has settled into your mind at least a couple times. Times when you felt so far from reaching your dreams, when you thought you'd never amount to more than you are in that moment. It sucks. Those thoughts really, truly suck.
These little worries keep you from being present in what's important — in accomplishing the things that matter most to you.
We all have these problems sometimes. Otherwise, Pinterest wouldn't be so popular. We collect hundreds of "Pin now, use later" pins, and what we're really doing is distracting ourselves from completing one good task by half-starting fourteen.
Sometimes you have to slap yourself and say, 'What are you doing?! Get your act together!'
Your life needs a soulful foundation.
Yeah, duh, you're probably thinking. Don't dismiss it. This isn't some vague, snapped advice from your long-suffering parents who are ready to be empty-nesters. This is the very foundation of living a meaningful life.
That's the keyword: meaningful.
If I may quote John Green: What is the point of being alive if you don't at least try to do something remarkable?
That 'something remarkable' you do is the foundation of your path. It's the path you draw for yourself so that you can reach that end goal, that Magnum Opus, or even that Mini Opus.
If you want to accomplish something, anything this lifetime, you need to consciously and soulfully establish your foundation so that you can consciously and soulfully maintain a direction.
If you're anything like I was, you're probably wondering how to do that. I've got some things I want you to think about that will help you figure out what the foundation for your life will be centered on.
How do I know when I have this magical foundation?
- Wake up each day knowing what you need to do?
- Wake up each day knowing where you want to be?
- Not second-guess your decisions?
- Live free of day-to-day overwhelm and decision fatigue?
- Feel confident with the progress you're making?
- Feel excited by both today and your future?
If you didn't answer Yes to those, your foundation is shaky.
Maybe you don't know what your dream life looks like just yet, and that's okay. Grand ideas are often just that: grand + ideas. You don't need to box yourself into a cut-and-dry life-path to have soulful foundation. You can get there without a GPS. It helps to have some more-than-vague ideas, though.
Things to think about for your life's foundation:
- What does your dream life look life? Where do you live?
- Do you laugh a lot, relax a lot, sleep a lot? Do you Netflix all day?
- Do you play tennis every morning? What do you fill your afternoons with? What would be a perfect week?
- What are your biggest worries in your dream life? What worries are well in the past?
- Who are you with? Do you travel with them, work with them, play League of Legends with them?
It's a good idea to write your answers to these questions down. Not only will it give you a visual reminder of your deepest wants and needs, it will also allow you to see patterns in your life and get all of those swirling thoughts out of your head and onto paper. It's much easier to manage a whirlwind of thoughts on paper than in our heads. ;)
How should you get these thoughts out?
Try a Mind Map. They're fun and easy:
- Starting with your central idea, listen to your gut and write down your dreams. They can be vague and foggy, they can be absolutely precise. Wherever you are in your path, it's fine.
- Now, branch out from your main idea with the main themes that make up that idea
- Each of those themes get their own branches - just keep adding until you run out of things to say!
The next question is where and how to start. That's the beauty of mind maps. Questions like "How do I start?" seem to magically come into focus when we let our brains make the connections they want to make.
The answers that mind mapping provide are so basic and yet so foundational:
- Do something.
- Do anything.
- Listen to your gut.
You don't have to use a mind map, but you do need to do it. This is the first step. Shut your shit off and start writing. Let your brain make the connections it wants to make. This is your Do Something. It's your Listen to Your Gut. And it works.
Take the first step.
You don't need a worksheet for this one. Any blank piece of paper will do. Don't over think things. Just spit everything out onto the page and find the relationships among the items later — or just let your brain do it for you. Let it run.
Find your soulful foundation.
Sometimes, it's hard to see the trees because there's so f*cking much forest.
I'm so excited to announce that I've got some exciting things coming to help you create your legacy, and we're starting with a crash course on clearing the bullsh*t from your life so you can get your headspace right. Sign up below for my FREE email course: 7 Days to Inner Alchemy.
You'll also get on the VIP list for my upcoming course Alchemy Brain. It's a brand new course coming later this summer for overwhelmed, creative babes who know they have a masterpiece inside them and need the help getting their life together so they can actually create it.
Sound like you? I knew it! Get on the list and get your free 7 Days to Inner Alchemy email course now!