On December 11, 2016, I challenged you to read a book on personal development and to complete every exercise in the book. I shared with you my answers to some of the exercises in a book titled “Planning for Success: Living Your Dream by Dr. Mark Chironna. I didn’t pick this book for any special reason, it was just the one I was reading at the time.
In this post, I share my answers to the second series of questions. It is good to reflect on the progress you make in the pursuit of your dream! The questions from the book are in bold.
Note the areas in which you approach life with intentionality. How have the outcomes in these areas surpassed results elsewhere? When it comes to my work life, I have very intentionally slipped out of the rat race. When our per-diem OT left, I immediately recognized the opportunity to leave full-time work behind me.
I sketched out a plan that I thought would work, looked at the pros and cons and took a giant leap of faith that everything would work out. And it has! I intentionally stepped away from full-time work and a full-time paycheck. I intentionally reduced my expenses, eliminated my debt and pursued other ways to earn money doing activities I enjoy. This has led to a massive increase in my happiness. No where else in my life have I had results that compare to this.
Reflect on the things about which you are most passionate. How has this passion increased initiative? I am not sure I know what I am passionate about other than taking control of my life by deliberately choosing health, wealth and happiness. This led me to create this blog which requires effort and follow through. It led me to a new work routine that makes me happy! I am in the driver’s seat of my life and that is important to me. I love gardening and being outside. I have turned this into a side job which helps me reach my financial goals. It also helps me to stay in shape! I am at the point in my life where I would like to develop new passions to propel me in the direction of new opportunities.
What are the top 3 values governing your life and how do these values help you prosper and/or benefit others. After much deliberation, I decided the top 3 values that govern my life are happiness, financial independence and health. By prioritizing these 3 things, I feel like I am dependent on no one which helps me prosper and does not drain others. Happiness is contagious which obviously benefits all! I also listed compassion, fairness, responsibility, empathy and authenticity as values that govern my life. These values really do govern my life and make me – well me!
List specific examples in which your ability to think, act, and get results have combined with your human capital (education, total life experience, talents) to produce favorable outcomes. I am the type of Occupational Therapist that believes people who are on the fence in terms of whether they can succeed at home (vs a nursing home placement) deserve the opportunity to try. I am an advocate for my patients who want to go home even when the odds are not in their favor.
I developed this blog to share what has worked for me in terms of choosing health, wealth and happiness to live life on my terms. It has helped to give me a voice to share my opinion, which in the past I pretty much kept to myself.
I think thru taking my quiet time and being open to my AHA moments, I am more prepared to recognize opportunities that present themselves. I have learned to live with less money, less belongings, even less safety and this places me in a good position where I can more readily so NO to things I do not want to do and to be able to say YES when unique opportunities arise.
In what specific beneficial ways have you put your life volume (capacity to contain and pour out what you have: knowledge, ideas, hope, enthusiasm) to good use? I have developed the skills to create decent training material and to present it in a manner that fosters enthusiasm to make positive change. I have the ability to get along with most people and can get results where other people struggle. In this blog, I share what I have learned as well as my hopes, goals and difficulties in order that others can take away anything that might help them.
List your most pronounced aspects of life texture (authenticity, accessibility, emotional honesty, sensitivity). How have they enhanced your relationships and life outcomes overall? I have issues! Just ask my friends or my honey! Read about them here! I think these issues help me understand what others are feeling and give me empathy. This helps me tremendously in my role as an Occupational Therapist. It makes me a better friend and partner. I have a strong sense of personal responsibility and fairness and this makes me a better person.
Name some positive characteristics others see in you. How have aspects of your life light encouraged and strengthened them? This is a tough one. I asked one of my best friends but she just said I was awesome. She even said this after reading my blog which encouraged her to quit her job in order to increase time with her family and to maintain her sanity. If my words had that kind of impact on just one person – well I think I am doing something worthwhile.
Identify any areas of life shadow (blind spots, negative attitudes, defensiveness, recurring response patterns) and describe how these negatives can become stepping stones to your future? I think I am too comfortable in my comfort zone. I am a worrier and this worries me. I am afraid of being judgmental of others. I can be defensive when challenged and this closes me off from growing. I think these can all become less of a barrier just by recognizing them and checking in with myself to see if they are holding me back.
I think a quick summary of what I learned from these exercises is in order!
Things I should keep doing
- Daily quiet time
- Recognize my AHA moments
- Sculpting my day
- Using positive mantras
- Drinking smoothies
- Tracking my progress
- Writing this blog
- Promoting this blog
Things I should stop doing
- Listening to my inner negative voice
- Listening to my inner judgmental voice
- Staying in my comfort zone
Things I should keep in mind
- Ways to use my training development and presentation skills
- My friends rock
- The next opportunity is just around the corner and I need to be open to it when it presents itself
Doing these exercises help me on my journey to figure myself out. Encouraging you to do them is my way of throwing you another life-preserver!
I don’t know if anyone took me up on my challenge from December 11th to read a book on personal development and to complete the exercises.
If you did, I am willing to bet you don’t regret it.