Category Archives for "LNP Magazine"

multipotentialites are coming

Rise of the Multipotentialite Blogazine

Rise of the Multipotentialite! Blogazine

The economy is completely changing. Every year there are less full time jobs and more people doing freelance work. These freelancers put together careers that look anything but traditional. A little coaching here, a little UX design there, a little music making over here. We find a way to move through this world as best we can. These are the Multipotentialites. It's like the Renaissance people of the digital age. 

It's not always easy, and this way of being is not going anywhere. It's only going to increase. So prepare yourself for your own multipotentialism, or if you are already working this way, use our tips to rise, friend, rise! 

Read about: 

  • Chris's explanation of where the term Multipotentialite came from and what economic forces are creating this 
  • Hilary's article on all the hats she wears and how she puts them together in an integrated way
  • David's call to notice that everything is energy, even our entrepreneurial ventures, and managing our energy is the key to our progress

GO TO THE BLOGAZINE ON MEDIUM!

Rise From Ashes Blogazine

Rise From Ashes Blogazine

This blogazine issue is all about redemption. It's about falling down and getting back up. 

We all fall down. When kids learn to walk falling down is part of the process. They trip, they fall. They learn. We adults are the same. We are learning to walk the path of our Soul, and we trip many times, we learn, we get back up. Because the seed of our evolution is planted deep inside us. It feels great to keep going.  

Read about: 

  • Hilary's story of switching from wanting to be a nun to finding yourself
  • How letting my life fall apart and quitting everything for 3 months was one of the best decisions I ever made
  • A hilarious post from Arnaud about bumping into failure again and again, to the metaphor of a Rocky movie 
  • Chris's experience going through an arduous emotional hero's journey in real life. 

GO TO THE BLOGAZINE ON MEDIUM!

Strategies of Love Blogazine

Strategies of Love Blogazine

This is our second blogazine issue! We've got articles about using Love as a purposeful strategy to create the life we want. We've even got a poem. 

Read about: 

  • Recovering from Catholicism and incorporating it in an updated spirituality
  • How to use Self-compassion to change your experience
  • A hilarious post from Arnaud about transforming relationships
  • Tapping into the energy of love to morph reality

GO TO THE BLOGAZINE ON MEDIUM!

Preparing a Magic 2018

Preparing a Magic 2018

This is the first issue of a collaborative blog that we created together.  It's a little bit like a magazine. Hence our term for it - the blogazine. 

[Update - all issues after this one are hosted on Love and Profit's Medium publication.]

This issue is all about practices we can use to have a great year. 

This issue makes counterintuitive points about goalsperfectionismpeopleintentionshappiness, and reading too much. Enjoy 2018.

Brought to you by the amazing Meredith WaltersGretchen DiehlArnaud MathieuChris Hardy, and David Papa

Issue Articles

1

People: the Everlasting Magic

PEOPLE: The Everlasting magic

Arnaud Mathieu
I'm a music producer turned (happy) office worker. I want to help creators be in the Now and enjoy the magic of people... everything I forgot to do during my Music Biz years.

8 January 2018  |  6 minute read

Sometimes, I feel like I'm immune to Magic.

Crazy, impossible stuff turns reality every day and, if I notice it at all, I just shrug and continue my day as if it's completely normal.

I can learn anything any time without going anywhere for free; I can have any (good) project funded by strangers; there are cars that don't need gas, nor drivers and skateboards that don't need pushing. Hell, I can print OBJECTS OUT OF THIN AIR, isn't it magic enough? Yet it takes me as little as a coffee break to become aware of it, integrate the news, joke about it... and forget that it is indeed Magic.

But you know what never ceases to feel amazingly out of this world? People. Human interaction. Exchange & communication. Every. Time.

The other day, I'm filling the trunk of my car (which needs gas and a driver) when I see a guy walking toward me while talking angrily to himself. My instinct kicks in and I prepare myself for some sort of confrontation. My dog instinct kicks in and he runs toward the stranger... to play with him. That's when I watch the 30-something drunkard turn into a happy little boy who likes dogs. His anger is gone, he's smiling, petting Artika & having a good time. After a moment (I'm still putting Xmas presents in my trunk), he looks at me and tells me "Mate hezkeho pejska!" (Czech for "You have a nice dog"). I thank him and wish Merry Christmas. He says something like 'You too, Bro" and leaves.

Going from battle-mode to brotherhood in such a short time feels amazing, my head is almost spinning and I'm all pumped up... but the REAL magic is that Human interaction still has this effect on me after 33 years. I'm pretty sure that similar stories will warm my heart when I'm 64.

How to prepare a magic 2018? Put people and good human interaction at the core of your year. Here are 3 methods I had good results with and plan to do more of.

I. Shoes swapping

I have this colleague who's a complete douchebag.
He probably stole some company equipment, he's not taking responsibility for his failures, he writes angry e-mails (where he spells 'separate', 'seperate') and he's generally a dick (maybe you have the same in your office).

I can blame him (as I just did), continue with this "he's such a douchebag" story and use it to make myself shine in comparison. Most colleagues would agree with me and we'd bond over our mutual dislike of this guy (let's call him Bob)... Or I can remember Wendy Mass' wise words and put myself in his shoes.

Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.

- Wendy Mass.  

Bob might have family problems, health issues or past trauma and maybe his way of dealing with this is... well being a douchebag. Actually, I can even remember a few occurrences where he actually did or said something nice. Nobody's a pure monster but we're all people.

Still, he often acts as a douche and it's hard to empathize. 

My technic is therefore to:

  • picture Bob's inner child (a scared little boy in a fat adult body) which helps me feeling sorry for him; 
  • picture my Son, how he does stupid stuff when he's angry and how I can pardon and deal with it calmly thanks to Love;
  • put the 2 pictures next to each other.

Then, it's pretty clear that Bob's douchebagness is a cry for help. Just like my Son's mistakes, it's simply something he's not able to express in another way.

You can use this technic everytime somebody pisses you off, even mildly: see their inner child, bring the memory of someone you love deeply and use the love for the later to deal with the former.

Maybe 2018 will be the year Bob and I become friends or discover common interests. 

Gee, that'd be Magic.

2. Take a break

There are times when I feel lonely and crave for human interaction. 

I'd talk about anything with anyone and it obsesses me until Life put someone directly on my path to actually have a chat. I assume that's a pretty standard feeling, maybe you experienced it sometimes.

But here's the thing: in those moments, I also reject people who'd actually like to interact.

Say the shop assistant is more communicative than usual, or a colleague (not Bob) wants to talk when I'm busy or a friend starts chatting on Facebook as I begin watching Jessica Jones season 1 finale... I'd dodge and avoid the very exchange I crave.

The solution to this "I feel lonely/leave me alone" paradox is to take a break. I believe very few situations prevent us from taking a few minutes to communicate. Being in a shop, at work or on Facebook are not one of those.

Once I went to talk to Bob (apparently the star of this post) and he shut me down, gazing at his computer screen and dropping short answers. I felt unwelcomed, rejected, went away, tried my best to shoe swap and failed ("Bob is such a douche!").

A few weeks later, however, another colleague (Beard) came to chat a bit. I wanted to focus on what I was doing so I didn't elaborate on my answers and kept coming back to my computer screen... until I realized I was being a Bob and needed to take a break.

I put my pc on pause and made eye-contact with Beard. We took a coffee, talked about Queen and I learned that their bassist is named John Deacon, comes from funk (not hard rock like the rest of the band) and actually wrote "Another one bites the dust." 

I felt refreshed and pumped coming back to the workstation 10 minutes later. I would have missed that if I'd just continue the daily grind.

How many other great exchange did I miss cause I wasn't ready to take a break? How many did You?

3. Everybody's cool

I used to think that not everybody was cool. 

I'd feel like I was losing my time if I wasn't talking to the hottest lady, the most door-opening client or the most influential person in the company.

Of course, that's complete bullshit or rather an ineffective self-told story and I'm glad I got rid of it because ditching it brought me the biggest gig I ever had as a video game composer.

In 2013 I launched my first website and became serious about being a freelance music maker. I wasn't sure where to start so I chose the hard path (I'm not proud of it): I spent hours mapping the VG companies in the Czech Republic, cold-contacting them, following-up ad nauseam ... and got to close to no results. 


​During my research, I stumbled upon Kubatko, a fellow VG composer whose work I really enjoyed. I mailed to let him know, he answered, we chit-chat and I forgot about the exchange.

Years later, I was invited by Bohemia Interactive (makers of Arma & Day-Z) to score a new project. It resulted in a 2-year collaboration under very good conditions both creatively and financially.

When I asked why they contacted me they said that they usually work with Kubatko who was busy and recommended me.

58 companies contacted individually and the biggest gig comes from the 1 time I reached out for the sake of human interaction. Isn't it magic?

Everybody's cool. Don't neglect anybody.

The cleaning lady shares your passion for anime, the chatty shop assistant wants you as the drummer of his new post-punk band and your fellow composer will get you bigger gigs than actual clients.

Hell, you're reading this very article because I choose to take some time away from my work to show my music studio to David. I had no business plan in mind, I just wanted to spend some good time with a friend and, sure enough, the Magic happened and I get to write for this awesome magazine!

In 2018...

...I want to learn new skills (Javascript, Russian, maybe something completely different), to get better at parkour, longboard, and piano, to write more articles and put my online presence in order... But more than anything, I want People! 

I want to have a great time with my wife and kids, stay in touch with my family and friends, make new ones and enjoy all the others small interactions that make our life magical ... when we allow it.

Happy new year, everybody and let me know in the comment section, which magical experience you had while investing in People!

About the Author Arnaud Mathieu

I spent about 16 years running after an elusive chimera named “I want to be a Rock Star”. In 2014 I stopped running, started walking I've been enjoying every step ever since. I write and talk about the making and promotion of Music (my primary art), Peace of mind, Creativity and their Love Affair.


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3 Steps to a Magical 2018

3 steps to a Magical 2018

Chris Hardy 
I'm a coach. Let me guide you to creating a magical 2018 in 3 simple steps.
January 2018  |  11 minute read

2018 is going to be magical. I can feel it.

2018 is going to be magical. I can feel it.

In this article I share with you three tools or ideas you can use to create a magical 2018. I then invite you to join me in a webinar planned for 28th January where we’ll dive deeper into you creating your best year ever!

There three ideas are:

  1. Why reviewing the worst bits of 2017 is important if you are to fully embrace the coming year.
  2. How to utilise the wintry inward turn as a moment to plant seeds and soak up the magic at this time of year.
  3. Simplifying and turbo-charging next year by setting a single word as your intention.

In this article I share with you three tools or ideas you can use to create a magical 2018. I then invite you to join me in a webinar planned for 28th January where we’ll dive deeper into you creating your best year ever!


There three ideas are:


  1. Why reviewing the worst bits of 2017 is important if you are to fully embrace the coming year.
  2. How to utilise the wintry inward turn as a moment to plant seeds and soak up the magic at this time of year.
  3. Simplifying and turbo-charging next year by setting a single word as your intention.


And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it.. 

- Roald Dahl.  

As the sap falls in the trees around us we’re naturally inclined to turn inwards, to slow down, to nurture ourselves and our roots.

Most of the time we live in a continual ‘ON’ mode. Slowing down, reflecting on the past, re-setting, relaxing, being dark, inward and still - these are totally opposed to the general thrust of our culture.

And yet it’s precisely this energy of reflection and rest that is fundamental to all successful creation. 

If you want 2018 to be your greatest year yet then make sure you are prepared. This means switching off, letting your sap fall, nurturing your roots, reflecting and learning from last year. By being inwardly focused at this time of year and you are setting the foundations for a magical and powerful 2018.

Now is a time for dreaming, for setting intentions and for putting your wishes out there into the universe. A time for praying, for nurturing your roots, a time for personal rituals of letting go of 2017 and for gently visioning and outlining 2018. 

Let me guide you in this process. Feel free to use these ideas in whatever way feels most useful to you.

As the sap falls in the trees around us we’re naturally inclined to turn inwards, to slow down, to nurture ourselves and our roots.


Most of the time we live in a continual ‘ON’ mode. Slowing down, reflecting on the past, re-setting, relaxing, being dark, inward and still - these are totally opposed to the general thrust of our culture.


And yet it’s precisely this energy of reflection and rest that is fundamental to all successful creation. 


If you want 2018 to be your greatest year yet then make sure you are prepared. This means switching off, letting your sap fall, nurturing your roots, reflecting and learning from last year. By being inwardly focused at this time of year and you are setting the foundations for a magical and powerful 2018.


Now is a time for dreaming, for setting intentions and for putting your wishes out there into the universe. A time for praying, for nurturing your roots, a time for personal rituals of letting go of 2017 and for gently visioning and outlining 2018. 


Let me guide you in this process. Feel free to use these ideas in whatever way feels most useful to you.


Tool 1: Review the Worst Bits of 2017

Tool 1: Review the Worst Bits of 2017


What were the worst bits of 2017 for you? 

Why think about that (I hear you ask...)!?

Because it’s through those bad bits that you’ve grown and developed. It’s through the challenges that we face, the struggles and the difficulties, that we become more of our best self, that we become fuller versions of ourselves, more complete, more satisfied and more awesome.

A tree grows stronger the more storms it weathers.

Same with humans.

Recently I had a powerful sense of doubt and insecurity coursing through my body. Everything looked difficult. My relationships, my work, my creative expression, my friendships. It was totally unusual for me and I couldn’t get to the bottom of it for a few weeks.

Through focusing in on this ‘bad bit’, the feelings of fear and doubt and the challenge it was bringing me, I did a number of things: turned to my coaches and support network, wrote a lot in my journal, did ‘The Work’ of Byron Katie to discover hidden and non-useful thoughts.

The challenge led me to do this deep inner personal work. Through that process I uncovered something incredibly important and powerful.

A realisation that I had a story deep inside me that said:

“Being in 100% integrity is not safe.”

Holy crap!! 

When I could see that I took immediate action. Delving into the memories and stories that had created this, getting them out in the light, releasing the fear, embodying my truth and making clear and exciting plans for 2018 that are powerful and authentic and in integrity with my deepest truth.

This was one of my moments of doubt and fear that 2017 bought for me. The resulting goodness of going THROUGH that doubt feels like golden wisdom.

By reflecting on my ‘worst bits’ (of which this was one) I acknowledge the learning and insights developed, the action I took to get there, and the changes I’m committed to making in the coming year.

Reflect on this for a moment for yourself: 

What were the three biggest challenges you faced in 2017 and more importantly: What did you learn by going through those challenges?

And then crystallise out that learning and commit to taking it into 2018 with you.

Share below or with me what your worst bits were. Let’s have them out in the light. And then also share your learning and what you’re committing to taking into 2018. Just the process of writing out those commitments will deepen their potential impact in your life.

Here’s a video giving you a little more nuance and understanding of this:

What were the worst bits of 2017 for you? 


Why think about that (I hear you ask...)!?


Because it’s through those bad bits that you’ve grown and developed. It’s through the challenges that we face, the struggles and the difficulties, that we become more of our best self, that we become fuller versions of ourselves, more complete, more satisfied and more awesome.


A tree grows stronger the more storms it weathers.


Same with humans.


Recently I had a powerful sense of doubt and insecurity coursing through my body. Everything looked difficult. My relationships, my work, my creative expression, my friendships. It was totally unusual for me and I couldn’t get to the bottom of it for a few weeks.


Through focusing in on this ‘bad bit’, the feelings of fear and doubt and the challenge it was bringing me, I did a number of things: turned to my coaches and support network, wrote a lot in my journal, did ‘The Work’ of Byron Katie to discover hidden and non-useful thoughts.


The challenge led me to do this deep inner personal work. Through that process I uncovered something incredibly important and powerful.


A realisation that I had a story deep inside me that said:


“Being in 100% integrity is not safe.”


Holy crap!! 


When I could see that I took immediate action. Delving into the memories and stories that had created this, getting them out in the light, releasing the fear, embodying my truth and making clear and exciting plans for 2018 that are powerful and authentic and in integrity with my deepest truth.


This was one of my moments of doubt and fear that 2017 bought for me. The resulting goodness of going THROUGH that doubt feels like golden wisdom.


By reflecting on my ‘worst bits’ (of which this was one) I acknowledge the learning and insights developed, the action I took to get there, and the changes I’m committed to making in the coming year.


Reflect on this for a moment for yourself: 


What were the three biggest challenges you faced in 2017 and more importantly: What did you learn by going through those challenges?


And then crystallise out that learning and commit to taking it into 2018 with you.


Share below or with me what your worst bits were. Let’s have them out in the light. And then also share your learning and what you’re committing to taking into 2018. Just the process of writing out those commitments will deepen their potential impact in your life.


Here’s a video giving you a little more nuance and understanding of this: https://youtu.be/wu2_Fl7OZAI


Tool 2: Embracing the Inward Turn

Tool 2: Embracing the Inward Turn


Our culture has an incessant always ON-ness about it.

Always connected, always growing, always creating, always willing to socialise, always on social media. It’s relentless, neurotic, harmful, unnatural, unsatisfying and ultimately totally unsustainable.

If you want yourself or your business to grow and develop in 2018 then you have to embrace the inward turn that this time of year offers. In order for powerful creation to take place there needs to be rest, pausing, stillness, darkness, unknown and general ‘OFF-ness’.

In nature that is exactly what is happening at this time of year. Notice around you that the sap in the trees is going down into the roots. Nature is turning inwards. The leaves are falling, growth stops or slows, most flowers are dormant, the grass ceases to grow. Nature goes to sleep as part of the preparation for the awesome growth we look forward to in the spring.

Without this period of sleep, spring would not happen.

It can feel strange for us, life slows down, our business isn’t necessarily taking off, we’re feeling the need to be inward and retreat a little from the world. 

If we’re living out of alignment and are not happy with ourselves on a deeper level then this inward turn can be uncomfortable. Part of the neurotic always ON-ness I spoke of above is because it serves as a distraction from an existential unease that many of us feel.

My suggestion is to embrace these feelings. 

Embrace the inward turn, it is what nature is doing all around you and if we don’t flow with the seasons we’re energetically out of alignment with our surroundings. Not just out of alignment with how things look and feel but out of alignment with our inner seasons, out of alignment with the workings of our spirit, out of alignment with our natural creative flows and seasons of life.

Do things like:

  • Cancel social arrangements and create time and space to be still and at home
  • spend time at home sorting through your papers in the folder of ‘important docs’
  • Get off the screen, particularly in the evening
  • Reflect on the past year by drawing mind maps and writing in your journal
  • Get rid of stuff, go to the dump or the charity shop
  • Minimise your use of social media and fight the need to go out and socialise.
  • Be with your partner at home reflecting on your past year together and making plans for the next.
  • Light a fire and get cosy and crafty in the creation of Christmas presents.

It’s a time of year for turning inward. Embrace it and you’ll be surprised at how good it feels. 

You’re nurturing your roots in preparation for a magical and kick-ass 2018.

More nuance and understanding at this video: 

Our culture has an incessant always ON-ness about it.


Always connected, always growing, always creating, always willing to socialise, always on social media. It’s relentless, neurotic, harmful, unnatural, unsatisfying and ultimately totally unsustainable.


If you want yourself or your business to grow and develop in 2018 then you have to embrace the inward turn that this time of year offers. In order for powerful creation to take place there needs to be rest, pausing, stillness, darkness, unknown and general ‘OFF-ness’.


In nature that is exactly what is happening at this time of year. Notice around you that the sap in the trees is going down into the roots. Nature is turning inwards. The leaves are falling, growth stops or slows, most flowers are dormant, the grass ceases to grow. Nature goes to sleep as part of the preparation for the awesome growth we look forward to in the spring.


Without this period of sleep, spring would not happen.


It can feel strange for us, life slows down, our business isn’t necessarily taking off, we’re feeling the need to be inward and retreat a little from the world. 


If we’re living out of alignment and are not happy with ourselves on a deeper level then this inward turn can be uncomfortable. Part of the neurotic always ON-ness I spoke of above is because it serves as a distraction from an existential unease that many of us feel.


My suggestion is to embrace these feelings. 


Embrace the inward turn, it is what nature is doing all around you and if we don’t flow with the seasons we’re energetically out of alignment with our surroundings. Not just out of alignment with how things look and feel but out of alignment with our inner seasons, out of alignment with the workings of our spirit, out of alignment with our natural creative flows and seasons of life.


Do things like:

  • Cancel social arrangements and create time and space to be still and at home
  • spend time at home sorting through your papers in the folder of ‘important docs’
  • Get off the screen, particularly in the evening
  • Reflect on the past year by drawing mind maps and writing in your journal
  • Get rid of stuff, go to the dump or the charity shop
  • Minimise your use of social media and fight the need to go out and socialise.
  • Be with your partner at home reflecting on your past year together and making plans for the next.
  • Light a fire and get cosy and crafty in the creation of Christmas presents.


It’s a time of year for turning inward. Embrace it and you’ll be surprised at how good it feels. 


You’re nurturing your roots in preparation for a magical and kick-ass 2018.


More nuance and understanding at this video: https://youtu.be/mMXniblKsTE


Tool 3: Setting a ONE word intention for next year.


Tool 3: Setting a ONE word intention for next year.

If you could only have ONE word as your intention for next year what would it be?

Now is a really good time to be putting attention on the next year but to not necessarily be doing anything. More just dreaming, visioning and intention setting. Think of it like planting seeds.

I literally use that language with people I speak to about plans for the coming year. On Sunday I spoke with one of my current creative partners (coaching clients), let’s call him Andrew, about an idea I’ve got to serve and support 100s of doctors with their personal wellbeing.

Our work together is helping Andrew build his own personal welding rituals and practices. He’s noticing how powerfully this is impacting his ability to consult, to be emotionally connected to his patients, to dive more deeply with his addiction patients and to influence the doctor around him not to be prescribing so many drugs and to do more healing interventions. It’s powerful and the results are impressive.

We explored how this could be rolled out to a number of doctors through an initial ‘health check’ 30 minute consultation with me uncovering their personal wellbeing habits. There are obviously ways and ways this could be rolled out; connecting with doctors via regional hubs, speaking to leading partners in Andrew’s practice about offering this out to everybody etc etc.

In conversation though all the ideas felt forced, felt like we were trying to bring on spring immediately, felt like now just wasn’t the right time. We both feel the magic of this time and so I literally said:

“Hey Andrea, you know what. Let’s not do anything right now. Let’s just have this as a seed of intention that we’ve planted in this magical and nutritious soil of our hearts. If action spontaneously arises then follow it, but let’s not force anything.”

One seed you can plant for yourself at this time of year is the seed of a single word intention for 2018.

I love this idea of having a single word which can act as a prism or lens through which you’ll see all of your work, relationship and personal life. 

This year mine has been body. This mean a prioritisation of all things body orientated. Yoga, meditation, music, breathing(!), eating well, running a lot (I did two cross-country half marathons!)

Through this attention to my body my business has taken off, I’ve become more embodied (obviously!) and more powerful. My music and voice have developed so much that I’m not often working as paid musician on weekend retreats.

I’m stronger and more health than I’ve ever been and this comes across immediately when I speak publicly or in person with my creative partners.

What will be your ONE word for 2018?

I’m curious to know. Hit me back with an email.

You could also share with me what you intend to create personally or professionally through focusing on your life through the lens of that single word.

My word for 2018?

S.P.I.R.I.T.

More on how that will influence my personal and professional life in the webinar…

Here’s a video with a little more nuance and understanding on this one word intention idea:

If you could only have ONE word as your intention for next year what would it be?


Now is a really good time to be putting attention on the next year but to not necessarily be doing anythning. More just dreaming, visioning and intention setting. Think of it like planting seeds.


I literally use that language with people I speak to about plans for the coming year. On Sunday I spoke with one of my current creative partners (coaching clients), let’s call him Andrew, about an idea I’ve got to serve and support 100s of doctors with their personal wellbeing.


Our work together is helping Andrew build his own personal welding rituals and practices. He’s noticing how powerfully this is impacting his ability to consult, to be emotionally connected to his patients, to dive more deeply with his addiction patients and to influence the doctor around him not to be prescribing so many drugs and to do more healing interventions. It’s powerful and the results are impressive.


We explored how this could be rolled out to a number of doctors through an initial ‘health check’ 30 minute consultation with me uncovering their personal wellbeing habits. There are obviously ways and ways this could be rolled out; connecting with doctors via regional hubs, speaking to leading partners in Andrew’s practice about offering this out to everybody etc etc.


In conversation though all the ideas felt forced, felt like we were trying to bring on spring immediately, felt like now just wasn’t the right time. We both feel the magic of this time and so I literally said:


“Hey Andrea, you know what. Let’s not do anything right now. Let’s just have this as a seed of intention that we’ve planted in this magical and nutritious soil of our hearts. If action spontaneously arises then follow it, but let’s not force anything.”


One seed you can plant for yourself at this time of year is the seed of a single word intention for 2018.


I love this idea of having a single word which can act as a prism or lens through which you’ll see all of your work, relationship and personal life. 


This year mine has been body. This mean a prioritisation of all things body orientated. Yoga, meditation, music, breathing(!), eating well, running a lot (I did two cross-country half marathons!)


Through this attention to my body my business has taken off, I’ve become more embodied (obviously!) and more powerful. My music and voice have developed so much that I’m not often working as paid musician on weekend retreats.


I’m stronger and more health than I’ve ever been and this comes across immediately when I speak publicly or in person with my creative partners.


What will be your ONE word for 2018?


I’m curious to know. Hit me back with an email.


You could also share with me what you intend to create personally or professionally through focusing on your life through the lens of that single word.


My word for 2018?


S.P.I.R.I.T.


More on how that will influence my personal and professional life in the webinar…


Here’s a video with a little more nuance and understanding on this one word intention idea: https://youtu.be/mV5Pi5nUtkI


Join me for a Webinar to diver Deeper.

On 28th January between 17.30 and 19:00 UK time I’m hosting a webinar diving into powerful personal practices and spiritual tools that will enable you to create a kick-ass 2018.

Booking link is here: https://create-a-magical-2018.eventbrite.co.uk

Here is what we’ll cover:

Why having ONE word as an intention creates a laser sharp focus that I’ve witnessed having astonishing results. 

The year my coach has ‘Money’ as his word and he created $250,000 of income. My word for 2017 is ‘Body’ - I’ve prioritised my yoga and running, my music and voice. I’ve run in two cross-country half marathons and have become fitter, better balanced, more powerful and more strong than I’ve ever been. This has fed into my coaching work and my public speaking. My business has taken off and I’ve created more success this year than ever before.

All done through focusing on my body first which is enabled by my focus being laser sharp through my ONE word intention…

What would your word be that would have the rest of your life bought into focus and clarity THROUGH this single word intention?

There’s ben an opportunity to share your word during our webinar so we can witness your commitment to this for the coming year.

Why making resolutions is bollocks and how making commitments to yourself is a risky and yet totally necessary, powerful and fulfilling step to take.

New Year resolutions are notorious for not lasting. Ok. We all know that. 

What do we do instead? Commitments. 

We’re afraid of this word in our culture and for good reason. Most of us make commitments that we don’t end up keeping and then feel bad about having ever made them. This issue is understood through a concept called ‘Self-Efficacy’. This is your level of belief in yourself to achieve the goals that you set yourself. 

What’s your level of self-efficacy like? Low? 

Well, hop onto this webinar and I’ll tell you how you can build this important ingredient in creating the life that you want. 

Sneak preview: One idea I will share is to make your commitments SMALL - this means that they’re so easy you can’t NOT do them. 

But not only small, the rest I’ll share in the webinar!

Building your level of self-efficacy could be the SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR in whether 2018 is the year or your dreams coming true or whether you repeat the 

Why focusing on the bad parts of 2017 will have your learning your lessons properly.

Reviewing your 2017 is important in order to learn the most from your experiences. If you’ve experienced doubt, fear, unknown, insecurity, anger, resentment, selfishness, loneliness and any other challenge this year then GOOD. It’s in these moments when the greatest learning happens. 

Capturing this learning, reflecting on how you’ve grown and on what you’re taking into 2018 is crucial to making the most of the difficulties and in helping you grow in to the best version of yourself.

Personally a recent period of insecurity had me realise that I needed more structure in my business. The insecurity was terrible to experience; I had long days of fear, of discomfort, of doubt, of not knowing and of trouble in many relationships. THROUGH that challenge I’ve created 2018 with simple focus, clear structure and a deep grounded sense of security. 

I’m pumped to share this plan with you and help you create your own.

Why now is a brilliant time to be investing in yourself.

It can never feel like a good time to invest in yourself and yet if we want to make progress as powerful creative people then this is essential. In March 2017 I committed to investing £12,000 in receiving coaching from John Morgan. At the time it was more money than I had access to and so we had to create a payment plan. Within three months I’d created easily this investment and so paid off the plan in advance.

Investing in yourself doesn’t have to mean coaching. This week I spend £130 in a local running shop. That’s investing in myself through buying good kit that is aligned with keeping me fit and healthy. I’m eyeing up a fantastic pair of speakers that will cost £240 but seeing this through the idea of investing in myself and my music career has the purchase make a lot more sense. And, well, it’s Christmas. 

Go crazy and invest now in yourself for 2018.

Even better is to align your investments in yourself with your one word intention for the year. This is a way of literally bringing your intention into physical form and manifesting it in front of you.

What would be your investment in yourself that would represent your intention for the year?

You can probably feel that I’m pumped about sharing this webinar with you. And it’s not only a webinar. I’m inviting everybody who joins to a one to one coaching session booked within one month of the webinar.

Here is how it works:

You invest £75 through Eventbrite at this link:

https://create-a-magical-2018.eventbrite.co.uk

For this investment you will receive:

The 90 minute webinar from 5.30-7pm Wednesday 28th 17.30 January 2018

A 45 minute 1-1 coaching with me within one month of the webinar.

A copy of my ebook ‘Be More Awesome’ which will help you create your personal daily spiritual practice.

Any questions about this please get in touch. 

And if this isn’t for you but you’d like to be kept in the loop about upcoming webinars, events and offers please join my mailing list here: http://eepurl.com/baB065

On 28th January between 17.30 and 19:00 UK time I’m hosting a webinar diving into powerful personal practices and spiritual tools that will enable you to create a kick-ass 2018.


Booking link is here: https://create-a-magical-2018.eventbrite.co.uk


Here is what we’ll cover:


Why having ONE word as an intention creates a laser sharp focus that I’ve witnessed having astonishing results. 


The year my coach has ‘Money’ as his word and he created $250,000 of income. My word for 2017 is ‘Body’ - I’ve prioritised my yoga and running, my music and voice. I’ve run in two cross-country half marathons and have become fitter, better balanced, more powerful and more strong than I’ve ever been. This has fed into my coaching work and my public speaking. My business has taken off and I’ve created more success this year than ever before.


All done through focusing on my body first which is enabled by my focus being laser sharp through my ONE word intention…


What would your word be that would have the rest of your life bought into focus and clarity THROUGH this single word intention?


There’s ben an opportunity to share your word during our webinar so we can witness your commitment to this for the coming year.


Why making resolutions is bollocks and how making commitments to yourself is a risky and yet totally necessary, powerful and fulfilling step to take.


New Year resolutions are notorious for not lasting. Ok. We all know that. 


What do we do instead? Commitments. 


We’re afraid of this word in our culture and for good reason. Most of us make commitments that we don’t end up keeping and then feel bad about having ever made them. This issue is understood through a concept called ‘Self-Efficacy’. This is your level of belief in yourself to achieve the goals that you set yourself. 


What’s your level of self-efficacy like? Low? 


Well, hop onto this webinar and I’ll tell you how you can build this important ingredient in creating the life that you want. 


Sneak preview: One idea I will share is to make your commitments SMALL - this means that they’re so easy you can’t NOT do them. 


But not only small, the rest I’ll share in the webinar!


Building your level of self-efficacy could be the SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR in whether 2018 is the year or your dreams coming true or whether you repeat the 


Why focusing on the bad parts of 2017 will have your learning your lessons properly.


Reviewing your 2017 is important in order to learn the most from your experiences. If you’ve experienced doubt, fear, unknown, insecurity, anger, resentment, selfishness, loneliness and any other challenge this year then GOOD. It’s in these moments when the greatest learning happens. 


Capturing this learning, reflecting on how you’ve grown and on what you’re taking into 2018 is crucial to making the most of the difficulties and in helping you grow in to the best version of yourself.


Personally a recent period of insecurity had me realise that I needed more structure in my business. The insecurity was terrible to experience; I had long days of fear, of discomfort, of doubt, of not knowing and of trouble in many relationships. THROUGH that challenge I’ve created 2018 with simple focus, clear structure and a deep grounded sense of security. 


I’m pumped to share this plan with you and help you create your own.


Why now is a brilliant time to be investing in yourself.


It can never feel like a good time to invest in yourself and yet if we want to make progress as powerful creative people then this is essential. In March 2017 I committed to investing £12,000 in receiving coaching from John Morgan. At the time it was more money than I had access to and so we had to create a payment plan. Within three months I’d created easily this investment and so paid off the plan in advance.


Investing in yourself doesn’t have to mean coaching. This week I spend £130 in a local running shop. That’s investing in myself through buying good kit that is aligned with keeping me fit and healthy. I’m eyeing up a fantastic pair of speakers that will cost £240 but seeing this through the idea of investing in myself and my music career has the purchase make a lot more sense. And, well, it’s Christmas. 


Go crazy and invest now in yourself for 2018.


Even better is to align your investments in yourself with your one word intention for the year. This is a way of literally bringing your intention into physical form and manifesting it in front of you.


What would be your investment in yourself that would represent your intention for the year?


+++


You can probably feel that I’m pumped about sharing this webinar with you. And it’s not only a webinar. I’m inviting everybody who joins to a one to one coaching session booked within one month of the webinar.


Here is how it works:


You invest £75 through Eventbrite at this link:


For this investment you will receive:


The 90 minute webinar from 5.30-7pm Wednesday 28th 17.30 January 2018

A 45 minute 1-1 coaching with me within one month of the webinar.

A copy of my ebook ‘Be More Awesome’ which will help you create your personal daily spiritual practice.


Any questions about this please get in touch. 


And if this isn’t for you but you’d like to be kept in the loop about upcoming webinars, events and offers please join my mailing list here: http://eepurl.com/baB065

Now it's your turn. What do you think? Comment below. 

About the Author Chris Hardy

Sharing ideas and actions on building authentic, happy and impactful lives. Nearly everything I write about comes from one to one coaching conversations…


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A Perfectionist’s Guide to Letting Go

A perfectionist's guide to letting go

Gretchen Diehl
Gretchen is a visual artist and mother of 2, who loves to create.
10 January 2018  |  20 minute read

Breathe. You are already perfect.

Each January, I write a list of objectives or goals for the coming year in an effort to motivate myself to be ambitious and/or do the most good in my life for the next 365 days. Over the last decade, these lists have helped me to apply to (and appear in) numerous art exhibitions, complete the illustrations for my tarot deck, read more, write more, donate more to charity, and learn the fundamentals of cooking. Since the birth of my first child a little over 3 years ago, however, that annual list-making tradition has fallen to the wayside.

In 2017 I found myself composing my list in early March, and really not looking at it again until… well, until I was thinking of writing this article to share my so-called wisdom with all of you. This unintentional loosening of the reins has given me a little perspective about perfectionism, ambition, and the counter-intuitive satisfaction of letting go.

The Backstory

Throughout my life, people (teachers, friends… my poor, exhausted mother) have referred to me as a perfectionist. I wanted straight A’s in my classes, I wanted to be the most skilled artist in my school, the most thoughtful friend and daughter, the best dancer in the studio… and I put in the work, for the most part, but I had a ton of interests, and there were only so many hours in the day. I began to equate success not only with proficiency, but with my own notion of best-ness.

Drawing something really well and being pleased with the image I made only felt good until I saw something that someone else had drawn that was better, more beautiful, or more inspiring. It could be someone in my art class, or a painting hanging in the freaking Met. It didn’t matter. If it was better than what I had made, I could enjoy its beauty for about 5 seconds before feeling a nauseating pang of jealously and a sinking disappointment in my own abilities. I drove myself crazy.

And I expected this level of accomplishment in many areas of my life, not just one. I expected to be “gifted” with an ability to create images, move my body, and compile words better than anyone else I knew. On top of that, I expected myself to be the most thoughtful friend with the most interesting stories, who tells them at the right time, never puts her foot in her mouth, and always manages to bring a handmade gift when someone is feeling down.

At this time in my life, whenever I felt exhausted and frustrated and overworked (which was often) I found myself defaulting to the phrase, "I can't work any harder." It was both an excuse and a cry of defeat. It was everything a bad mantra can be; coddling and disempowering. Saying it to myself simply made me more upset, and helped me to remain stuck in the feeling that I was experiencing.

In the years following high school, I found myself moving away from these feelings as they pertained to my professional interests (maturing, I guess), while still putting pressure on my social persona. I was becoming more ok with being mediocre, as I would have described it at the time, but still needed to be “everything to everyone” socially.

I was learning how to be a part of the world instead of my own deity, and the growing pains were real. It felt like letting go of everything because of how far “perfectionism” had pervaded my life. I had to let go of trying to be the best, but each area of my life was a new revelation, so it felt like a new disappointment every few months when I realized I had dropped another ball.

Walking around Barnes & Noble one day in Philly, I came across a weird little book that cracked me up. It was called The Underachiever’s Manifesto, and the text on the cover was hyphenated because “Underachiever’s” didn’t quite fit on the center line. It was cheeky and charming and I bought it for $3 or something. Then it sat on my shelf collecting dust for 5 years.

When I was 26 I started teaching college courses on the topic of Fashion Marketing (mostly retail math as well as how to manage a store or buy for customers) and I immediately loved the atmosphere. I felt like an expert (which I love), and often, students would ask questions that I didn’t know the answers to, and I would have to research and bring that information back the next week. I was surprised at the natural softening of my ego that happened at that time. Looking back at who I was in the past, it seemed like calling out my lack of knowledge would have been a hard hit for me to take, but I quickly took to saying, “you know, I’m not sure, but I will find out and get back to you,” and it was surprisingly empowering.

I befriended another instructor at the college who was known by the student population as a slacker. I didn’t immediately respect her approach, but I was drawn to her. I knew there were different ways that instructors gleaned results from their students, and my approach (motherly and high-energy), combined with this low-energy colleague's approach as well as some of the other Devil-Wears-Prada professors, created a well-rounded education where students gained experience that could be translated into working for a ball-buster or having to direct your own learning to train for a new field.

It wasn't that I couldn't see the value in the instruction that she provided, it's that I didn’t understand how her career could be satisfying to her. I felt like I could finally exhale when I received my “Teaching Excellence Award” in my 12th quarter. I was chosen out of all of the instructors at the school to receive it, and she laughed and told me she had never gotten one in her 25 years of teaching. I wasn’t appalled, but I was super confused.

After sitting in on her final project critiques a few times, we realized we lived in the same part of the city, and she took to offering me a ride because she knew I walked everywhere and didn’t have a car. We would chat during our 20 minute drives together, and I learned a few things about her; she was single and had a lot of free time, she smiled an awful lot, she adopted a lot of pets from a shelter where she did a lot of volunteer work, and she was just as confused by my level of anxiety toward achievement as I was confused by her comfort and complacency… and all of those things together started to look like freedom.

On one of our rides she described herself as an underachiever and laughed. I told her about the book I owned and never read, and she said, “that sounds like something I would have written if I cared to take the time to do it,” and laughed harder. Her calm was infectious.

That same night I dug up the book and read it from cover to cover (it took less than an hour), and felt oddly comforted. Most of the advice would sound obvious to a well-adjusted person:

“if you don’t want to do something, don’t do it”

“if you can’t get to something, don’t worry about it”

While others were a little more tongue-in-cheek:

“why do today what you can put off until tomorrow?”

When I was done, I felt the odd sense of comfort that comes from getting to know a part of myself really well. There is a lot that I like about creating checklists to keep myself on task and accomplishing the small parts of larger goals. I have a multifaceted personality that really benefits from that kind of mental organization. If it isn’t in a list, or on my calendar, there is a good chance it will be forgotten in the shuffle of the 43 other things that need to get done by the end of the week. But there has to be a healthy balance.

Because the lists and the goals and the finish lines were such a part of my life for so long, I started to wear blinders for the journey. I wasn’t enjoying the small things, the everyday beauty. I could never have described myself if I had ever tried online dating. I thought of myself as a list of accomplishments instead of a pile of complex and contradictory personality characteristics, even though I would describe my friends otherwise. These expectations were not the same for other people, only myself. I did associate MY achievements with MY worthiness, and every year that passed with a New Years Checklist that was only 50% complete, was a year of opportunities half-lost.

But time is never lost, it is spent in other ways.

I found, in the back of my mind, that horrible little mantra creeping back into my consciousness; "I can't work any harder," but this time I did something new. I laughed at it.

The truth is that I CAN work harder than I currently am, but is that the goal? This terrible mantra did not serve me well in the past and was not going to be helpful now. I needed to come up with a more conscious dialogue. Something that complements the way that my brain works. Its default expressions. I spent time getting to know my own mental habits through journaling. I found that, like most people, I am pretty rude to myself.

I was putting these mental vagaries into concrete terms as I was experiencing my first pregnancy (with my son, who is now 3), which brings its own emotional challenges. I found this to be an empowering time to try to tackle many of my negative self-talk habits, as I didn't want any chemical changes to affect my baby, nor did I want him emulating my self-deprecating humor when he became old enough to repeat everything I say (which is now, as it were).

One of my biggest issues is my expectation of social perfection. The need to be loved and admired by everyone and not make any embarrassing mistakes. My need to be the one that everyone comes to with their problems, and, when that works, my exhaustion from empathizing and absorbing the major and minor decisions and disappointments of all of the people I love.

The first part of addressing this involved identifying the existing narrative, or what I was feeling about this expectation I imposed on myself. It felt like a responsibility. Having been this person to many people in my life for much of my life started to feel like an expectation not only of mine, but of theirs.

Feeling that expectation from other people started to morph into guilt, and then exhausted resentment. So I needed to come up with something to counteract that cycle of expectation-responsibility-guilt, and the mantra that felt the best was, "I am not responsible for anyone else's happiness." Saying it was freeing, and in time, became calming. It is something I am still working to fully believe, but saying it at certain moments 'defuses the bomb,' so to speak.

This past spring, when I started living with my parents (and older brother), I realized that I needed to adjust my mantra... "I am not responsible for anyone else's happiness" was a helpful beginning, but there were times that I felt deflated and defeated by the negative emotions of people around me. The energy that it took to keep 2 very young kids entertained and stimulated left me with a very low tolerance for much of anything else.

I tried very hard to be accommodating in the meals I would cook, the chores I would take on, and the schedule I would keep. I would be the sounding board for everyone individually (which had been my role when I was young, and therefore was difficult to distance myself from when I moved back in to my family home). When I would do things in an effort to please people, MY actions were not exhausting me, but when my actions did not result in someone else's happiness, I felt like a failure. As if time was wasted, or I was just not getting it 'right enough.' Saying "I am not responsible for anyone else's happiness," should have worked, but I had to realize that there was another layer to it. I had to add, "and no one owes me their happiness." I can do all the nice things in the world, but at the end of the day, their happiness is not owed to me, and is no judgment on me. After realizing how self-absorbed that perspective was, it was relatively easy to let go.

I am not responsible for anyone else's happiness.

No one owes me their happiness.

and I am enough for myself...

Perfectionism is only helpful as a motivator until it isn't. Perfectionism sets expectations, creates a list of goals, demands quantity AND quality, and does not accept the fact that I am just plain tired. Perfectionism has helped me to accomplish a lot in the early part of my life, and I appreciate that. It was synonymous with my identity. As my family grows and my role in this world changes, I become more and more aware of the stress that perfectionism caused me, and how upsetting it would be to see my children accomplishing big things, only to feel less-than a few moments later when the high of achieving wears off.

Going forward, it is my aim to treat myself the way that I would want my children to be treated. It's a high bar to set, but worth reaching for. To look at myself with as much objectivity as possible, but also with a crap-ton of love and excitement for what is to come in the future.

Now it's your turn. What do you think? Comment below. 

About the Author Gretchen Diehl

Gretchen Diehl is a visual artist training to be a tattoo artist in the Poconos.  She lives with her husband and their 2 quirky little kids.  Her previous works include an illustrated tarot deck and a variety of wearable and textile goods created under the pseudonym 'BirdQueen.'  Gretchen is passionate about health, fitness, and food, making beautiful images, and living in love, and writes "often" about all of these topics.    


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