The Trajectory of Personal Growth and Change

If you’re on your own path of personal growth and expansion, your journey will be highly individualized and unique. Certainly, there will be times when your place in time and space and your coordinates align with someone else, leading to a bit of education and excitement along the way, then you will find yourself being led in yet, another direction.

Why can’t you just join hands and enjoy the entire journey with a particular group of friends? You absolutely can do that, but your expansion will be limited by maintaining the familiar frequency vibration of your friends. To be true to your evolutionary potential, there will be times when you go it alone, and in many cases, once you have traversed this rugged trail alone, you find yourself in very different territory and on a completely different trajectory.

If you’re travelling from Seattle to New York, the slightest change in trajectory can land you in Miami Beach. Likewise, your trajectory greatly affects the direction your path will lead. The truth is, while you share similarities with other people that you meet along the way (and it can be fun to hang out with others there for a while), you must realize they are not you. Even if you share camaraderie with them because you have certain things in common, you gotta move.

You can tarry and stay there if you want, and many people decide to do so because it’s familiar or comfortable. Even so, you know something inside you is beckoning you to new vantage points and unexplored territory. You are so very unique and you’re coordinates in time and space are so highly individualized that no one could possibly be on the same journey as you.

No one really knows you. They haven’t lived the life you have lived. They do not know the thoughts that race around inside our head, they do not share the exact same chemistry as you (no, not even identical twins). The YOU of who you are is not like anyone else. This is God’s gift to you. You can decide to accept it and get moving, or deny it and remain the same.

Your evolution is calling to you. You are the change. Your new life is waiting for you to arrive.

But you will not get there if you don’t go.

How do you do it?

Only you can decide. Others who have forged new paths who have given us clues of how to successfully charter new territory start by establishing their starting point, longitude and latitude, inventorying supplies and resources prior to departure. It’s best to establish where you are (to the best of your ability) before your launch.

It’s good to have a plan. Columbus had a plan, to discover an alternate route to Asia. Similarly, you should have your individualized plan based on your dreams, desires and the result of your deep inner work. Like Columbus, even with the best intentions and planning, you could end up somewhere you never intended to be. Even so, when you arrive you will know this was your higher calling and, who knows? Your journey may be celebrated and an inspiration for other “Expansion Explorers.”

Which brings up an entirely oft overlooked detail of documenting ones journey. I’ve never been one to be one for journaling, but many of my clients and friends swear by it, although I have left a trail of writings that painfully document my particular thought process at various times along my personal journey (that are embarrassing to look back on from this vantage point). I can attest to the validity of documentation. In any logical and/or legal (or medical) sense, “if you didn’t document it, it didn’t happen.” ‘Ere, journaling, whether privately or publicly (as in social media), is highly recommended.

This is your time. This is your life. This is your journey.

Establish where you are, have an intention and plan in mind, and move.

Want you ramp up your effectiveness and influence? Chart your progress via documentation.

If you are called to do so, allow your courageous journey to be an inspiration to others, who may be too frightened to do so.

Feel free to check in with me along the way.

10 Ways to Increase Your Performance

1. Why

Ask yourself why you want to increase your performance, whether it’s at home at the office, in your relationships, in your bank account, wherever you want to increase your performance, ask yourself why? Why do you want to have marked improvement in the area at hand (there may be many areas where you might desire to experience a marked improvement but focus on which area feels the most pressing, right now). Once you define your why (which may change along the way) you have the base of your motivation to change.

2. Visualize

You need to create an image of you achieving your highest and best in this area of your life. What does the endgame look like if you could have anything the way you want it to be, all you dreams realized, the absolute best result or outcome; what would that look like? In your mind create the absolute best result in full color, what would it look like, feel like, smell like. Notice key markers, find visual representations of these key markers and find images that represent them. Images you can cut out of magazines, or print out, and tape it somewhere you can see it. Put it on your bathroom mirror, your refrigerator, your workstation, etc… Nobody else needs to know that that image represents, it’s just for you to act as a reminder that you know what “better than this” would look like in your wildest dreams.

3. Play Hide and Seek

Start looking for opportunities that will move you closer to where you want to be (and alternatively further away from what you don’t want). An amazing thing happens, once you are aware of your “Why” (#1) and you’ve seen in your mind’s eye how much better it could be, if you start looking for opportunities to advance or change, suddenly you start to see them appear. It doesn’t take long, and you will notice these opportunities were always there, only you couldn’t see them because they were hidden from view. Not so much hidden, as your beliefs or a lack of self worthiness obscured them from your awareness. Something has been calling you to a higher state, a better life, a more fulfilling way of living with increased satisfaction and love, but because of your reticence, you were unable to see it or didn’t believe you were worthy of having it better. Keep seeking and you will find ways to close the gap from where you are and where you want to be.

4. Make a Plan

A plan is like a map that can get you from here to there. You need to know where you are and where you’re going. Just as a map has markers between here and there, like you know if you’re travelling from one city to another, there are going to be towns you will have to pass between here and there. Knowing you’ve passed on of those key checkpoints ensures you are making progress (you might even stop to have a coffee or piece of pie – like little rewards or celebrations – along the way, but don’t tarry, keep moving). Thinks of ways you can start to assure you’re moving and making measureable progress. Make a schedule, prioritize activities and constantly check in with your internal GPS to evaluate your progress. Above all, stay on course and keep moving in the direction of where you want to be.

5. Avoid Distraction

Invariably, when you start to make significant advancements in your life, you will face opposition, both from external sources, like other people (including people you love becoming more needy, requiring more or your attention) and circumstances that will appear as to be thwarting your efforts to push through to the nest level, as well as internal sources, like your lack of belief in yourself, or negative self talk, all designed to distract you and throw you off course. And if that wasn’t enough to distract you, you will notice the media, and your personal devices will increasingly be finding was to keep you from achieving your highest and best. Learn to say, “No,” to distractions and resume you’re looking for opportunities to move closer to what you want.

6. Educate and Correct

Read books, blogs, and when you are able, get an accountability partner or coach. When you start making the move from a comfortable (or tolerable) way of living to a completely new plateau, it’s good to have ideas on how to make the journey. You can get these ideas by reading about who others have made the transition. An accountability partner or coach is like having a co-pilot or being able to check in with the weather service and tower (as if you were flying a plane and wanted to know how the weather might affect your flight and making certain the flight path was clear). Having another set of eyes vested in seeing your dream come true can help immensely, when your vision is limited to the view from your cockpit, allowing you to make important corrections along the way.

7. Question and Listen

Being in a constant state of openness can be highly beneficial. Don’t excommunicate others who might have a valuable tidbit that might be helpful for your journey. Don’t eliminate the possibility of learning from someone else (what to do, or not to do) by immediately discarding someone else’s point of view. Ask questions along the way, and wait for the answers, always being open to hear the input of someone else. Realize that whoever is giving you advice may not have the best answer. Even though they are adamant and passionate, don’t judge them, if their advice does not resonate with you. Realize they are only doing the best they can with what they have. (That person, who may sound like a kook today, may be highly valuable to your journey in the future.)

8. Honor and Gratitude

Honor those who have supported and helped you along the way, with the highest respect and gratitude. For if it were not for them (whether their influence was good, or bad), you would not be on the path that you are on today, and you would not be making the progress you are making to achieve your highest and best. Be gracious, seeing the good in all things (even if they look bad at the time) because they are moving you closer and preparing you for what lies ahead. Give thanks in all things, because this is the journey that gives your life meaning and a reason to live a life better lived.

9. Maintain Your Resources

Keep an adequate awareness about your personal resources which you have for your journey, don’t lost them. You’re going to need them. This includes your own personal health and wellness. Take time out to enjoy the journey, to relax and refuel along the way, because the last thing you want to do is to run out of gas along the way. Do not neglect your body, the vehicle without which you would not have the ability to make the journey at all. Think about keeping it in tip top condition – at least the best condition possible – for your journey. Good health will make the journey so much more enjoyable and satisfying.

10. Give It All You’ve Got

Pursue your goals with passion and heart-felt admiration and love. The more you put in, the more rewarding the payoff, as well as all the milestones between here and there. The less you hold-back, the greater the gain. Be willing to push through when the getting gets rough (as you are likely to meet resistance along the way) and have an exciting story of perseverance when you have made it through.

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to traverse this path, follow it through to its logical conclusion and to be a light to others in search of taking on the task of daring to live a better life.

Don’t Stop Believing

Remember, back when you were in school and your classmates and others would ask, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” If you were an ambitious dreamer, like me, you would spin tales of unlived possibilities in an unknown future that lies just around the bend beyond the familiar terrain of the present.

You were young. You had dreams. As a young adult you were just starting your life’s journey and may have been willing to take the midnight train going anywhere, just to get a chance to experience something new and exciting. You were bold, adventurous, and though you may have been afraid, you were willing to roll the dice just one more time just to see what fate might tempt you with.

You were alive. The whole world was yours for the asking. You had a belief that you could do anything – and you could – all you had to do was to take the step and doors would open. You believed a vast world of possibilities held treasures in store for you, and if someone dared ask you about it, you could tell stories of a future yet to be realized, like a movie that never ends, and go on and on…

Then something happened

The rude awakening – life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness – you want the reasonable basics of life. And you start pondering more base questions about life, like “Where will I live?” Where will my next meal come from? How can I support myself? What do I have to offer a potential mate?

While you still believe and are willing to continue to dream, life grabs you by the wrist and hurls you into a sense of duty and responsibility as you reason, “I need to get a job.” Or some other sobering thought, as you hear the door to the cage close, realizing you’ve just been caught in the trap of life.

Life in prison

Day by day, your enthusiasm wanes as your dreams fade and you stop believing in a fabulous future. You resign yourself to the mundane day to day lifestyle of a reality where dreams no longer exist and become accustom to the engine’s drone as you taxi into your life of mediocrity.

The little, rare fanfares interrupt your otherwise “normal” life, where every day is just the same as the day before. The alarm goes off, the scurry to do what needs to be done. The hustle and bustle of your daily routine, which could probably be conducted while blindfolded, all to find yourself safely at home. Relax for a few minutes, until “lights out.” And it starts all over again.

And you go about making the best of your life in prison, without a thought of what’s going on outside, because to allow yourself to think of it would just be too tragic. That is, until you meet that young person, of whom you ask the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”

In that moment you remember a time when you believed in all the possibilities, and you hope maybe to get a glimpse in the life of this young person of the flame that once burned in you so brightly. You think, even though you wasted your chance, maybe you could recapture the feeling by living vicariously through the life of this youth. Then, invariably, the young person with a dream of a brighter future begins to ask, “Where will I live?” and you know what comes next, as you shrug your shoulders and resign yourself to believe that belief is folly.

Don’t Stop Believing!

And that’s just how society has trained you to think and react. When you stop believing, the machine wins as you become nothing more than a functioning part of it, without hopes, dreams and unmotivated to disrupt the status quo.

It’s never too late to start believing and resuming your life’s journey again. All you have to do is to start where you left off. Have the courage to ask yourself, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”

Don’t think of yourself as someone whose future has already been spent. You can ever continue to grow and change, embracing a brighter future and daring to do something to make the world a better place, no matter what station in life you may be in or what your age might be.

Dare to dream about the bright future that lies ahead, waiting for you in the next season of your life.

As you step back into the driver’s seat, ready to embark on your renewed life’s journey, you can continue to grow, evolve, write and rewrite your life’s script, like the movie that never ends, it goes on and on, and on, and on…

Don’t Stop Believing

Personal Adventurers

Do you see things in your life that ended up being less than what you had hoped for?

Are you okay with the idea that things are fine the way they are and might lead to something even better than you’d expected from your previous ideas?

Are you okay with others doing the best they can with what they have and it is not up to you to try to manage or change their life, in a sense allowing them to find their own way?

Do you love the person you are without having to seek approval or validation from others?

When your life is disrupted by an unexpected life circumstance are you apt to quickly adapt and look for the better thing that is coming to you?

If these questions resonate with you as ideas that you are embracing as you are moving through life, then like me, you are on a path of the personal adventurer. Personal adventurers are able to find value, the lesson, even reverent levity or happiness in even the worst of circumstances. When other people might self-destruct become defensive, strike out in fear, anger, or sink into a deep depression, you are looking to experience the situation from an alternative perspective, you find yourself looking for the treasure in every tragedy or challenge.

Let’s say you lost your job, found yourself in hard times and unable regain your balance. This might be a condition that would throw someone into the depths of depression, but you feel something good is headed your way. Then while taking a stroll down the street in the early evening someone approached you on the street with a stocking cap covering his face and a gun pointed at you asking you for your purse or wallet. There is any number of ways to respond to such a challenge, but you’re likely to smile and with uncomfortable levity, you might respond with, “Really? Did you pick the wrong person tonight, I should be holding you up,” and end up striking up a conversation with the would-be thief.

What would have been a life-threatening event in someone else’s life was an opportunity for you to reach out to another human being without losing the grip on your own life and/or emotions even in a personally difficult situation.

When faced with the most challenging of life circumstances, you are looking for ways to uncover goodness, mercy, understanding and value in the experience which empowers you to move into the futures with knowledge and power which would ether elude others, or may have been obtained via master level training. You benefit from every experience and continue to move ahead with your new found training locked in as a new tool in your tool belt for whatever lies ahead.

It is here that you find a sense of inner peace in all things.

No one can tell you how to think about or process the data presented to you on your life’s journey. Sure, you can be open to insight from others, but only you can apply the learning or appreciate the beauty and elegance of the uncovered treasure no matter how great or how small.

Philosophers and religious leaders present us with their view of a particular concept or ideal and there may be instances where you feel a common resonance with someone else who is on their own individual path and for a while (possibly for a long while) you may find yourself walking in lock step along similar paths at the same time. These times are precious as they foster a sense of belonging and camaraderie which is comforting, though for most of us, that tug from our heart to move forward begins to lead us into a different direction.

If this is you, you have an adventurous soul which seeks to find its own way and experience things that may not be available to others who travel in groups for long periods of time, and that’s okay. Not only is it okay, but really it’s the only way you will find peace, fulfillment and happiness; by making your own way. And who knows? You might be clearing a path for others as you grab your compass and machete and forge your own path. Certainly, you will have access to data that may not be available to others following the well-worn path.

Even though most of us like to feel a part of the greater whole, only the individual is able to see that his or her adventurous propensity is actually a part of the hugely greater whole that others may not be able to see or even consider from their vantage point on their path. We have a sense of taking the high road, one that may be more challenging, but the rewards are so worth it. We long for enormous views of aerial vistas that can only be imagined from below.

Society and the media try to designate who we should be, how we should act and think. This promotes a herd mentality which causes us to divide and to devise brother against brother, to judge other people for conducting themselves in a manner which you have been programmed to accept, “is not acceptable.”

But you have an inner sense of knowingness that you cannot change, control or take responsibility for another person’s actions, you are keenly aware that you are only responsible for you, your thoughts, ideas, behaviors and manifestations.

You are becoming more accepting or tolerant of people and things being what they are. While others are more apt to focus on the tragedies and injustices, you find yourself focusing on the beauty and elegance of all the good things that are taking place simultaneously. To maintain a positive perspective, even in the worst of times, is a blessing and the lever which releases real joy and happiness.

After a while, don’t be surprised if you find humor – even possibly giving way to laughter – in even the most tragic circumstances. While others might think your response is disrespectful and contemplate calling someone to have you sent to a loony bin, don’t take it personal. They have been programmed to have this sense of belief system, and that’s okay. They’re only doing the best they can with what they have. Maybe they will find their own way in the future, maybe not. Don’t take it personal, just give it a shrug and say, “Oh well,” and keep it moving. There is no need to defend your position, just allow everyone to have their own opinion and perspective and bless them as you walk by.

You live in a world where you are surrounded by others who do not have your best interests at heart, and only you can determine what is best for you, so don’t allow these individuals to threaten you or beat you into submission, unless of course, you have come to the conclusion that submitting (or feigning submission) may actually allow you the freedom to move on.