When I was travelling around the world, one of my first bus rides dropped my travel companion and I near a Guatemala hostel. It was about a quarter mile walk to get to the lobby, and my friend literally surged ahead.
However, the pack I was carrying weighed about 50 pounds and I couldn't walk fast. It was too much --- I was carrying way too much stuff. Things were literally weighing me down: a pack of socks, ten t-shirts, two sweaters, extra water bottles, and more. I needed to get rid of stuff, reduce the stockpiling, and realize that the universe will provide. I gave the extra socks and t-shirts to the man working the desk, he seemed pretty happy about it. I took off about 10 pounds of weight and had a little more spring in my step, and I realized I had to let go of everything except the basic essentials, if I wanted to make the journey successfully.
Which are your basic essentials?
Where is your baggage that is dragging you down?
Are you comfortable with your load?
I've worked with enough women at this point to profoundly understand the role of the entrepreneur / visionary / idealist who is navigating through this world to create value, sustain relationships, and build a lasting legacy. It's tough to be in charge, and for those of us who are in charge of everything - the triple bottom line, the children, the aging parents, the business, the organization, the campaign -- it is a heavy load to carry.
If you're leaping into the world of entrepreneurship and of creating solutions to ongoing problems, then let go of your baggage? What are you already holding on to that makes it even more difficult for you to "move through" the painful, deeply troubling, breakup-inducing, stress-related, creepy, sad, heart attack-promoting parts of building your legacy?
- Do you believe you're worthy?
- Do you believe that you're up for the challenge?
- Do you think you deserve success?
- Are you willing to reach out to other people?
- Do you delegate?
- Do you believe that everyone is perfect in their own way (or that no one's perfect = same difference)
- Were you a tinkerer, inventor, dreamer, or doer when you were young?
- Can you see what other people don't yet see?
- Are you concerned about building something that works well?
- Is anything worth doing, worth doing well?
- Do you get enough sleep, adequate nutrition, and exercise everyday?
- Are you willing to take full responsibility?
- Do you have intestinal fortitude? (Are you gutsy?)
If you answered yes to most of these, you're fine. Keep doing what you're doing.
If you're still mired in the slog of any of the following, you'll want to work through your personal issues *first*, prior to unleashing them on your customers, team, staff, and end users.
- Feeling unworthy
- Not believing in yourself
- Don't think you're ready
- Don't deserve anything
- Belief that other people are to blame
- Take on everything, then feel bad about it
- Find fault easily
- Refuse to look under the hood
- Blindness / willful ignorance
- Not too concerned about your own work
- Not too concerned about other people's work
- Abusive, self-abusive, or generally disrespectful
- Not willing to sign on the bottom line
- Not up for the challenge
Baggage drags us all down. Travel light.
When we let go of the things that bring us low (worry, despair, stress-related activities, toxic relationships), we open our arms wide and embrace good opportunities, positive experiences, and wonderful, soul-touching relationships.
For entrepreneurs, changemakers, and those in leadership - take a first step towards your journey towards success:
I recommend you understand what your baggage is, then start putting away anything that no longer serves you. Let's travel light, make the world a better place, and leave our heavy packages behind.
Here are some exercises to assist you in generating a baggage-free perspective:
1) Ask other people for help. Ask more people for help.
2) Brainstorm 5 different solutions to any specific issue, challenge, or problem
3) Come up with three different ideas to help other people
4) Write a letter to someone thanking them for their impact on you
5) Volunteer at your hospice, school, church, religious organization, mentoring program, or other community group