I was 28, divorced, finishing up my design degree. I saw a flyer on the bulletin board “Parsons School of Design Summer in Paris”.
I decided on the spot that I wanted to go to Paris. (Mel Robbins, “The Five Second Rule” would say it was because I saw the flyer and took action)
A few months later I was walking into the post office to pick up my passport.
It was months in the making, I had to take out a school loan, get a passport, pack up my apartment, sell my car, move - but I was moving toward something that empowered me and gave me tingles. Which is what happens when we are operating from a place of joy and purpose.
Important note: Without realizing it, I created a situation without a back door. Taking those steps to get the loan, apply for my passport, quitting my job and closing my apartment left me with nothing to fall back on. (Don’t think I didn’t have some serious freak out moments halfway across the Atlantic, but it wasn’t like I could just ask them to pull the plane over).
THIS IS HOW THAT HAPPENS …
Listening to that inner nudge
Noticing the thoughts that come up and
Accepting the feelings created
Taking massive action anyway
Because once you move through one hurdle, the others become easier
Not beginning with a “fallback” option
When we can let go of the things our brain tells us will be the cause of our ruin, and listen to the voice inside, wonders never cease.
The brain is incredible - it takes in the trillions of stimuli from all five senses, calculates their value based on historical data, puts it in the appropriate file and guides us down the safest possible path. Our survival is its #1 job.
Unfortunately, many times the data is put there by someone other than us. This is especially true in relation to our fears.
Often the things we imagine as obstacles are coming from inside our head, not outside of us.
The fascinating thing however is that if we take even the tiniest step within the first five seconds of a thought, we begin to retrain the brain. (Thank you, Mel)
I took one tiny step – walked into my dean’s office and asked about Paris. And one fine morning, six months later, I woke up there. I was forever changed
I fell in love. Yes, with the spellbinding magic of Paris, but also with me, with the person I truly was. No longer living by someone else’s definition of who I should be, I dressed differently, spoke differently, saw things differently. I became me.
And that is STEP #1 -Discover what lights you up.
Because that, dear ones, is the first secret.
Once you uncover that thing, or those things that give you tingles, write it down. Put it in front of you. Spend some portion of your day every day thinking about it, dreaming about it, asking your brain how you might take small steps toward it. And take small steps.
Don’t worry about a plan yet, just set your brain to work. It loves to answer questions. We just have to ask the right ones. (More on that at another time.)