Today’s blog is excerpted from my newest book, a completely revised and updated 10th anniversary edition of Supercoach: 10 Secrets to Transform Anyone’s Life.
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‘Don’t cut the person to fit the cloth.’
In these pages, we’ll be taking a deep dive together into the largely uncharted waters of the human potential. We’ll be focusing less on ‘how to live’ than on a new understanding of how life works – an understanding that will lead to your taking new actions in your life and appreciating new possibilities in the lives of the people you care about most.
The foundation of that dive is exploring what’s true for all human beings, regardless of their upbringing or circumstances. When we can really see what we have going for us (and what we’re up against) in the realm of creating results, high performance, and a life well‐lived, we can point others to that same potential (and those same obstacles) in themselves.
So perhaps the most effective way to use this book would be to read through it cover to cover, then go back and spend a week or so playing with the ideas in each session. But then again, perhaps not.
Each person is unique, and the value you’ll get from reading this book will be found more in the insights it provokes than the actual content or exercises. In other words, you may get everything you need in one reading, but if you find yourself wanting more, it’s designed to stand up to deeper inspection and introspection.
One of the many things that emerge from this kind of reflection over time is a clearer sense of what’s on offer, codified into three objectives that build on one another to make for a truly wonderful life…
1. To come alive to the magnificence inside us
For the past few years, my business one‐liner has been ‘Unleashing the human potential with intelligence, humor, and heart.’ While the ‘intelligence, humor, and heart’ bit is perhaps self‐explanatory, I always find it interesting that the idea of ‘human potential’ is both widely accepted and largely underestimated.
In his foreword to The Inside‐Out Revolution, my friend and mentor Dr George Pransky talks about it like this:
Everyone experiences times of mental clarity and wellbeing, even moments of out and out genius. Even in the extremes of mental illness, every single patient has moments of ‘normalcy’ independent of the severity of their disorder. At a more personal level, we have all come up with inspirations and solutions that seem to have shown up out of nowhere to save the day. At times, our children’s wisdom goes way beyond their level of education and life experience. And we consistently see high levels of wellbeing, grace, and hopefulness emerge in times of crisis such as floods and earthquakes, and even with people informed of terminal illnesses. So it should be equally obvious that the human potential for life enjoyment, mental clarity, creativity, and relationship satisfaction is considerably higher than we are manifesting in our everyday lives.
As we come alive to our ‘inner spark,’ we start to move through the world with greater ease and a less conditional sense of confidence and wellbeing. While our life circumstances may still seem messy from time to time, people can’t help but notice a twinkle in our eye and a lovely feeling in our presence. Here’s how I go on to describe it in the book:
Some people describe this transformative shift as moving from riding a roller coaster to floating in a river; others as the gift of meeting themselves for the first time. ‘It’s as if I’ve been plugged back into the mains,’ one client said to me. By far the most common description is some variation on the feeling of coming home after a long time away. While your experience will be unique to you, the awakening of your inner spark and a feeling of reconnection with the energy of life are part of the promise and purpose of our time together.
2. To go beyond our psychology
I had a friend who trained as a traditional psychologist but developed a somewhat unusual premise: that every human being has a personal psychology, and that all personal psychologies are inherently neurotic and insecure. While I didn’t necessarily agree with her conclusions about what to do about it, I don’t dispute the premise.
Our ‘psychology’ in this sense is a catch‐all phrase for the sum total of our habitual thinking – what might in other contexts be called our personality, our conditioned self, or our ego. And there are a few things that seem to me to be true across the board about our psychology:
- we all have one and get caught up in it from time to time
- a certain amount of the thinking we have could accurately be described as ‘neurotic’ and/or ‘insecure’
and most importantly:
- we are not our psychology – we are the thinker, not the sum total of our thoughts.
And it is this last point that points us toward a different way of being with our psychology:
If I am the thinker, not the thoughts, then I don’t have to overcome or ‘fix’ my thoughts and feelings. They will come and go as all ephemera do.Click To Tweet
And in noticing the temporary nature of my thought‐created story of my past and my thought‐created future hopes and fears, I also begin to notice that which is constant and unchanging – the inner spark and wisdom within that make up the human potential.
3. To create cool stuff in the world
When we don’t create to sate our psychology but to satisfy the incredibly human urge to facilitate the divine creative force taking form, it’s remarkable how much we can actually get done without exhaustion, stress, or pressure. And when we take things one step at a time without feeling the need to bite off more than we can chew (or do more than we’re capable of doing and control more than we’re actually in control of), it’s remarkable how many of those steps take us far further than we imagined they would.
One of my favorite descriptions of what happens when you begin to live from a deeper understanding of life is what I often talk about as ‘effortless success.’ ‘Effortless,’ in this instance, isn’t about an avoidance of physical work; it’s about an absence of mental struggle. Happiness leads to success, wellbeing leads to inspiration, and success and inspiration become the basis for an ever more wonderful life.
At some point, people come to see that creating effortless success isn’t magic (although it certainly is magical) – it’s the natural result of approaching life from a place of profound wellbeing, listening for the inner call, and following it wherever it leads.
In the words of Henry David Thoreau:
If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
So let’s look directly at you for a moment. Are you:
- Struggling to move forward? Moving forward by struggling?
- Experiencing wonderful results and happy accidents but secretly worrying about when the magic is going to stop, when the batteries are going to run out, or how you’ll ever be able to apply this to ‘the big stuff’ in your life?
- Living life at peace in yourself (mostly), but wondering if and when you’re ever going to get in the game and make your dreams come true?
Wherever you currently are, you can use the 10 sessions in this book to assist with your transition – from struggle to ease, from ease to peace, and from peace to power. As you set your direction, rest in wellbeing, and listen for the whispers of your own inner wisdom, you’ll be amazed by how easy that transition will be.
With all my love,
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