What Story Are You Telling Yourself?

Today I realized something that I believe has the potential to create big, scary, awesome ripples in my life.

I realized that a part of getting where I am today, a part of the happiness I feel as compared to the desperation I felt almost 2 years ago, comes from changing the story I had been telling myself about my life.

2 years ago, this was the story I told myself:

I was a “victim” of circumstance.
I wasn’t smart enough, innovative enough, or talented enough to go beyond the confines of a “safe life”.
I wasn’t as financially privileged as others who were able to “make it”, and I was “stuck” in a place I didn’t want to be, where I had no friends.
I wasn’t “good at communicating” in my personal relationships.

Today, I look back and can see that the story I was telling myself became a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Until I decided to turn it all around.

Until I decided to grow up and take responsibility for driving my life, instead of letting myself be driven by self-limiting beliefs.

Nowadays, the story I tell myself is light years away from the one I had crafted 2 years ago.

Nowadays, I am

grateful for the gift of family

loving the possibilities of continuous learning

amazed at the beauty of people

inspired by many to go out there and make a difference

humbled by how little I know, but hungry to learn more

Am I there yet? Have I reached the goals I am setting on a daily basis for myself (including becoming a change agent and success creator?)

Nope.

But I know I’m taking the steps needed to get there, and I am so excited about waking up every single day and taking one step closer.

The shift in mindset has made me a different person, and I’m still growing, every day a little more. I wonder what kind of positivity I can attract to my life by expanding the story I tell myself even more.

And now I want to ask for your help.
I am working on content that is relevant to YOU, that serves YOU, and that helps you achieve your goals. I want to provide value to YOU.

If this resonates at all with you, I invite you to take a moment and think about these questions:

  1. What story have you been telling yourself about your life?
  2. Does that story serve you, and serve the person you want to be?
  3. What aspects of your story could you change, and what parts of your life can you learn to appreciate and see in a different light?
    (For example, instead of saying “I’m not good at communicating”, can you say “I want to learn how to communicate better because I know I can improve and create more clarity in my life”? Or, instead of saying “I’m just not good with money”, can you say “I want to focus on learning how to manage my finances better, so I can feel more in control and be smart about my financial decisions”?)

With love,

Hala

What Do You Do?

Hello there. I have a question for you:

What do YOU do?

Wait!

You’re not allowed to say “I’m a web developer”, or “I’m a librarian”, or “I’m a photographer”, or “I’m a financial analyst”.

NO.

Stop for a moment and think – what is it that YOU do uniquely and amazingly and that brings meaning to your life?

If you are a web developer, what is it that YOU do? Do you kill it with amazing yet simple functionality that delights users?

If you are a photographer, how are your pictures uniquely about YOU? Do you have an ability to capture things and people in just the right light, creating photographs that reflect the soul of your subjects?

If you are a financial analyst, are you able to create reports that dazzle with accuracy and detail, while at the same time distilling the information in a consumable way?

If you are an administrative assistant, do you bring people together and fulfill their needs before they even know they have those needs?

I want to know, what is it that YOU do? (You want to know it too, because it is the only way to set yourself free and realize what your value and potential are!)

Will you share with me in the comments below? I am dying to know what it is that YOU do!

Sometimes You Just Have to Launch

Sometimes, you just have to trust your gut and do something you feel strongly about.

Sometimes, you just gotta launch.

It might end up being the least (or most!) exciting thing you ever do, but if you don’t try, you will never know.
Assuming you have done your homework, put in the time to learn, hone, and build a solid base, there comes a point where you need to gather up the courage to move forward.

Be willing to accept failures on your way to success.

But know that you will not succeed unless you:

  1. Learn to listen to, and live by, your authentic voice. (Who are you? What do you really care about? Are you doing the things that serve you and serve your passions?)
  2. Learn to care enough to give back. You will only expand who you are and your own possibilities for greatness by serving others, and doing good for those around you.
  3. Learn to tune out the “noise”. All the Are you crazies and But how will you be able to do thats and Are you seriouses in the world come from a place of fear. Don’t let others impart their own fear on you.
  4. Learn to recognize when something isn’t going well, and be willing to inspect your methods and course-correct.

I have been working on something that means a lot to me, and even though it is only a start, and it is something very small, I think I’m just about ready to start sharing it. It will only interest about 0.05% of the population, but that’s ok with me.

More details soon. (Don’t expect anything big) :)

Wish me courage!

(Thank you, Seth Godin, Bassam Tarazi, Marie Forleo, Laura Roeder, William Arruda, and all the other amazing and inspiring people who have been in my head and on my computer screen for the last few weeks.)

Psst! You’re a CEO and you don’t even know it!


Surprised? Confused? Think I’m nuts? (I may well be, but that is totally beside the point of this post!)

This post is about YOU.

Did you know that you, me, and everyone else are all CEOs? Isn’t that exciting? Entrepreneurship EXPLOSION up in here!

Have you heard of a little concept called Personal Branding, and the company called “Me, Inc.”?
In a nutshell, each one of us is (perhaps unknowingly) our own brand.
YOU have a very distinct set of qualities that make you unique, and you need to know what those qualities are in order to manage your brand.

I will say that again, because I  believe in the transformational power this statement has if you really take it to heart and internalize it:
You need to know what qualities you have that make you stand out, make you unique, and differentiate you from others.

These days, it’s not enough to be “good enough”, or even “very good” at what you do. Anyone can learn the basics of a job function and get the work done.

NOT everyone can do it the way you do it though. Not everyone can make that presentation sizzle with your artistic touches, not everyone can dig into technical details the way you can, not everyone can run a meeting as smoothly as you can, etc. etc.

Figure out what it is that makes you different, and WORK IT.

And no, it’s not enough to just know that “I’m good with numbers.” or, “I’m creative.” Get really, really, really specific, and then once you know what things make you stand out, make sure others know it as well.
There is so much power in specializing, and in being known for the very specific way in which you add value.

Read this from FastCompany.com. Here is an excerpt that I think is really helpful:

“Your next step is to cast aside all the usual descriptors that employees and workers depend on to locate themselves in the company structure. Forget your job title. Ask yourself: What do I do that adds remarkable, measurable, distinguished, distinctive value? Forget your job description. Ask yourself: What do I do that I am most proud of? Most of all, forget about the standard rungs of progression you’ve climbed in your career up to now. Burn that damnable “ladder” and ask yourself: What have I accomplished that I can unabashedly brag about? If you’re going to be a brand, you’ve got to become relentlessly focused on what you do that adds value, that you’re proud of, and most important, that you can shamelessly take credit for.

When you’ve done that, sit down and ask yourself one more question to define your brand: What do I want to be famous for? That’s right — famous for!”

The rest of the article has some great ideas on how to go through the exercise of figuring out what differentiates you and how to communicate that to the world. This should all give you PLENTY to work on this weekend, and come out of it with a strong sense of who you are, how you want to be perceived, and how you can be seen as indispensable by anyone who might have the privilege of receiving your work, your gifts.

Once you know what makes you special, and once you have honed your special skill enough that it is undeniable, you will have the freedom of being confident in your value. No longer will you need to hide behind what you think your employer or the workplace wants you to be, because your value is in who you actually are.

Allow this, as I have, to be the first step in the next phase of your personal growth. If nothing else, you will gain a clear vision of who you are today, and perhaps the things you want to work on to become the version of you that you want to be tomorrow.

Hopefully, though, you will gain much more than that, and will be able to tap into your power to own your success.

[blip.tv http://blip.tv/play/AYGgzj0C?p=1 width=”480″ height=”390″]

Some awesome resources:
http://www.williamarruda.com
http://www.personalbranding.tv/
http://www.thepersonalbrandingblog.com/

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