It’s a marathon, not a sprint :)

One of the misconception I come across about growth, wellness and goals is the idea that one day, we’ll have “arrived”. There is no such thing in my opinion. I believe we are in a constant state of change, evolution, or degradation, depending on what one is doing. There is a constant movement to life, which is another reason for me to love dance so much, dance is life.
That movement can go in various direction, hard, soft, long, short, positive, negative. It never stops though. How we move defines the outcome: did we get the result we wanted, or not.
It appears that as we incorporate new habits we get to a certain level that feels more comfortable and closer to the top goal. I’ll agree with that. I believe in celebrating milestones for what didn’t exist in our life before and is now here thanks to work and dedication. That can go away very quickly if it’s not maintained though. So as we grow and incorporate new things in our lives, we still want to maintain what we want to keep.
In business it looks like this: retaining existing customers as well as developing new markets. A business will not thrive on just one of those, we need both dynamics to grow.
I’ll admit that some things get easier with time and productive habits incorporated in the past can become the new norm. It’s always in good form to check in friends and coaches about where we’re at. Feedback is the breakfast of champions!
I’ll embrace the idea of plateauing for short periods of time, taking a vacation and enjoying the view for a little bit. Then it’s back to work.
We have a whole childhood, and/or past lives depending on your spiritual system, to clean up and own. There is enough there to keep some of us busy for a while.
Then we have our own dreams and desires: what do we want most, why do we want it, how will we get there? That’s an endless source of opportunities to learn new things, to grow in other areas.
Are you planning on not dreaming anymore at some point? Will you check out from the dream train and settle for whatever has been accomplished so far? If the answer is no, then you know there will always be work, always a new habit to incorporate, always a new star to shoot for. That’s the yummy stuff in my opinion: the endless possibility of a dream life, for as long as I live 🙂
How about you? What’s your dream? How are you going to get there? Share below!

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!
Paola
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Patience

The beauty of the journey of personal development is that it’s unending. There is always something new to learn, always something to tweak.
As I journaled this morning, I realized that I need to work some more on my patience. I’m naturally passionate and eager, I love to make stuff happen, which are qualities I’m very proud of. Those character traits can also feed an impatient intention that is then counterproductive.

I went back to partner dancing in March of 2015 with one goal in mind: tango. As usual, I eventually got what I wanted, and then some. I wasn’t planning at the time to do it professionally but life has some invitations one simply doesn’t refuse. And I’m so glad I went with it.
In the process of becoming a dancer, an assistant teacher and a performer, I experienced the agitation, frustration and fears of not performing at the level I desired. I believe in excellence and delivering at a high level. I tend to forget that skills do require time to develop.
I compared myself (bad idea) to other dancers and my dance partner. I beat myself down regularly and experienced stress and fear due to it.
At the same time, I reminded myself of how much I had learnt in a short period of time, how fast I was learning,  and how dedicated and committed I was. that struggle took place for many months. I fluctuated from proud to ashamed, from satisfaction to frustration. As a cherry on the cake, I also projected those insecurities on my dance partner (sorry about that Darling). I’m delighted to report that after some work, and the help of my coach, I’m at a more comfortable level now. Although I’m fully aware of all the great work I have in front of me to become the dancer I want to be, I now go through the motion with faith and more patience. I know what I want, I know how to get there, it’s going to happen, eventually, period.

What I realized this morning is another area I need to practice patience in. Because I applied the process successfully with dancing, I can apply that process to other areas of my life. And I know I will be successful in those areas too, in time.
Patience is one element of the foundation of our dance teaching, right next to kindness.
We need to be patient, with ourselves and others. We must remember that we do our best, all the time, everyday. Growth takes time!

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!

Paola
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Next!

There is an upside and a downside to becoming aware, we’ll talk about the downside today: we become aware of the consequences of our actions. Why is it a downside? Become we need to own our decisions too, which is not always easy.

As long as we are unaware and we just react to what’s happening in life, we can be dismissive, we justify our actions conveniently and we disregard consequences. Becoming aware includes facing up. We’re no longer hiding behind our ego, which can be hard. We then know that the tough conversations do have to take place. We do want to live up to our full potential as a human being and we don’t want to regress. We’ve come that far after all, and going back is more painful than being there in the first place.

What I find really relevant in the state of awareness is when to call “Next”.
I’ve become in the last few years a dedicated networker. I’m all the more dedicated considering I’m a hard core introvert and I taught myself to network. Mingling requires energy and focus for me. I’ve worked hard at developing those skills and I’m all the more excited to use them often and successfully. I learnt to call “Next” after hours wasted listening to individuals showing up for themselves, meetings without the structure I was looking for or a group whose values, or food service, didn’t resonate with me. Regardless of the prestige or potential gain, I learnt to call “Next” to keep serving my authentic self, and therefore, offering to others the best version of myself at that time.
As I mentioned above, I have to own that too. I learnt to share why I no longer do business with some individuals, why I left the party, or the group, or how I felt about the food being served. And I did it in the most kind, non-judgemental and helpful way I knew at the time. That’s a lot of flipping work! And it’s so worth it!

Result? I’m the Queen of time management. I feel surrounded by love and appreciation, most, everywhere I go. And I can truly say that I’m living my purpose. I didn’t even used to give a crap about purpose 5 years ago. Comes to show anything is possible, if we reach for the stars instead of the gutter. That’s the upside of awareness: knowing anything is possible 🙂

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!

Paola
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Don’t you just love making lists?

I love making lists, it’s the over accomplisher, slightly OCD side of me. I make lists for groceries, to-do’s and fun stuff. I have a list of goals too! And it’s January so let’s talk about goals. Rather let’s talk about ONE goal.

Over 80% of individuals make resolutions every year, that they quit on by the end of January. Why? Resolutions are made to be quit on, compared to goals that are made to be achieved. I invite you to trash your list of resolutions immediately, if you’ve made one. Resolutions come out of frustrations, social pressures and guilt from over indulging during the holidays, that’s why they don’t stick. Your ego comes up with resolutions, your authentic self comes up with the goals.

Goals are dreams with a game plan attached, which makes them more likely to come to fruition. Goals also have a true intention.

For example, a lot of individuals will plan on losing weight gained thanks to Mr Cookie and Lady Champagne. Do we want to lose weight to be healthier? To please our mate? To fit the social standards? The intention will define the outcome. Making a decision based on what other people will think will likely bring resentment and frustration. Setting a goal based on our core belief will fuel us to meet, if not surpass, that goal.

We don’t always meet our goals, we need to tweak the game plan, and that’s alright. That’s part of the process of getting better at whatever we learn to do. Be kind to yourself, be patient. All successful individual have one thing in common: they don’t quit, when it gets hard.

I invite you to:

-Set ONE goal that resonates with your true self

-Make a game plan, measurable, achievable, rewarding

-Reevaluate and tweak as needed

-Treat yourself when you reach your goal (very important)

-Repeat

By setting one goal at a time, you’re more likely to stay focused and make better use of your energy and headspace.

Change is hard, it is achievable with the proper method and intention though. You can do it!

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!

Paola

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Where’s your power?

If you follow my blog, you already know that I purchased a new-to-me car a few months ago. She rocks my socks off and she’s been so good to me so far. One thing I learnt about used cars is that they develop some personality traits after a few years. So when my Sterling decides to flash one way or another, or the door doesn’t shut for 24 hours, I just let it go. It never lasts, she’s having a moment, that’s all.

Her moment the other day was to have the clock reset itself to zero. I put the clock back to the right time once, I let it go the second time. I reflected on why I need a clock in my vehicle when I already practice perfect timing, I’m never late and I have the time on my phone anyway.

I grew up in an hostile and violent environment. One of the consequences of that childhood as an adult is working towards staying away from unsafe environments  and developing some overly controlling tendencies. I work at letting stuff go,almost everyday.

The clock in my car only reminds me that it took me 30 minutes instead of 15 to get to my destination. It’s a constant reminder that it can be challenging driving around a million people metropolis.Sometimes the clock reassures me that I’m on time, that being said, I’m always on time. I’d rather focus on being confident rather than needing reassurance. The first is power, the second is passive.

Being reassured has it’s place, it can be important. In the case of time, and my clock, I don’t find it necessary.

So where is your power? Your power is in realizing what you can’t change and stepping into what you can change.

You can’t change the weather, people’s impression of you or the fact that you will die one day. I invite you to spend time as little time as possible on those items.

What do you have power over? Your attitude, your goals and the company you keep. I invite you to spend as much time as you’d like on those items.

So the clock in my car is blank, I now have more head space to focus on my purpose 🙂

Reach for the greatest version of yourself!

Paola

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