There has been one theme popping up a lot for me lately – with my bootcampers and clients and with my own mentors too… within the books that I find myself reading and amidst the soul-searching I’ve been doing in regards to what are, and how best do I share, my greatest gifts.
As I sift through feedback from my clients and as I analyze where I have seen the most radical positive changes in my own life and businesses… this one indisputable truth seems to be screaming at me to be acknowledged. It is this: all big wins (in business, and in life) require embracing and mastering the Leap of Faith.
Since an early age, I have been sort of naturally good at this in some areas of my life (starting new businesses, taking financial risks, travelling to or moving to foreign places, making big, controversial decisions) and I have been absolutely rubbish at it others (trying new things that I fear will make me look stupid, trying new physical challenges, etc.) – notice how ego-driven all these things are! Eek!
But for better or worse, I have noticed there exists this extreme conflict between ‘thinking big’ and the undeniable truth that:
Our belief in what’s possible, is totally defined by what has already been. Our belief in what we can do is constrained by what we have done…
By what we’ve seen & experienced… by what we’ve been given and what has been taken from us. This makes hope easy, but makes faith really, really complicated.
The difference between ‘hope’ and ‘faith’
We humans, we are very imaginative creatures. We might be able to daydream or dreamboard our ‘perfect life’ or ‘perfect partner’ or perfect job like champs, but if, in the background, we worry that this dream is a fantasy, that it is totally independent from what can actually, really occur, it will stay a fantasy. If we don’t learn skills for taking “I wish” into “I have or I can” – if somewhere in the recesses of our subconscious there is that still small voice shouting ‘dream all you want loser, that will never happen’ – then our dreams end up falling significantly short of what we had hoped.
Our version of ‘thinking big’ remains blind, unsubstantiated HOPE instead of FAITH supported by action…
stays a vague desire for what we’ll be given, instead of a powerful BELIEF in what we can do. See the difference?
Let’s explore how this pattern shows up…
If we hope we’ll lose weight, instead of believe we have what it takes to follow a plan to lose weight… We will lose 5 lbs instead of 30.
If we hope ‘mr. or mrs. right now‘ will improve over time, instead of passing on ‘good enough’ and having faith that ‘mr. or mrs. right‘ is still out there, we set ourself up for relationship tragedy.
If we start a business and hope that by going through the same motions the same way everyone else does… instead of believing in our unique story and sharing it with all who will listen, we will find overwhelm and debt instead of fame and fortune.
Sound familiar? See where I am going with this? We limit ourselves based on what we believe is, or is not possible.
If you TRULY BELIEVE that the your dreams are possible, you simply will not settle for less.
Now, some of these beliefs are TRICKY. We don’t even realize we HAVE them! (most of these nasty buggers are simply cultural programming) For example:
“I can be rich or I can be a good person… not both”
“I can be famous and have admiring fans, but I just need to lose weight first”
“I can have a high-paying career or my own business, but not both”
“I can be feminine and friendly or I can be a strong, successful business women, but not both”
“I can take time to do what I want after I sort out what everyone else needs”
“Smart people don’t take big risks. I am smart, so anything risky is off the table”
All of these limiting beliefs keep us quiet and passed over, and keep our life very, very small.
How about those insidious beliefs we don’t actively consider… These are things that may tick through our brain and then we automatically answer: “that’s impossible” “I can’t do that” or “that’s not an option”- but if we push further and ask WHY it’s impossible or non-negotiable, we have no good answer! We just feel like we need ‘permission’ – we feel like it is just TOO BIG – we feel like it would be much easier / safer / more simple to do nothing and to stop asking such troublesome questions!
This is FEAR.
Fear of standing out. Fear of the unknown. Fear of trying and failing. Fear of losing security. Fear of change. Fear of being copied or ripped off. Fear of judgement. Fear of SUCCESS even!!
All this icky fear is clouding up seriously valuable headspace.
Not to mention, most of this fear is SO powerful, it keeps us from even asking the difficult questions to begin with! Then ‘choices’ are often made for us, or just ‘happen’ by default because we don’t acknowledge them or can’t decide, like:
“Why do I live where I live – what could I gain by moving, re-locating to another city, state or country?”
“What does it mean to be a ‘insert title of whatever you identify yourself as’ – could I redefine it for myself, do it my way?”
“What if I just totally started over?”
“If I took this risk, what is the worst that could happen? Would I survive?”
No. For most of us, barring huge traumatic events, we rarely ‘go there’ – it’s just too uncomfortable. It usually takes our whole WORLD being tipped upside down before we are brave enough to even ASK these questions, let alone answer them.
So, how do we break through these limitations?
Well if you’re like most people, on your path from ‘hope’ too ‘faith’ you’ll probably start by reading self-help books, taking online courses or engaging in groups that support the big questions you’re pondering at the moment.
Do your research. Part of making a successful leap of faith is being informed.
Eventually, your journey is going to lead you to a place where you decide hire a person – a coach, guru, a therapist…. their job title doesn’t matter.
You’re going to get sick and tired of where you’re at, or of the transformation taking so long… and you’re going to seek out a mentor.
You’ll be looking for accountability, expert advice you can trust, support you can count on, and let’s be honest, you’re probably hoping for a bit of magic too!
When you find this person, the process of working with them is likely to go one of two ways:
The first way: You open yourself up to the process, believe this person can help you, do the work they ask of you… and you might have a major breakthrough… you know, the ‘light pouring down from heaven, angels singing’ kind of stuff – or it might be more subtle – like several small, barely perceptible shifts that allow you to move forward so naturally you forget the pain you were in when you started… you just look back you go ‘huh! Whaddya know, I am in a totally different place that I was two months ago, how did that happen?’
The second way: You panic about the investment or you don’t commit the time to your transformation (because let’s be honest, guru’s usually don’t come cheap and they will probably make you work your ass off!) Because of this ‘on the fence’ mentality, you find yourself resisting the work, struggling to connect with your own ideas or desires and you feeel really out of sync with the whole process. With some hard graft, you will probably still accomplish some tasks but there is no major ‘ah ha’ and when you look back – nothing significant has changed and you feel even more pain because you’re miffed about the investment!
What is the key difference?
Well of course there are a lot of circumstances to consider – and certainly plenty of excuses one can make, but in my experience there is only one difference between these two paths…
In the first scenario:
you allow yourself to be open and receptive to having your core beliefs expanded.
This is most-often based on having serious levels of trust and respect for the mentor – both as a person and for the results they have achieved previously for you, themselves or others. You BELIEVE that they will GUIDE YOU to the place you desire to go and most importantly,
it is this belief that allows you to tap into your own reservoir of magic, brilliance and inspiration.
No one can force you to have a breakthrough. No one can force you to feel inspired… Only YOU can get there… but it often takes the coaxing of another person you believe is ALREADY THERE to give you a leg-up.
Leap of Faith
My favorite ‘Leap of Faith’ metaphor is that epic scene from Indiana Jones ‘Last Crusade’…
Our hero comes to the edge of vast and deep cavern – he cannot see the bottom – only a doorway on the other side. He reads: “Only in the leap from the lion’s head will he prove his worth”
“It’s impossible” he says, staring out into certain death. “It’s a leap of faith” he recites – as if trying to convince himself it is only a test.
In the background you hear his dad saying “you must believe boy, you must, believe!”
He puts his hand on his chest, slowly lifts his leg and steps out into the abyss………………………
And he doesn’t fall, he stands! On an invisible bridge! He still can’t see it, but he’s walking on it!
It’s not until he gets to the other side does he throw a handful of sand back over the unseen walkway – which now, from this new angle, from this place of achievement, looks so damn obvious! How did he not see it?
One of the greatest gifts life experience gives us, is the ability to expand our belief in what is possible…. it has to be possible, because all of a sudden, we’ve done it!
It is only in retrospect do we look back and think… “what was I waiting for” and what a giddy feeling that is!
One of the greatest gifts our coaches & mentors give us, is the gift of ‘borrowed belief’ in what’s possible – faith we can hold on to until we get out on that bridge on our own two feet!
We have to take that leap to get to the faith. That sickly, gut-wrenching sure-death leap into the unknown. We have to TRUST and we have to DO THE WORK.
Wonderful, beautiful things just start happening to us when we hold open the belief that they CAN HAPPEN to us.
All of this leads to one obvious, important point…
Choosing the right mentor is key. Its importance cannot be overstated. You need to be able to metaphorically trust this guide with your life in order to let them PUSH YOU. In order to get results. So do choose this person carefully (checklist below to help you with this process) – like picking any other professional or expert in your life, you need to ensure that you feel a ‘click’ and again, do your research!
Coaching and mentoring is largely NOT about the results themselves (although they are a critical part of the process and they make very nice side effects) – what matters is that you’re able to make enough progress together to upgrade your core belief around what is possible.
At all stages of life and business, results vary. You have good days and bad, money comes and goes… you win some you lose some, but
No one can take away your fear away, and on the contrary, no one can rob you of your expanded belief in your own possibilities.
No one can take away from you the faith (not hope, but faith) that you genuinely CAN ACHIEVE anything you desire…and once you’ve stepped up a level… you’re ready for the next level!
When you search for your guru or mentor, make sure that what they’re selling is transformation, not just results. Look for this in the testimonials – big wins and big turnarounds…
look for happy clients who feel empowered to replicate results on their own
The real reason that smart, successful people hire increasingly more expensive coaches/consultants (I am not talking about scam artists here, I am talking about legit, credible mentors) and invest in more and more comprehensive ‘masterminds’ and ‘retreats’ – is because by doing so, by making a financial commitment that represents the results we want to achieve, or the lifestyle we’re working towards – we are quite literally putting down a deposit on what we think is possible. As we build our own faith, we search for mentors who can push our boundaries – part of that push is by working with people we feel have achieved what we want to achieve, and part of that push is a financial one.
It’s like a drug.
If you’re hiring someone you feel to be ‘affordable’ or ‘cheap’ guess what you’re likely to get when you work with them? A big ol’ dose of someone else’s limited belief in what’s possible. This isn’t always true (especially in group models, or when you’re just hiring someone to learn a particular skill rather than to push you to the next level in life or business) but generally, the people who charge more do so because they are in demand – they have slowly raised their pricing over time as their belief in what is possible has expanded.
Their new normal might be something that seemed like a dream to them years ago, but now they’ve achieved it – the benefit of that to you, is that although it now costs more to work with them, not only are you learning the strategies and philosophies of someone who is now in demand (always wiser than learning from someone who isn’t!) but you are trusting and opening yourself up to someone who probably has expansive, abundant beliefs about what YOU can achieve –
If you trust them, it’s hard to not get caught up in their powerful truth, that you can accomplish miraculous things!
Of course, it’s important to mention that this applies to all areas of your life – not just business. If you invest in a health coach to help you lose that weight you’ve been hanging on to for years – your belief in what is possible expands and suddenly EVERY AREA of your life benefits.
Ok, then, you ready?
Identify the one thing that would make the most difference to you right now if you could fix it, change it, upgrade it or complete it (make sure it’s realistic – not like ‘save the earth’ or ‘be 6 inches taller’ – as much as we may want those things – let’s start with things we can actually control!)
- Go to Facebook: Right now. Defy your fears and tell us in the group WHAT that thing is – declare it! Own it!
- Then, make it your goal for the month of April to seek out the very best person or program that will help you accomplish this, your most critical goal. Don’t even consider price at first – seek out the best of the best of the best and make an appointment, schedule a call, get to know them and their process.
- Once you identify WHO this person or program is – find out a price for it – create a plan to pay for it. You may need to save for a year to do so – but create that plan. Determine what you’re willing to sacrifice to pay for it. Start a countdown until day one begins. Ask for work to prepare!
No more settling. It’s time to check this one off the list. Seek out the VERY best and align yourself with them. It is a universal law of nature that ‘like attracts like’, and you will almost immediately start to see the benefits of this leap of faith.
Oh and one more thing… This GENIUS video:
(you got to jump! You got to take that gift that’s packed away on your back and you got to jump off that cliff and pull that cord… At some point in time you got to see what livin’s like! )
and this AMAZING quote was shared by one of our Working with Dog members, and it was TOO PERFECT to not include here. It’s printable if you want to download it and put it up all over your office / home like she did when she was preparing for her for her work in the Million Dollar Dog Brand program.