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Failure or Opportunity?

October, 30 2017 by Katie

I was driving to work one today and had an epiphany. I admit it was a little more like deja-vu as this wasn’t the first time I had this exact realization, but it still was an aha moment for me. The epiphany I am referring to is that events I filed under failure have really been signals to change my direction and move towards my true purpose in life.
Labeling moments as failures is like packing baggage filled with shame and guilt and negative feelings onto our shoulders.  What if instead of lugging around this heavy burden, we reframe these moments as an opportunity instead of a failure?  I think this would allow us to unpack some of this baggage and take the emotional pressure off of ourselves because it is truly exhausting to lug this negativity around. What if lightening this burden would free us to live the life of our dreams?
I have been a CPA for over 15 years and had my business for over 10.  It would be impossible to be in business this long without making a few mistakes!  Many times, I have been very hard on myself for these mistakes. I would torture myself with guilt and shame over how I was so stupid or careless.  But when I think about it, I realize all those mistakes were telling me something. They were saying ‘this isn’t your path’.   My mistakes have been like making a wrong turn when driving!  They were a sign to go a different direction or take a different road altogether.
These moments, were opportunities for discovery.  When I took time to reflect, I learned more about myself and what I should be doing.  I was able to determine which activities I find fulfilling and interesting.  Know what really fills me up, led me to focus how can I create more of those moments and let go of things that are a drain in my life.
When I started to listen to what my mind and body were telling me and made changes, I immediately saw improvements.  When you are working with the flow of your gifts and talents you feel a sense of ease in your day.  The energy comes easily.  You feel inspired, creative, energetic and joyful.  When I experience these feelings, I know I am on the right path and should keep moving in this direction.
If an activity continually leaves me feeling exhausted and drained, I know I need to re-evaluate this activity.   I always tackle projects quickly so I know if I am procrastinating or avoiding a task completely, it is a sign that I need to evaluate if I should even be doing this task.  Sometimes, I need to shift my mindset.  Sometimes, I need to approach the task differently or use a new tool or strategy.  And sometimes, I just need to delegate the task off my plate.  It is important to know when I am not the right person for the job!
Making changes isn’t all sunshine and rainbows.  As I made changes, there were also struggles.  One of the biggest changes I made was to create boundaries around my professional availability.  I wanted to make sure I gave myself the time I needed to stay fresh so I could create my best work.  However, when I made this change, there were some people who didn’t like the new way our relationship would work.  At times, I was tempted to just go back to how I had always done things, but I realized this growth was not only healthy for me, but vital for my business growth and success.  Like me, you may find some people don’t like the growth you experience and may decide to end their relationship with you.  Don’t fear, if you are moving in the right direction, closer to your true purpose, then making space in your life, will tell the Universe that you are ready for new opportunities. Trust that these new opportunities will be even better for you than those that were lost!
I frequently ask myself, if I hadn’t taken action and listened to the messages I was hearing, where would I be today? Life will always be complicated so don’t wait for things to get easier, simpler, or better.  You need to listen and trust the messages you hear. Today is your day to start making changes and move in a new direction.
Never stop growing!
What have you filed under failure that you need to reframe as an opportunity or sign to move in a new direction?
I am here to support you.
xx,
Katie

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