“Clipped wings I was a broken thing, had a voice, had a voice, but I could not sing, you would wind me down, I struggled on the ground, oh.
So lost, the line had been crossed, had a voice, had a voice, but I could not talk. You held me down, I struggle to fly now.” These are the lyrics from Sia’s song “Bird Set Free”. Those words describe a point in my journey I never want to revisit. Who was keeping me down? The answer is me. There is no one who has been harder on me, than me. Too often, I tell myself I do not deserve better and I don’t allow myself to move towards what is best for me.
When I was going through coaching school, and I was being coached by other coaches in training, I was asked what I wanted. It took me trying on several other words to name what I wanted. I did not arrive there immediately. After being asked several times, the word that surfaced was “freedom”. I wanted to be free. I wanted to write, and say, and paint what I wished, freely. In those days, I spent a lot of time being what others wanted me to be. As I start my business again, I am doing it with a greater level of freedom. In order to help others that are stuck, I have to continue to set myself free to be the creative force that I feel I was meant to be.
Here are some habits I have been developing:
1. Simplicity. Over the last 10 years I have downsized, getting rid of about 80% of the stuff that took up my space and ate away at my time. This gave me more freedom.
2.Worked in jobs that light me up. I have always worked with kids. They are a known source of inspiration in my life. This has also allowed me to use my creativity at work. We spend most of our lives at work. Work should be living.
3.Engaged in proactive self-care. I summarized some of what I learned from the research on the topics of happiness, resilience, longevity, and flow in my book Promising Connections and Creative Discoveries. Play and creativity are often overlooked when we think of wellness, but that is a mistake. It is also important to have the right connections to succeed. Here are promising connections that are validated by research that can not only make you feel better, but also help you be better. How are you doing in these areas?
Connected with your loved ones in a meaningful way
Felt like what your are doing has purpose
Learned from an experience
Stayed hopeful when faced with an obstacle
Practiced mindful care of your body
Wrote in a journal
Accepted and anticipated change
Worked towards a goal
Made time to do something fun that had no particular purpose
Did a random act of kindness
Noticed the extraordinary beauty in nature or in your surroundings
Appreciated something uniquely beautiful about yourself
Created something new
Became immersed in an activity
Lived fully in your moments and enjoyed the immediate experiences
Expressed and accepted love
Followed your bliss
Moving forward, I am going to write on each one of these and how you start to create habits. These all hold great power to make your life happier, healthier, and fuller. As a coach, I can help you make a plan and hold you accountable to work the plan that will make your life better not just on a dream board but through intentional mindful actions. I am an action oriented coach. I want people to live their best lives and I love partnering with people to help them realize their goals. Warning: I don’t work with people that want to whine, but are ready to win. You don’t need a coach for whining. Call a friend for that.
We all want to be healthier, more at peace, and more productive.
Are you stuck? What do you want? What do you really want? Are you like me? Do you want freedom? What does freedom mean to you? Are you willing to experience some discomfort, some moments of imperfection, failure even, in order to reach for greater freedom? Freedom comes at a cost.
“I don’t care if I sing off key, I find myself in my melodies. I sing for you, I sing for me. I shout out like a bird set free.” Bird Set Free lyrics by Sia.
As we approach the Fourth of July and meditate on freedom, I hope you will consider taking steps towards your own personal freedom.
If you want to schedule an initial session with me for $50 there is still time to do that until August. After that I will return to my normal rate of $125 per session. Contact me at email@example.com to set up an appointment.