If you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything. . ~Peter Marshall
As we get older it often becomes clearer that there are certain things that are important to us that may have been trumped by responsibilities and survival in our earlier years. Busy building careers and/or raising families, there was little time left to reflect on what is important to us on a deeper level.
Studies have shown that having a purpose in life leads to a more fulfilling and happy life. When you are aligned with your core values and purpose in life, you are more in the flow. You are excited to wake up each day because there is something that is really important for you to do-something that sets your soul on fire. You feel as though your life matters and you truly can make a change in the world.
So what holds us back?
Here are some things that stop us from the full expression of ourselves and what we stand for:
- we are afraid of what people might think
- we don’t want to rock the boat
- we are not used to our voices being heard
- we are comfortable being in the background and afraid to have the spotlight shine on us
- we had to stay “invisible” because we were in an abusive household
- we don’t feel worthy
- we don’t believe people will listen
- we are overwhelmed and don’t know where to begin
- we are afraid
Sometimes we hold back because we don’t believe that we can make enough of a difference to as many people as we would like to but don’t let that stop you! Keep focusing on the ones that you can make a difference with-one at a time.
Whatever you can do to improve the world will build in momentum.
The Starfish Story
“While wandering a deserted beach at dawn, stagnant in my work, I saw a man in the distance bending and throwing as he walked the endless stretch toward me. As he came near, I could see that he was throwing starfish, abandoned on the sand by the tide, back into the sea. When he was close enough I asked him why he was working so hard at this strange task. He said that the sun would dry the starfish and they would die. I said to him that I thought he was foolish. There were thousands of starfish on miles and miles of beach. One man alone could never make a difference. He smiled as he picked up the next starfish. Hurling it far into the sea he said, “It makes a difference for this one.” I abandoned my writing and spent the morning throwing starfish.”
Where people get caught up is in believing that it has to be something huge in order to be significant. In truth, what you stand for can be as big as finding a cure for a disease or as (seemingly) small as making a difference in the life of a child, or an elderly person, or a Veteran, or anyone who needs help. All of these purposes are, in fact, huge.
Has someone ever done something kind for you and it made you feel so great that you wanted to “pay it forward”- to give someone else that lovely feeling that you felt – the feeling that someone cared about you? That spreads love out into the universe. It is both simple and profound.
I was just at a gathering where one of the women was passionately talking about finding a cure for Lyme disease. She has been afflicted by this insidious disease for over 10 years. Through frustration and tears she explained how this disease ravages the body and is often not diagnosed until it is far too late. Her frustration was evident as she explained how the medical profession does not address this disease in a way that will help find a cure. In fact, she believes that the highly regarded Dr. that has become the “authority” on this disease has mislead the public in a way that is devastating to those afflicted. It is her compelling purpose to shed light on this so that others will understand this disease better. It is her mission in life to spread awareness to help find a cure for this disease. She has fire in her eyes when she talks about this.
However she has become beaten down by the 10 year fight against the “medical authorities ” who have turned a deaf ear. She feels as though no one is listening.
However, we were listening. All of the women in the room with her listened with their hearts wide open as she shared her story. She helped us to see the agony of what it is like to have Lyme and the futility of fighting against a medical bureaucracy that is set in its ways and sadly, sometimes turns a deaf ear to the people it is supposed to serve.
She told us that she felt as though people weren’t listening or were tired of listening and that sometimes it wears on her-this battle. Between feeling exhausted by this disease and pounding against doors that wouldn’t open she felt depleted…..
I saw something different. I saw a woman who will change the world- a woman who already has changed mine. She has forever changed the way that I look at this disease. She has opened up my eyes. If she keeps doing this it will have a ripple effect and will serve the people who she is meant to serve-people with this disease and their families. Frankly, screw the naysayers or ones who won’t hear her. Those are NOT the ones she is meant to serve! It was crystal clear to me what she stands for!
So what do you stand for? Start by asking yourself these 3 questions:
- What do you feel strongly about?
- What would you like to improve in the world?
- What are you willing to go out on a limb for?
For me, I stand for empowering women so that they can express themselves through a life lived with joy, passion and purpose. It is something that excites me to no end-to see the transformation that women make in their lives through coaching.
I also stand for a” live and let live philosophy” where people have a right to express themselves fully. I stand for equal rights for everyone. I stand for championing women. I stand for Motherhood. I stand for my daughters and future generations of women. I stand for a life lived by design-not default. I stand for leading from the heart. I stand for peace. I stand for women sharing their voice…..
I ask you again, what do you stand for? I would love to hear more about you in the comments below.
Cheers to You and Your Brave Soul,
P.S. If you would like to learn more about Lyme Disease, please contact Enid Haller, PHD at MVlymecenter.org
P.S.S. If you need help getting serious about what you stand for-let’s set up a discovery session. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org