Life is full speed ahead! At 100mph it’s easy to get caught up in the “to do” list. The “honey do” list, the “chores,” hourly work appointments, kids sport, extracurricular activities, fitness training or heaven forbid your own health and wellness appointments. It is way to easy to go from one task to another, never thinking, never allowing enough headspace to process all you’ve done instead spending every minute of seemingly every day “being busy” jumping from one thing to another. Recently we were caught in the same trap. We did something that for many in the world of small business, is suicide. We took a break. Suddenly we were able to stop “do-ing” and start “Be-ing.”
“We Got Stuck In The World Of ‘What If'”
Almost 6 years of running our own business and only 2 weeks off work (once), one day off when each of the kids were born and a handful of long weekends throughout the 6 years. When we sent in motion plans to step away from Transitions for a month it was frightening. Will we be able to afford it? The office rent is too high, there’s the home mortgage, car & office fitout repayments. Will we loose clients? Will clients come back? What about our staff? We got stuck in the world of “what if.” Luckily though, we had already booked the flights so we had to start making plans. Apparently, I’m a pretty small fish in a pretty big pond. Regardless of what I do on any given day, the sun has this habit of rising the next day starting anew….. Easier to say in hindsight yet as little as 3 weeks prior I was thinking how could I get out of this trip? How could I cancel the whole thing, stay in my bubble, keep Do-ing everything, keep jumping from task to task exactly as I knew- the busy, safe, warm comfortable place that it is……
Thankfully along with Merissa, Cain, Peyton, my bike, 3 suitcases and carry on luggage, I packed up my anxiety and on June 26th boarded a flight for the start of an epic adventure that changed the course of not just my life but my family’s and potentially yours too.
The Spark Had Been Reignited!
Along the way we took a break from Do-ing and was able to BE. Be-ing me was awesome. I got my groove back and the spark had been reignited!!!! Left scratching wondering where did this all happen didn’t matter, I am so grateful that it did. That spark (or as Simon Sinek calls it The Why) is to live more of each day. Personally and professionally. Can Merissa & my tribe live the most of each day and at Transitions Chiropractic can we continue to help you live the most out of each day? It’s what we’ve coined here as Living life Without Limits and hopefully here I can provide a little guidance or inspiration to help you BE….
Body, Mind and Spirit
To live more of each day means experiencing the magic of each moment. Chiropractic as a lifestyle means we are finely tuned to our bodies and our surroundings. Our senses are heightened and engaged and there’s optimal connection between the brain, body and environment. Personally in an attempt to enhance my performance, brain body awareness and maximise my experience and enjoyment throughout my adventure I was adjusted the two days prior to departure, 4 times while overseas and then again the first week I was home. I didn’t have the time or energy to worry about being stressed out, not sleeping, in pain or dysfunctioning at any level. I wanted to have the best time possible and having a body, mind and spirit connected ready to embrace this opportunity was key in BE-ing me reigniting the spark.
But how to stop the DO-ing? It starts with taking care of the ancillary, unnecessary stress. Once this is gone we can BE. For me it was to BE on holidays, to BE in the moment and to absorb and experience everything I could. There were 6 key factors that helped me BE. Without these, I doubt I would be able to shine bright and ignite again. I believe these can be applied to every day, to each moment and I’d love you to try. BE right now and see if you can reignite your fire.
6 Key Factors:
(1) Trust In Strangers
If given a chance people can be and often will be awesome. It can be very easy to judge with a critical eye however, what if simply we went with “innocent till proven guilty.” I believe that people are inherently good and that has to be more than a belief. It has to be a practise. I received amazing random offers from people offering to drive, food tours of alaska (salmon & reindeer quesadillas, the 3rd best ranked pizza restaurant in all of America, even oyster tasting), leading me on hikes and generously opening up possibilities. I would have quite happily ate what I had already planned or driven myself yet I learnt to “say yes.” Trusting in the good will and nature of others meant suddenly I didn’t have to do everything solo. Drop the lone wolf approach and give people a chance to make your day better.
(2) Be Open
It’s great to have a plan, but what about the uncontrollable? Every and all situations have a truckload of “uncontrollables,” from how much traffic is on the road, what the weather is going to be, when will baby be born, when will baby learn to walk, can I get this appointment at this exact time etc. Life isn’t like following the ingredients and making muffins. Sometimes you have to substitute, to use what you have and what’s been given to you. Amazing things can come out of your kitchen of life if you use what is available. AS Mike Tyson says “everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face.”
(3) Step Outside The Comfort Zone
And try. Try something new, an adventure and experience or a new food. Trying something new is a fast track to what’s dubbed a flow experience- it’s a challenge, yet this can be enough to fully engage your brain and your senses in the moment. Diving into the cold water of Seward, Alaska was a complete shock to the system. I was really giving myself time and space to get used to it. Was it comfortable? No, but the shock and the cold forced me to focus on the goal, to swim the 3000m, one stroke at a time and that was just the start of the first of 3 consecutive races.
There was nothing comfortable about racing so close together, yet from the first race there was a clear challenge. The challenge, having time to train and developing a skillset somewhat matched to the task, knowing this had never been done before & the instant feedback really engaged my body, mind & spirit in the task. This effect of trying something new expanded my view of the world. What I thought was possible, what I liked what I enjoyed it’s different now. The only way to find out is to take that step….
(4) Lean On Friends & Family
If we trust in strangers then it’s no surprise that we should absolutely trust in those we love. This runs deep through every facet of relationships. Trust is the glue uniting relationships together stopping them from turning into Dys-relationships. Friends were true to their word in turning up, picking me up from airports and being there even when I got the hire car towed in Boston. Merissa and her family were always there to care for our two crazies- giving me time to travel and focus on racing. This further embedded the faith, confidence and belief that Merissa was always doing what was best for our littles.
There’s a relationship parable that talks about two villagers walking to a well to fetch buckets of water. If all is good both villagers, carry their own bucket and the load is spread evenly. Yet if one is tired, the other is there to help, to pick up the load. Ideally, one villager shouldn’t carry all the weight the entire time but they can absolutely help out when needed. Do you need help and will you trust your nearest and dearest to help you in times of need?
But what if they say no??? Well at least you know the answer…. Asking can be scary. It is somewhat akin to setting to stepping out on a tightrope trying to get to the other side of a gorge. We are open and exposed, yet if we never take that step there is no way of figuring out if we can get to the other side. If we trust people are inherently awesome then asking for help has huge potential for an amazing return. I asked for volunteers to help me out on race day. I asked them to support me during two of the events otherwise I could not have towed the start line. By asking, two out of 3 race directors gave me incredible discounts on race entry. I also received some amazing clothing, footwear and chiropractic care! If we never ask, we will never know what is possible.
(6) Be Where Your Feet Are
Ever noticed how switched on athletes can be the moment they step onto the field. This “white line fever” where every second, every ounce of energy is focusing on the game. The same is true when Iron Madien or Beyonce take the stage. Big moments are great at heightening our awareness of all that is around us. Yet we don’t just have to save this for the big moments. Being around strangers, in a new environment, not knowing where I was going or what was next, realising I need to pay attention. I had to listen, look and engage. Drop the phone, not check facebook or instagram and listen to who I was with and be present. To finish the swim before I could ride the bike, finish the run before I celebrated and finish one conversation before tuning in on another. There’s magic in the moment if we are present enough to be there….
Finding The Why
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi pioneered the concept of “flow” and he delves deep into it in his book called “Finding Flow.” It’s defined by 3 key characteristics, where the challenge at hand stretches your current skill and experience, there’s deep concentration in the task and there is immediate feedback of progress or performance. This past trip I was lucky enough and eternally grateful for having an almost prolonged or exaggerated flow state. I loved the moment I was in. I’d challenged myself physically and mentally and shifted many of my own preconcieved notions of what was possible.
Through doing this, challenging and exposing myself I’ve been able to shift focus, to reignite and spark passion to once again live and help others live more each and every day. We can all do this; finding our why, our purpose and see that life is there for living. As a Chiropractor (and a human), it’s my wish to help you be in tune with this amazing potential that is right there in the world around us. It’s my hope that you can engage with what is possible and live life to the fullest.
As adults we are always asked “so what do you do?” We do a lot yet unfortunately, this misses a big piece of the puzzle. It’s a small but significant shift. An adjustment from the neck up and in a childlike way there is more to this puzzle than what you “Do.” How you BE, what you want to BE” is key to keeping this whole thing glued together.
I want you to BE alive……