I spent last week with 20 amazing women, who are also in the entrepreneurial world, in a beautiful house in Vermont. We cooked amazing meals together, exchanged our life stories, shared our dreams for 2014, worked away on our computers to keep the juices in our individual businesses running smoothly, went on walks through the snow, skied, and had a totally goofy talent show (way to step out of my comfort zone). It was amazing and inspiring to be surrounded by women who are also pouring their time, energy, money, and trust into creating their soul’s work.
I believe that surrounding yourself with people who share your vision, inspire new ideas, and motivate you through the challenges that seem toughest is the very first -and most powerful- step in actively creating a life you love. It’s even greater if some of these people are ahead of you in the game because it will accelerate your process.
One evening four of us ladies were immersed in deep conversation sharing what we had coming up, when one of my new friends asked me “What do you need?”
My mind suddenly got flooded with dozens of possible answers, BUT none of them were concrete actionable things. As I was checking in with my body, I realized that I was a little bit embarrassed that I couldn’t answer this question readily. It seemed simple enough What do I need? I knew what I wanted in the big scheme of things, but I never broke down what I needed from other people into specific action-steps. So here I was with the kindest soul of a woman in front of me, holding out her hand, asking me what I needed. And I didn’t have a clear answer.
I told her that I had to think about this because I was clear on my vision, my big goals as well as the mini-steps I personally had to take to get there. But I wasn’t prepared to answer what specifically I needed from other people.
Later that night as I reflected on the conversation, I realized something about myself that I also see in so many other women in my personal circle as well as in my coaching business: we think that we have to do everything on our own. While we deeply desire support, we are not clear on how -specifically- we need to be supported to make our goals and dreams come true. Therefore, dreams of being fully supported in all areas of life stay exactly that: dreams.
One of the biggest hurdles in overcoming this confusion about what we need specifically to feel supported, is our fear that we will appear demanding, selfish, or overbearing. That people will retract if we need them (instead of only give to them). That our vulnerabilities will make us look weak and unattractive.
We forget that the right relationships bond, tighten, and flourish when there is a healthy exchange of giving and receiving. This is true for all relationships -romantic, friendships, business, and your relationship with yourself.
Today’s challenge is two-fold:
1) Write down what you need. Be specific.
For example, if you want to like your job more, ask yourself: “What specifically do I need?” It might be an additional assistant or intern. It might be more time off. It might be more fun and time with friends when you are not working. Who can help you implement your needs?
Another example would be, if you want to feel more supported by your boyfriend or husband, ask yourself “What do I need? How specifically would I like to be supported by him?” You might find out that you need him to go to the grocery store more often or take charge of the electronics in the house. Or you might find out that you two have to hire a cleaning service to take off some pressure and carve out more time for you two to play.
2) Ask someone else what they need.
Think of someone who frequently gives to you, even if they seem like they’ve got it all figured out on their own, and ask them what they need. Even if they don’t have an answer ready for you, you can let them know that you’d be happy to help them meet their needs.
In essence, begin this process of giving and receiving help, support, and love. This is what elevates already good relationships to excellent ones. This is what will majorly help you be happy and succeed in life!
Speaking of Success and Happiness, my friend and life coach Jennifer Racioppi and I are hosting a FREE tele-class together on Thursday, January 30th at 8pm EST/ 5pm PST called HOW TO CREATE MORE HAPPINESS AND SUCCESS IN 2014. It will be filled with amazing tools to help you make 2014 an amazing year!
Make sure you sign up here to reserve your spot (sign up even if you cannot make it live, we'll send you the recording afterwards!)
In the comments below, I’d love to hear from you: What specifically do you need in your life in order to feel supported and thrive?
With love & warmth,