Tuesday, February 3, 2009

What Are You Ordering in the Restaurant of Life

A note from peter@thewealthyattitude.com for Wednesday February 4 2009

Good day there all and welcome to the midweek point.

I know you join me in thanking Jan Janzen for her offerings this "Procrastination Week".

Jan really has set a new precedent here with her generous involvement. When you look at the statistics of how many of us have dropped our resolutions and intentions for the new year before Valentine's Day, it is refreshing to have someone compel us to re-visit our goals.. Jan's contribution certainly does that.

A few subscribers chatted with me personally yesterday about what they were learning from Jan's "readers". What they had in common was that they all wanted to share what they read with their friends. So, in response, we've now added a "Tell a Friend" button on the blog where you can now easily share the message with folks you'd like to receive it. Now that's convenient.

So, let's get to Jan's midweek offering.

What Are You Ordering in the Restaurant of Life
by Jan Janzen

How many times have you sat in a restaurant and stared at the menu? You go over it again and again but you just can´t decide what you want to order. You finally decide on the chicken pasta salad but your companion orders steak and lobster. When the meals arrive, the boring chicken pasta salad lacks any pizazz beside the juicy steak and succulent lobster served with garlic butter. You now realize that you really wanted steak and lobster. You just didn't have the clarity to order it.

We do that all the time in life. You really want the first-class plane ticket to Bali and a month´s holiday at a fabulous spa. Instead you take a coach seat to Winnipeg and go visit cousins. You really want to buy the $250 dress at the boutique that makes you feel like a million dollars. Instead you go to the final clearance sale at the mall and pick one up for $39 that fits okay.

Clarity is critical. Many of us were trained from childhood to be vague about what we wanted because we were actually disciplined or punished when we got “too demanding”. It was considered fine to say that we were hungry but if we spelled out exactly what we felt like eating, Mom probably looked at you and yelled something about not being your servant or waiter! When you said that you wanted to be a nurse or a teacher, most parents didn't ask you to get clear about what that looked like for you. Did you want to be a nurse in intensive care or in obstetrics? Did you want to be a Science teacher at a high school or a kindergarten teacher? When we did get clarity, we were often told to not be “so picky, opinionated or demanding”.

Consequently, clarity when it comes to our New Years Resolutions is often lacking. It doesn't mean you need to know all the how-to's because you don´t. But it does mean you need to be clear about what you want as the end result.

Perhaps you made as a New Years Resolution the goal of eating healthier. What does healthier really mean? Some people think that drinking Diet Coke instead of regular Coke is healthier. Other people would take that to mean a completely organic diet and others would clarify that as meaning that they ate 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. Are your goals clear enough so that you will know when you have arrived at them?

A good question to ask yourself is: If someone else read my New Years Resolutions, would it be obvious to them what I wanted?

Let´s say that you want to be a millionaire by the time you are 50 years old. Does that mean that you will have $1,000,000 in the bank in cash, assets worth a million dollars or some combination of? Is that goal to be reached by your 50th birthday or in your 50th year?

Does any of this matter? I believe yes. I view the Universe like that restaurant. What would happen if you finally decided on the pork chops but five minutes later you told the waiter that you now really wanted the chicken salad because you know you should be eating healthier? But ten minutes later, you decide that you are only going to feel rich if you act like you´re rich and so you change your mind and order the steak and lobster. However, as it gets closer to the dish being served, you start to worry about how you are really going to pay for it and you quickly order a tuna fish sandwich instead.

What kind of bedlam would you have created in the kitchen of that restaurant? You would probably be asked to leave the restaurant without getting a meal. You´d have wasted a lot of time and energy and come out with nothing except an empty stomach. So now think about the Universe, our partner in co-creation. You start off by saying that you want to lose 25 pounds. But then as it gets harder to stick to the diet, you decide that maybe 10 will be good enough. Then you try on a pair of pants and oh my goodness, they don´t even slide over your hips, never mind being able to do up the zipper. You firmly decide that you really need to lose at least 20 pounds. A few weeks later, you get invited to a party and faced with all that delicious food, losing 15 pounds seems more realistic.

The Universe, your body, and your subconscious mind are now so confused by what you really want and what they need to do to get it for you, everybody throws in the towel and you forget about losing the weight because it just seems so hard to do. No kidding!

Do you see where you do this in your life? Stop it. It won´t get you what you want and it will get you a real messy life full of uncompleted goals and dreams. You can do better than that with some real clarity.

Jan is a “classic” entrepreneur, coach, healer and author of two books including her latest release, Getting off the Merry-Go-Round - How to Create the Life You Want Without the Fear, Doubt and Guilt. You can order her book here: www.nomorefeardoubtandguilt.com

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