How to Ditch Your To Do’s and Start Thinking in Results!??
I have struggled for years feeling like I would always get so close to what I wanted, and then, I don’t know how else to explain it, but I just couldn’t get there.
What the heck was going on?
I could start the engine, but boy oh boy, why was it not taking me across the finish line?
Maybe you can relate. You see the vision, you know what needs to happen (at least most of it), you get it started, then WAMO! Something happens and all this other stuff starts to get in the way.
I mean, sure, it’s kind of important stuff. But none of it ever seems to help you reach your goal. There is just always MORE stuff piling up.
Yesterday morning I was gently reminded this morning that it’s not about a to-do list it’s about a results list.
For most of my life, including most of my adult life so far, I’ve only looked at the tasks in front of me.
AKA the overwhelming mountain that is just about impossible to climb up.
I pondered for a quite some time about the idea of looking at what you want versus what needs to be done.
And was reminded again just yesterday morning, through a morning motivation, that looking at the tasks in front of you as to-do items- already frustrated, complicates things, and build an even bigger mountain.
It’s like: “Someone help me, I’m drowning!”
But here’s the kicker and it’s not fancy. Things don’t change because of external circumstances. Things change because of internal circumstances.
Where instead, if you think about the results that you want to happen in your life. And then ask yourself, what do I need to do to get there?
One small thing at a time.
And stay away from unsupportive people. It’s an energy suck and YES! You will lose momentum.
Your focus is no longer all on the items that you have not yet done.
But on the positive result of that what you want to achieve.
Not to mention how many of us always pick the easiest to do list items and avoid the big ones that are going to push us towards our Dream results anyways?
I know I do this.
Why work on a big project proposal when I can clean the kitchen?
Total transparency… My brain often wants to choose the easier tasks, because then if by chance I fail, I’ve already protected myself from it.
I’ve had to train my brain to just start looking at life this way. To stop sympathizing with the side of me that likes the overwhelm, that validates my frustration with a mounting to do list. And a poor me mentality.
?What do I want?
?What are the results I’m trying to achieve?
?If I keep my eyes focused there, I’m going to stay more positive, and probably make better choices.
Remember this, change is hard. But it’s not impossible. It’s only impossible if you’ve already told yourself it’s going to be…
So today make it a point to physically write out your “Results List”... What do you want!? Keep that list handy and in easy sight. And when you start to engage in tasks, ask yourself “are these tasks, activities moving me towards my end game? Towards what I want most?”
After you write out your Results List reflect on why you want these things in the first place.
I wanted to land a big partner for my Mother Trucker Yoga company. I had one in mind. I thought about that partner all the time. And knew that would be a home run for me. Everything I was doing I was working to gain the notice and respect of that company. Then I landed an opportunity to work with them on a trial basis. I could have felt defeated in that I had to do a lot more than I had thought initially. And it was frustrating at times. It could have been easier to just do the minimum required. And when I got frustrated, I a few times found myself doing things that had nothing to do with landing this partnership.
HOPE WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU DOING! I got so overwhelmed in those moments with other things, that in the end didn’t really matter. And would actually go away, and get handled later if I could land this partnership. But I let myself get distracted by those small tasks. Because achieving those small tasks gave me temporary happiness. Where climbing that mountain towards my BIG WIN, required a bit more grit.
Think results not tasks.
Think results no to do lists.
Think results no instant gratification.
Nothing in this world is constant. Everything in this world is an opportunity to change, leap forward and grow. There may be people who don’t understand your journey, but there’s no reason to let them stop you. This story will teach you four lessons in dealing with unsupportive people.
Meet the Grasshopper
Once, I was driving with my mom and kids in the car with my moon roof open. Out of nowhere, a grasshopper leaped into the car and sat on my thigh as I was driving. All of us squealed in excitement for different reasons. My kids thought a grasshopper in our car was silly. My mom and I instantly thought about leaps forward in my life.
The grasshopper hung around for a while, then I cracked open my window and it sat on the edge for a few minutes. My mom commented,
Hope, you teach us in yoga to meet our edge, honor it and see what we can learn from that view.”
With the thought of sending it home, I gave it a small tap. Out of the window it flew, and back in it came. We all laughed, and my mom and I said at that moment,
Remember to trust. Big leaps forward in my life are necessary and present for me right now.”
I believe that life is constantly giving us signs and constantly telling us things helpful to our life. If we choose to listen. My little grasshopper friend was a confirmation to me that everything I am currently practicing and living is all part of my leap forward. Like a grasshopper, sometimes when you are about to leap forward, unexpected things come into play to try to throw you off.
How many times in your own life have you been confused for something you are not? Or have you been confronted with someone who won’t let go of your past persona and see you for as you are? How many times have you said one thing and because someone is unhappy with their own life, they turn it around to try to stop you from leaping forward?
Together, We Are Leaping Forward
Maybe you are a little like me: you go to the beat of your own drum, not like the norm, see purpose and learning opportunities in everything, and want to continue to change. You want to grow, and you notice when the growth is very prominent, on the cusp of leaping from well-cut grass to a tall, grassy hillside. There are unsupportive people and things in your life that come out of nowhere to try to steal that away from you.
You are the kind of person who tries to be honest. Sometimes, unsupportive people confuse that honesty with judgment. And usually, because those people don’t want to hear the truth. They try to stop your leap in mid-air because they don’t want anyone else around them leaping if they aren’t going to. Like a grasshopper, what works for others will not necessarily work for you. Even more so, what works for you will probably not work for anyone else.
So how do you be like that grasshopper and not get squashed in the process?
1. Like the grasshopper, it is important to understand that at times you may need to stay still.
Take it in. Don’t say a word and just let others do the talking. At other times or at a moment’s notice, you may need to take a huge leap into the air and land somewhat blindly. You must trust that it’s right.
2. Trust your inner voice.
Like a grasshopper’s inner ability to sense sound with their legs, sense the sound of your inner voice and trust that your navigation is on par.
3. A grasshopper has an inner sense of knowing when to make its leap.
Your progress is made in the form of mostly leaps, rather than steps. Likewise, your progress will most likely not be slow and steady, but a playful combination of leaps, hops, bounces, and strides. Like a grasshopper, those can sometimes be misunderstood. Know that your hop will only make sense to you, and it is not necessary for you to try to get others to understand.
4. Finally, a grasshopper can leap up to twenty times its height.
Our grassy friend can only leap up or forward, never back. So sure, glance back and see how far you have come. But for you my friend, the only way is up and forward by leaps and bounds. Not everyone will understand it, but other grasshoppers will. When you need it most, you will know to leap to a sunny mound and meet your fellow grasshoppers there. Then you can glance back again and see what you were able to overcome.
This post was originally published September 2012 on MindBodyGreen.
Worthy living… insights into living your best life.
Is spring in sight?
Is it possible that this crazy winter will break eventually?
I am not quite sure.
I have been in a vast amount of self reflection of myself the last several months and in that asking myself continually “what do I want”? “What makes me light up”? “What is burning inside me to be shared”?
And it’s interesting, because how I view yoga, life, and my priorities is VERY different that it has ever been.
And the biggest change is not my focus in my career or even my yoga practice. It’s my view of myself. It’s how I see myself, and myself in the world.
I have been in daily meditation over the word “worthy” and what that means to me. And never truly feeling worthy of much of anything had left me at the mercy of everyone’s demands, wants and needs. And let’s be honest pulled in a zillion different directions and never really truly feeling I could meet my potential and reap the benefits of it.
Have you ever been there?
I listened to an audio book about six months ago and this idea of “worthy” and not receiving life fully because deep down you do not feel worthy. Hit me to the core and brought me to my knees.
And this is where my yoga practice stepped in yet again. Sifting through my feelings and emotions and knee jerk reactions to life on my mat gave me insights I did not yet have. Gave me room to breathe, feel and love. Build the confidence to just be me.
Gave me the ability to embrace my dreams, desires and see what it is I am climbing for I am deserving of.
Have you ever been there?
Thank you yoga for the insights and knowledge to know I am a rock star and no longer ashamed to share that! That one day you will see me on the big stage and say “I took class from her”.
You may read that and say “wow she’s full of herself”. And it is those exact words that has kept me back for YEARS from reaching my potential. From going for it. From staying small, stuck and with the mentality that I am just suppose to “be happy” with what I have.
Well I’ve got news for you… You can have MORE. You are MORE. You deserve MORE.
And you can have it with a humble heart and a kind spirit.
From my heart to yours….
Walking a labyrinth of life. Have you ever walked a labyrinth?
In the beginning, it’s slow, you’re young, you don’t know much, the world is new and different.
But as you walk towards the center of the labyrinth, even though your pace is the same things speed up. You are able to circle the labyrinth more quickly and get to the center quite quickly.
And like life, once you meet the center there is a moment of bliss, peace and unfolding. And mid-life is like that. There comes a time (for many) when they reach a point in their lives where they feel like they “got it”. And the stop to look around and show gratitude for this amazing life (good or bad-you’re alive and that is flipping amazing, have you looked around you lately and what all of creation is offering you. Pretty epic).
And at the center of the labyrinth, you stop and take a moment to pray, to release anything that you no longer need to carry, you pay gratitude, you ask for forgiveness, to be made new, to release and now take in the next phase of your journey.
As you start your journey back out the winding circles of the labyrinth again it seems faster at first, even though your pace is nearly the same. But as you start to get closer to the outer windings of the circle it begins to take you longer to reach the end. Things slow down, you slow down.
In life, it’s much the same way. After mid-life and you start to step into the golden years, things slow down. Kids are all grown up, you may be retired, have moved. Where now you have slowed down as we all know eventually we all reach the end of the circle.
Now when you walk a labyrinth you often are asked to take an intention in with you and then knowing you may leave with something else as you exit.
But life is often that way. Many enter college and get a 4-year degree only to discover that they are to do something entirely different.
Because the thing is, in life, we change. We grow. We expand and contract at various moments of our lives. What seems slow will eventually speed up and what seems fast will eventually slow down.
It was brought to my attention this morning while walking the labyrinth that pace is everything.
And my pace throughout the entire walk circling through the winding paths of the labyrinth my pace was the same. One foot in front of the other and the journey’s path got quicker, faster, shorter.
But it was my pace that kept me calm, it was my pace that kept me focused, it was my pace that helped and allowed me to hold strong a powerful intention going in and coming out.
So wherever your journey leads you, keep pace.
Wherever your feet lead you, keep pace.
Whatever you find in your path, know it’s there for a reason and keep pace.
It may at times seem like the world is moving quickly around you and you need to “run” the rat race too, but I assure you keep pace and you will end up exactly where you need to be at the exact right time.
Blessings to all,
I’m not a yoga teacher.
Turning the way that I do business upside-down has come with its challenges. For years I have simply called myself a yoga teacher. Over these years, I have grown as a person, and as a result, my teaching style and approach on the mat have evolved as well.
I can still remember finally being brave enough to show up to another yoga teacher’s class, who in my surrounding area had made quite a name for herself. Usually full of fear to do such a thing, I took my mat under my arm and walked in the door. She recognized me and casually said hi, and I returned the greeting. Her class was hard, really hard, and I can remember leaving that session dripping in sweat and overwhelmed with tears because I thought to myself “I am nothing like she is.”
For years I yo-yoed with this type of thinking. My classes were growing and my following was becoming like family, but my insecurity regarding who I was as a yoga teacher continued with me for several years.
Throughout my entire life, I never felt like I fit in, always standing at the edge, or inside the circle but wondering how long it would last. This gut feeling stayed with me, that I was never meant to conform, yet I desperately wanted to be liked and accepted as both a kid and later as an adult. In our family, we were shown firsthand how to dislike ourselves, and I definitely would have gotten an A+ in that category.
As I taught others about how to love themselves, I often would speak candidly on my mat about the teachable lessons of life. What I really was speaking about was my own life, and I really was speaking to myself. I slowly began to heal my negative thinking patterns one by one while assisting others doing the same.
Many of my students would joke that they would come to my classes to help their physical bodies heal (as I had a growing reputation for intuitively understanding the body), but they would stay because of what it did for their minds. And that is how I view yoga.
Yoga is simply a tool for us to get to know ourselves better, be the observer without distraction, and see how we act and react to life in what I call the incubator (the yoga mat). I love to speak to my students’ souls, and often would find myself crying on the mat, not because I was sad, but because I knew the deep truth that I was being told to speak to those present that day.
These truths, alongside my very nontraditional approach to yoga asana (poses) and the body, caused me to feel like a liar every time someone asked me what I did for a living. I’d say I teach yoga – but that’s not what I do.
I teach others how to live in their bodies fully! I teach others how to honor who they are and how to listen to what their breath and bodies are saying to them. I do all of this while challenging their thinking and their outlooks on themselves and on life in a gentle mirroring way.
I wasn’t a yoga teacher at all.
As I questioned this and meditated on this huge unveiling in my life, I also was diving deep and launching myself into speaking beyond the yoga mat. In writing my five-minute keynote, I was challenged to tell others who I am and what I do in just those few short minutes, and in a way that they would walk away remembering.
Who am I? Easy, I’m Hope Zvara and I Help Others Purposefully Excel. What do I do? And how do I do it?
Yoga was off the table because I knew deep down that I was beyond a yoga teacher at this point. I saw yoga as a tool I would continue to use, but it wasn’t my only tool, especially since most of my learning and education on the human body over the last eight years was outside the yoga realm.
What do I do?
For two weeks, I thought about this. Who am I and what do I do? As I sat down to write yet again, I softly laid my fingertips on my keyboard and the words just flowed. I help others learn to live in their bodies by following the three B’s: Breath, Body, Belief.
Breathing is essential. You cannot live without breathing, and, sadly, many people are not even aware of their breath.
The Body is the soul’s last attempt to get us to listen, and the mat is a way for me to help others learn about and live in their bodies more fully.
And finally, your mindset, or your Beliefs, create your behaviors and set you up for what you will, in fact, attract.
These three pillars are what I have evolved around over the years, and in creating this clarity, it has allowed me to create more focus in my life and in my business. It has reminded me of what I speak on, who I am as a teacher and how I can help people. If it doesn’t fit into this framework, I know to pass on it. After all, trying to be everything for everyone just ends with you being nothing to anyone. As a result, your message becomes watered down, diluted and lost in the shuffle.
I am not a yoga teacher. I am Hope Zvara, and I use yoga as a tool to help and inspire others to live the best life possible: breath, body, and belief (mind).