As 2013 began to wind down, I found myself reflecting on the many beautiful moments and memories from the past year. I found myself drawn to certain photos, and I found myself thinking of the people I hold dear with love and gratitude. Without the love and support of so many (yes indeed, it takes a village!), I would not have surpassed the many trials and obstacles that have led to heightened levels of joy, health and success I am grateful for right now.
These people are my own personal "A-Team", and most people would benefit from consciously building one. When I suggest to someone who is asking me for advice that they seek out support from a therapist or healer of some kind, especially when they are in a space of transition or dealing with trauma, they immediately reject the suggestion. They believe that they have to do it all on their own, be a lone warrior of sorts, and that seeking support is a form of weakness. Many times, the response I get is: "No, I am not weak."
I'd like to offer a very different perspective as part of the new emerging paradigm. As you may already know, vulnerability is the latest buzz word thanks to Brene Brown's brilliant vulnerability and shame research. Asking for support or help has nothing to do with weakness. In fact, it takes a tremendous amount of confidence, strength and courage to see where your skill set, behaviors, perceptions and belief systems fall short and to find, trust and invest in that practitioner or person who has the experience and knowledge to up-level your game. As a result of this process, you further tap into your potential, reveal and transcend any hidden or unconscious blocks to your success and well-being.
For example, look at a NFL team looking to win the Superbowl or a professional tennis player looking to win the next Grand Slam tournament. You never see a professional sports team or a professional tennis player guiding themselves. They have a variety of coaches, offensive, defensive etc. They might have physical therapists, trainers, nutritionists, sports psychologists, masseuses, business managers, among many others. They combine the most knowledgable, successful people in their respective fields (their A-Team) in their efforts to upgrade their performances from every angle possible, elevating their chances of fulfilling their highest potential and maintaining their longevity and presence in their chosen sports professions.
The same mindset applies to Fortune 500 companies that are ahead of the curve. Certain CEO's understand that to produce the best product, to be the best company, to constantly adapt, create and evolve according to consumer demand and to continuously maintain high levels of productivity, they must often times spend massive amounts of time and money on various consultants to guide their employees to peak performance. These companies look to experts like Tony Robbins, Harvard Business School Alum, Consultant and Writer Tony Schwartz and his consulting firm The Energy Project, or Dr. Henry Cloud who chronicled those Fortune 500 companies and the qualities that lead to success in his book, Integrity: The Courage to Meet the Demands of Reality (which I most definitely recommend on both a personal level and a business one).
At the very end of 2013, I set aside some contemplation time to clearly define my goals and consider the kind of support I need to achieve those goals. I took inventory of my current A-Team to see what or who needed to be released with gratitude, and then set the intention to seek and attract those collaborators that will help to propel me to the next level. If you haven't already, I invite you to do some version of the same to align yourself with your vision and your dreams instead of letting life happen by default.
As Joyce Spitzer, author of Rejections of the Written Famous, proclaims, "Your dreams are your real job."
Build your castles in the sky. There are no limits.
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