Are you ready to finally glean the meaning behind some cliché lessons in life?
Note that as a copywriting coach, I coach to focus more on your reader than yourself, but I also suggest encouraging through storytelling. So I hope this story inspires you and sheds fresh light.
I could write a book about just the past 9 months of my family’s lives. It wasn’t about the major events so much, although we encountered our share.
Even the little things leading up to our move prompted a profound shift in my family. It was a move we’d been wanting. But we lived in St. Louis, Missouri for 25 years and were moving east 1,200 miles to a town where we knew no one. And it happened over a timeframe of about 2 months. It was truly amazing how all the things fell into place.
Cliché Lessons to Expose Your Roots and Renew Your Mind
Several phrases that seem overused to me now have meaning that we can apply to life and business.
1 Become Your True Self
I knew I was a child of God, wife, mom, wellness writer and coach, on my own faith and wellness journey — more on this here. I also knew I harbored too much worry and doubt and not enough trust.
During our move, we clearly saw God guiding us — the path was already paved and we just needed to follow one step at a time. This involved constant mental checks every chaotic day. Does that matter right now? Nope, I’ve just got to get this packed. Or I just have to get this cleaned for the house photos. We just have to choose from the ONE rental available at this moment and stop looking for more.
Becoming my true self has entailed letting go of trying to solve the potential problem ahead, and assuming instead that there wouldn’t be a problem. Not arguing with my husband about his opinions (and vice versa) but praying over our decisions instead.
Becoming my true self has involved facing my fears of uncovering things I might not want to know or have assigned to me by God. As Coach Emefa Gadze pointed out today in her “Loving Yourself Extravagantly” masterclass, these fears are often what keep us from practicing self love, and tapping into the person God created us to be.
Since landing in our new hometown, I’ve been applying the same prayerful ways to my wellness and business, too. A few examples?
- When I wake up anxious to do MORE work stuff at 4am, I refuse to do them out of anxiety and recite scripture for 60-90 minutes until I calm down.
- Instead of going exactly by my new daily plan, I ask the Holy Spirit each morning to guide me in His priorities. (They don’t always match.)
- Instead of assuming I’m going to get the winter “plague” my healthy husband has, I envision myself avoiding it.
I’m definitely not an expert at this, but the more I practice, the more instinctive it becomes.
As a result, I’ve realized I don’t necessarily need more healing but that I have healed and AM healing. I see it in my bodily function. I feel it in my lighter mental load. I’m able to thank God for what He’s already done.
By following God-opened doors and letting go of all my preconceived notions about myself, I’ve also come to terms with the reality that I am an entrepreneur. Dang. I do have the spirit of an entrepreneur. I do have a job that God has put on my heart. It’s much bigger than me and it requires me to do a LOT of things I don’t like, such as social media, being on video, budgeting and dealing with technology.
It feels like a lonely grind at times, until I remember that Jesus is literally here in the grit with me. And now amidst the everyday “grind”, I have been able to experience more contentment — and even joy. With bigger decisions, I see opportunity for more fun and adventure.
This version of me is smiling more often, which impacts everyone and everything I touch, including my family, health and business.
2 You Don’t Need to Stay Stuck
Sometimes we are meant to rest. But many times, we are doing all sorts of things to move forward, not trying them long enough or trying them for way too long. Do you know the saying “you can’t see the forest for the trees”? I haven’t been able to see the trees IN the forest. I see this bigger picture – the forest – and am missing the trees marking my clearer path. Can you relate?
But God goes before us and has already made the way. He has marked the trees, so to speak, if only we take time to look for them, one by one. Ugh, this is a test of patience, but has really kept me on path.
So how do you notice the trees? You intentionally reject anxiety. Then choose to sit still, pray and clear your head from your own problem-solving ways so you can hear the Holy Spirit’s next step for you. This is how you get unstuck.
You might receive instruction to rest or simply maintain, but then you aren’t stuck. You’re doing exactly what’s best.
Other times your next step may seem irrational or risky. But if it’s from God, He’s already got that figured out too, and He will see you through. Your health journey, business growth and life.
3 Take Your Thoughts Captive
Taking your thoughts captive overlaps some with the concepts of being mindful or being in the present.
I recall my first small group with you, Jeremy Z, when I thought “Taking your thoughts captive? Really? That sounds soooo exhausting” and exactly the thing I was trying to break free from — over analyzing myself!
After several years of digging into the Bible and practicing this, I realize how taking thoughts captive can free you. It involves controlling your thoughts instead of trying to control everything else in life. It’s like finding the root cause of an illness and overcoming it, and it’s really empowering.
So what does taking your thought captive look like? Each thought — is it from God? If it’s instilling fear and making you anxious, then no. If it’s gently convicting you and helping you make a better choice from a calm state, then it’s more likely from God — if you’ve been asking for His guidance.
Practice being more curious about your own thoughts. Acknowledge them, know where they are coming from. Choose to hold onto them or let them go.
An example of profound lessons in the smallest of thoughts
Lately, I’ve been playing solitaire (with real cards) again, which doesn’t seem that productive. But I’ve also been intentionally feeding my child-like self more, so I do this some nights to unwind. One night when I was playing, I realized, I’m just flipping through the cards, EXPECTING to be stuck and the game over. Dang (again)!
This is what I’ve been doing with work and my health — expecting to hit walls. Guess what? I’m choosing to be done with that. God has this planned out for me.
So I encourage you. Be mindful of your thoughts — take every thought captive — so you can see the walls God has already broken down for you and the trees he has already marked.
Cliché Lessons and Wiser Actions to Take
4 Just Go with the Seasons
Life has seasons. Seasons of youth and adulthood, seasons of rest, growth or transition, and so many more. But Cassie Kitzmiller enlightened me about “The Seasons of Business” in her podcast. Now, I see a new reality of life as an entrepreneur. This reality has freed me from ridiculous expectations that lead to disappointment and uncertainty, as well as the need to strive so much.
And whether you’re an entrepreneur or not, embracing the season you’re in as a community member, spouse, parent or otherwise, this concept could also set you free from unproductive worry.
5 Do Life Together
Whatever you’re called to do in your life, paid or not, doing life together is part of your job.
Doing life with others allows you to serve more in the your God-given purpose. The right friends help keep you out of unnecessary ruts. They simply listen or gently call you out without judging. They help you grow. They give you love when you’re trying to give it to them.
Through other God-loving friends, I’ve learned how to “submit all things to Him so He will make my path straight”. I’ve become a better wife, mom and friend. I’ve found a new naturopath to navigate my wellness journey, who’s more like my trusted Dr. Berger in St. Louis than I first realized. I’ve also been learning how to put service over sales and run a business based on Godly principles, thanks to Tracy Wren’s coaching and her “Faith to Freedom” podcast.
Whatever our “business” is, we are here to serve and live it with others. Being curious about what and why others think instead of close-minded. Assuming the best instead of the worst when we aren’t able to be curious in the moment. Asking for help — perhaps even when we think “we got it”. Offering help when it’s not convenient. Letting that to-do list go and just being with your family.
Are your thoughts and purpose breathing life into you instead of sucking it out? If they aren’t, use this opportunity to reformulate.
- God created your true self and has a plan for you.
- Rest is needed at times, but staying stuck is a choice.
- Challenge your usual thoughts until the usual feels really good!
- Embrace your seasons. We weren’t meant to do everything all the time.
- Seek others. Serve others. Let others serve you.
Back to that first small Bible study group again, I remember announcing that I felt like a ball of yarn — you could pull either end and watch it snag on a mass of tangles. But walking more adventurously in faith, following Jesus’ lead, has allowed my knots to untangle. Not coincidently, it has also helped me become healthier again, become a better business woman and to genuinely feel more fulfilled.
What stories can you share? What self-defeating patterns would you like to let go of? Pray for guidance and the right people to enter your life. Celebrate the little revelations and continue to share as you grow.