The First Step Of Any Life Change 🥇
The #1 rule to follow when it feels like you have to climb a mountain, to create change in your life 🏔
Image by Suliman.Sallehi on Instagram
The #1 Rule: Remember The Vision
Before we take a deep dive in to this rule and how to follow it practically, there are a three things you have to remember and address first…
First: Life is always changing and you are too. Stay present in that change.
There will never be a day that is the same as one that has passed. The problem is, that as humans, we have a tendency to let our minds wander into the past and into the future, forgetting that we are alive here and now. When it comes down to it, NOW, is the only time you will ever have; if you want to create a past to be proud of and a future full of great treasures you have to stay present in each moment.
Jessie Itzler says it best, “remember where your feet are.”
It is a simple reminder to stay present in the moment. Where ever your feet are is where you should be.
I grew up in a canyon with creek flowing through it. It was beautiful, especially on those warm summer days with the sun shining through the tall green fir trees, smelling freshly cut grass, and listening to the sound of the water calmly flowing over the creek bed. But it was always just as beautiful in the winter months when the creek would roar as the water lines rose and started to spill over on the once grassy, now muddied banks. What really held my attention in the winter was the canyon wall. In the summer it always is an earthy brown tone with spots of green plants popping out here and there, but in the winter, it would turn white. The rain would trickle down over the edge form the trees above and freeze into icicles, long and short. I always loved to throw rocks at them, then watch them fall and shatter into a hundred different pieces.
I still go back there today. I have looked at that canyon wall thousands of times over my 30 years and each time I do, it is different. It always looks basically the same but ever day there are slight changes from the weathering of the water and wind. Sometimes they are so small I don’t notice and other days, what was once a small change had evolved and the rock and mud that had been at the top of the cliff side have fallen to the bank and are now laying at the edge of the creek, weathering faster in the current of the water. It took me along time to realize but every day I have looked at that canyon wall, I have changed as well.
I remember playing in the water as a kid, my high pitched squeaky voice, laughing as I was trying not slip on the rocks and clay of the creek bed. As I grew up, would hang out in the same place, with family, friends, or girls, lounging in the water and soaking up the sun. Then there were the late nights, sitting by the water with a campfire drinking beers with friends and listening to the sounds of the water flowing, the crackling of the fire, and looking at the starts shining down. I was always basically the same person but over time I had grown and had changed. Just and the water and wind had weathered the canyon wall, I had been weathered by life. Still the same in my core, but I had learned new lessons, grown into my body, and become my own person on my own path.
What I love most about that place, is not that fact I have so many great memories growing up there, but that every time I able able to sit by the water I am reminded to stay present. Listening to the sound of nature, the chirping birds, the flowing water, and the tress rustling in the wind, it’s calming.
For me, it is a constant reminder that life is always changing and so are you. If you want to experience it fully, you have to stay present in the moment. No matter good or bad the times are, soak it up for what it is worth and experience it. It is the only life you have and if you live it intensely in each moment it will teach you lessons that can change you forever.
Second: You will never get to where you want to be, unless you know who you are.
There is an old business fable I want to share with you to illustrate this second point to remember…
There was a man sitting at the kitchen table, enjoying his cup of coffee with his morning newspaper. When is young son comes running downstair, excited to go out and play.
Lost in thought while reading the business section, he was surprised when his son pulled the newspaper down and excitedly yelled: “Daddy, I’m up! Let’s go outside and play!”
The father, being so busy with work lately, had promised the night before that they would spend the entire day together, so he blocked off his calendar to spend the day getting some quality time with his son.
Although excited to see his son and eager to spend the day together, he wanted just a few more minutes to finish his paper and his morning routine.
So he has an idea, to buy himself a little more time…
He pulls out a page from his newspaper, with a big picture of the word on it a few pages back, and tears the picture into about 20 tiny pieces.
He found some tape and put them on the table in front of his son and said, “Let’s play a game. Here is a puzzle I want to see how fast you can put this picture of the world together! Once you’re finished, we will go outside and start our day!”
The boy enthusiastically dove right in, while the father sat back down and continued reading the newspaper.
Not even three minutes go by and the son excitedly pulls down his fathers newspaper and says, “Dad i’m done!”
The father looks down at his son and the picture of the world an expression of amazement on his face, astonished his son was able to do it so quickly. He couldn’t believe it, so he asked his son, “How on earth did you do that so fast?”
The young boy replied, “It was easy, Dad! I couldn’t do it at first and I started to give up because it was so hard. But a piece fell on the floor and when I went to pick it up, I saw through the glass table, that there was a picture of a man on the other side. So I decided to put the man together, and when I did the world just fell into place.”
So often in life we see the world as the rule book, forgetting that we are the vehicle that drives us to success… You get from the world what you invest in yourself. The daily work, the focus, the patience, the commitment, all these things transform you and can unlock the most important doors in your life. But piecing together the world you want is an impossible task if you haven’t created your ideal self first.
Third: Focus on the process.
Life is a complex web of activity that can be broken down into simple systems or processes. It is the processes that you follow through out your day that will ultimately determine your success.Everything in life has a process. The way your body digests food, driving your car, going on a run, brushing your teeth, they are all processes created by small steps that are combined together.
When you are working toward a goal, it can be easy to get distracted or discouraged when things don’t go your way, but it is in those times when you need to focus on the process, continuing to take small steps in the right direction. Over time that process will become more simple and easy to follow.
In essence the process will become your way of living. So build a process that fills you up with energy and confidence. Build a process that you love to do, one that challenges you, and pushes you toward further growth.
Now… Let’s talk about the #1 rule to follow when it feels like you have to climb a mountain, to create change in your life…
The #1 Rule: Remember The Vision
This rule has gotten new through some of life’s toughest lesson, hardest day and darkest nights. And I want to share it with you so you can find the same benefit form it too.
Proverbs 29:18 “Where there is no vision, the people will perish.”
Your vision, is the fire inside of you. It is the goals you want to accomplish and the achievements you want to reach. It is the reason you continue on. It is your list of whys, your calling, and your personal legend.
So why in hard times, when you are struggling with a major life change is it so easy to get lost and feel the weight of the world on your shoulder? Most often, it is because you have started to look at the mountain of things you have to do in order to make it happen. That is when doubt and fear creep in. Which leads to negative thought loops, the feeling of inadequacy, or imposter syndrome. You have lost the vision and have begun to perish.
If that’s you its okay. Take a minute to breath. Feel your lungs fill with air. Connect with your inner spirit and remember the vision that set you out on this journey in the first place. Maybe it was the healthy tone body you have always wanted, financial freedom, or the ability to retire young, pay off your parents mortgage, and travel for the rest of your life. What ever it was, remember the vision that you are working to build and take a minute to smile and reflect on it.
Once you do that, you will notice three things happen…
First, remembering the vision will calm your mind. As you think about your vision, you will begin to understand that this is one step along your journey that will propel your forward. It will help you find presence in the moment, remember where your feet are, and start to find a lesson in the struggles and challenges you are facing now. Which means that you will be on your way to overcoming those obstacles.
Second, remembering the vision will help you refocus your perspective. You know life will always be unpredictable and that the only way you can fight through all the unpredictable times is by building your self up. It will refocus your perspective empower you to find a way to work on yourself and with every step you take to create yourself, you will slowly see your world around you start to fall into place.
Last but not least, remembering the vision will help you shape your process. Your vision may be a goal or a destination , but each time you reach it, a new one will emerge. The only constant, will be the process of achievement you follow. That realization will help you create processes, now, that will empower your growth and give you time tested steps to follow that you enjoy executing. And every day you follow thought on that process, will fill you up with energy, excitement, and a burning desire to continue on.
So when in doubt REMEMBER THE VISION!
If you have enjoyed this article, please hit the follow button as I will be posting more in depth about each of the 5 Pillars of a Healthy Lifestyle in the days to come. You can also find me on Instagram, TikTok, and Youtube @travis.cisneors or The Foragers Freedom Podcast on Spotify.