Recently, I decided that I would not be going ahead with the self-confidence development program that I have been trying to write for a number of months. I had invested a lot of time, effort and thought into this program and had felt that I knew exactly what I wanted from it. However, in a moment of reflection, it occurred to me that writing this program meant that I was following my logic and not my heart.
For some time, I had felt as though there was something missing from the program, and had not been able to identify what that was. In a conversation with a friend, I found myself unexpectedly declaring out loud for the first time that my heart and soul were not in this program and that if I wanted to be authentic, I had to stop writing it.
After making the declaration, I felt simultaneously discombobulated and relieved. Relieved, because I had finally admitted that I didn’t think this program was for me. Discombobulated because it felt as though I was giving up and starting all over again, with absolutely no idea and no direction. Will I ever get the online training component of my business off the ground, or will I just keep changing my mind? After sitting with the disappointment and discombobulation for a short time, I decided to look for the learning.
I am not exactly sure how but, by pure coincidence, I had signed up for a 7-day course building challenge that started at about the time I was at the peak of discombobulation. I don’t even remember doing so, and had forgotten about it until the reminder emails started arriving. Well, I might as well try and get this challenge done, because I have declared to my friend that I will have my new course outlined within 10 days, and right now I have no idea what it is even about.
One of the first homework tasks in the challenge was to write out every topic that we felt that we would like to write a program about. After listing out about six topics, the next question was “If every item on your list was guaranteed to earn you $1,000,000 tomorrow, which one would you choose to teach?”
As I looked at my list and focused on the topics, it occurred to me that I would choose leadership as my topic. It was interesting that my whole body felt as though it was lighting up just by thinking about this, and excitement started flowing through my body. The feeling was amazing, and it suddenly occurred to me that leadership is my passion. This was odd because I had known that I had a passion for leadership yet I hadn’t really allowed myself to believe that leadership was my biggest passion.
Wow. Leadership is my passion, and by actively diverting my attention to other topics, I had been avoiding following my passion. This felt big. The very initial stages of my self-doubt journey had involved me forming the interpretation that I was being mistreated by bullying leaders. When that experience was over, I had declared that I wanted to do my best to bring compassion and kindness to leadership, to reduce the bullying and autocratic ways that I felt were becoming more prevalent than I recalled from the earlier days of my career. And yet, for seven months, I had been trying to focus on something else.
At this point, something shifted and I realised that, finally, I was giving myself permission to follow my passion. What’s more, I was also giving myself permission to believe that I could make a difference by following my passion.
As I sat and thought about my newest program idea, it occurred to me that this idea was much larger than my confidence course idea. It had the potential to be huge and daunting and overwhelming and much more. However, I found myself becoming excited by that. With each imagined challenge, I was finding possibilities. It was an amazing feeling.
And so, I have started to develop the leadership program that I have been wanting to develop for a long time. I am going to go forth with my passion and use that to make a difference. And I can’t wait to do so.
- Where might you be diverting your attention from your passion?
- How is this serving you?
- What would it take to shift your focus to your passion?
As a leadership and life coach, these points are all points that I am able to help people to explore. If you feel that it would be useful to have a conversation with me, please feel free to view my services on the Leading and Being website.