When I first entered the entrepreneurial space, I was asked again and again:
“What is it that you want so badly that you are willing to adopt a “whatever it takes attitude?”
This question seemed to follow me where ever I went. Are you willing to do whatever it takes to build this business?
My answer was always “YES, I am willing to do the work… AND… I won’t compromise my health, integrity, or personal freedom in order to get there.”
This seemed to confuse a lot of people, my business coach, my family, and at times my business partners.
Then one day I realized that I had been viewing this question all wrong. Because it had been asked of me in a business context, I was limiting it’s reach.
I realized that the answer to the question “What do you want soooooo badly that you are willing to do whatever it takes?” wasn’t a business, it was a lifestyle that afforded me optimal health in the holistic sense:
peace of mind
love in my heart
well being in my body
connection to my spirit and the spirit of this world at it’s best.
A business was simply a vehicle to help me achieve that lifestyle. Assuming I could build this business, I knew I would have the freedom to work whenever and from wherever I wanted. Plus, it would allow me to position myself for limitless earning potential, which would allow me to feel abundant and fully resourced, both internally and externally.
Once I had this realization, the money seemed less important, the resume building seemed less important, the industry recognition seemed less important, these metrics were no longer the dominate metrics I used to measure my success. Rather my health became #MyMetric of success.
As a young person I struggled a lot with my health. I won’t get into all the details, except to say it set me on a path of healing and transformation. A journey that lead me to discover an alternative approach to health and wellness and introduced me to a more holistic perspective. In the past ten years, I have found the healing I was seeking and celebrated optimal health as my norm. I have come to understand that my body is always speaking to me, attempting to lead my down the path that will result in my arrival at the my own version of the promised land. To the contrary, my mind will often ignore, warp, or distort the path in front of me leading me down the road towards burnout and crisis.
In retrospect, I find myself experiencing feelings of gratitude for the pain and suffering of my early years. Without these experiences, it is hard to say if I would have come into relationship with these same wisdoms and seen the same degree of transformation in myself. It is hard to say if I would have become the same person I am today, and turns out I’m proud of who I have become.
A person whose number 1 metric for success is based entirely upon health as the ultimate form of wealth. A person who feels called to advocate for self-care in a world that often suggests we put ourselves last, behind our loved ones, behind the demands of our careers, and so on. A person who marches to the beat of her own drummer with passion and discipline, when the world outside constantly attempts to suck her into conformity and disempowerment.
When my health is good it allows me to be at ease and conquer all challenges. When my health is poor I have learned to understand my symptoms as pleading screams by myself to myself to change direction and get back in alignment with my highest self, path, and purpose.
So #MyMetric for success is not the balance in my bank account, the number of promotions I have received, the amount of viewers who visited my website, or the amount of comments on my blog posts. Rather #MyMetric of success is “how my body feels.” My energy, my enthusiasm my ease, my immune system function, the quality of my sleep.
When I am headed down a path that aligns with my life’s purpose, I am healthy and vibrant. When I get off track, symptoms of illness show up to alert me to take back control of the wheel and start recalibrating to ensure I do reach my version of the promised land. Ultimately, I want to live a long life and spend my later years surrounded by loved ones, supported by plenty of resources and tickled by positive memories not haunted by regrets.
The way I stay on track is through the practice of radical self acceptance, compassion, present moment awareness and long term (sometimes seemly idealistic) vision, and finding the right balance of work, play, and rest.
These practices inform all areas of my life, including the work I do in this world.
So… let's start a conversation the comments section below!
How does health play into your metric of success?
Orginally published on LinkedIn Pulse: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/health-wealth-mymetric-success-charlie-birch-1?trk=mp-reader-card
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