by Lori Milner, author, entrepreneur, thought leader and founder of Beyond the Dress
What is the story you tell yourself? But a more interesting question is what is the story you tell yourself about time? Your story is made up of your beliefs and the vocabulary you use to tell that story.
I want to tell you a story about Jim Kwik. As a child, he had a head injury and growing up was labelled, ‘the boy with the broken brain’. He battled through school and took 4 years longer to complete his degree when his teachers told him to give up. Today, he is the top memory coach in the world consulting to business leaders, celebrities and top level performers. He famously says, ‘If you fight for your limitations you get to keep them’.
My question to you is again – what is the story you are telling yourself? Are you putting off your big goals and dreams because ‘I’m too old, too young, too short, too fill in the blank. Or is your story – ‘one day when I lose 5kg, get that degree, find the balance, purchase that equipment, get my website up and running then I…
If we choose the story, we get to narrate the ending. So choose a story that will allow you to step into your greatness, even if you haven’t quite figured out how to get there. Don’t choose a story that makes you shrink to fit your story, or a label that makes you shrink to fit the label. ‘I’m an introvert, I’m shy, I’m a bad public speaker’. You can be an amazing entrepreneur and networker who just happens to be shy! Start by choosing the story to give yourself permission to live your ‘someday’ life today.
But it’s not only the story that affects our beliefs but the language we use to tell that story. It is easy to fall into false narratives of time poverty, but choosing to change your story from “I’m too busy” to “I have time for what matters to me” can make you see possibilities.
When someone asks us how we are, our default reaction is ‘Im so busy’. So I want to challenge you to change your default to something that gives you a sense of control and power over your day. As graphic designer and icon, Debbie Milman says – ‘Busy is a decision. We decide what we want to do based on what we think are the priorities in our lives. If we don’t get to them, I suggest you look at how important they are to you. It is more important to watch game of thrones or paint a picture or read a book, bake, garden. If those are more important, you’ll never get to the painting or book. If you are using busy as an excuse, then they’re just not that important to you.’
So next time someone asks you how your day is going – choose to reply – ‘Amazing, exciting, astounding, miraculous…As Lisa Nichols, author and speaker says ‘ Never dim your light to make someone else feel better about themselves. Tell them to put on some shades”.
Here’s to owning your story,
LORI MILNER is the engaging facilitator, thought leader and mentor known for her insightful approach to being a modern corporate woman. Her brainchild, the successful initiative Beyond the Dress, is the embodiment of her passion to empower women. Beyond the Dress has worked with South Africa’s leading corporates and empowered hundreds of women with valuable insight on how to bridge the gap between work and personal life. Clients include Siemens, Massmart, Alexander Forbes, Life Healthcare Group, RMB Private Bank and Unilever to name a few. Lori has co-authored Own Your Space: The Toolkit for the Working Woman in conjunction with Nadia Bilchik, CNN Editorial Producer. Own Your Space provides practical tools and insights gleaned from workshops held around the world and from interviews with some of South Africa’s most accomplished women to provide you with tried-and-tested techniques, tips and advice to help you boost your career, enhance your confidence and truly own your space on every level. Own Your Space is the ultimate ‘toolkit’ to unleash your true power. It’s for the woman who wants to take her career to new heights and who is ready to fulfil her true potential.
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