When you can find opportunity in everything, that’s when you find success – Susan Young

Reflection.  It’s that time of year when we all want to look back and reflect at the year that was.  Although, the year isn’t over yet.  There is still opportunity to Begin Something and Be Special (following up from my last post).

But I do believe that if we begin to take stock of where we were when we began the year, we can finish the year off in super-style and begin the new one with a clear plan and strategy so that you don’t have to create any BS resolutions that aren’t going to work for you anyway.  Why do resolutions never work?  Because you have to commit to them and for the most part, from what I can see anyway, 98% of the population will Begin Something to Be Special but give up when the going gets tough.

You’ll hear me say this a lot.  We all have a valuable story.  We all have our own challenges and we all face life with our own set of conditioned beliefs and “what we were given”.  In the last 2 years I have completely turned my life around from being one of ignorance, denial, blame and “feeling bloody sorry for myself” to one where I take full accountability and responsibility for ALL of my actions.  And trust me, some of those actions still need work…. I am only human (like you) so I can forgive myself for where I am not perfect and move swiftly along.

Also, in these last couple of years I have been building my business and using my skills to super-stalk the people I want to network with.  I seek people out who I believe I can help (this may sound a little odd) but it’s what I do.  Naturally, I want to affect and change the lives of others.  What I’ve realised when doing this is that I can’t help everyone (because some don’t want or won’t accept it) and that for the most part, people aren’t able to see opportunity right in front of their face, instead they see competition.  FFS.  I’ve also seen those who don’t want my help, take ideas I’ve given them and make them their own, which is exactly what I want to happen, take opportunities and use them (if they are going to benefit others, not just one person).  I also seek people out who I believe can help me.  Because we can’t do things on our own.  And in doing this, I have had met some truly incredible folks who have inspired me to continue on my business journey (when I have felt like giving up and giving in) and have shared insights into who I am and how I behave, act, interact and react.  All of this stuff is super important if you want to continue to grow and learn and contribute to the world.

So, if you look back at your year and what it was like for you on the 1st January 2014, how different is your life now?  Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t achieve or accomplish things you set out to do (there’s tons of things I haven’t done that I said I would)… write this stuff out, look at each month and see where there is opportunity, so that you can feel in your heart that you are already a success.  And dive deeper into this so that you can Begin Something today to be who you were always meant to be:

1.  January – woke up on a beach in WA.  Saw the beauty of the ocean and reconnected to my No.1 value which is Freedom.  I couldn’t swim as I had stitches removed from my back the day before (I had cancer removed) and I felt grateful to be alive.  I was present.

Realised the clients I had in my business weren’t my ideal target and had to make changes, this was hard.  Was still living with my ex-partner, so when I came back from my holiday, I knew that one of us had to move out of the house and that a situation that I had tolerated was no longer tolerable, it had to change.

2.  February – I turned 41 and felt like I had nothing to show for it.  Ran my first workshop with 4 incredible women.  I had mini-breakdowns each day after the break-up (even though the relationship had ended a long time before this) and had to trust myself that I was going to be OK and “can do this”.  I worked day and night to re-build my business and my confidence.  My self-esteem was at an all time low, though I counted my blessings each day.  I had a roof over my head, my laptop and an internet connection.  Blogging and social media kept me sane.  I felt connected somehow.

3.  March – Spoke to a TV producer about an idea I have had brewing in my head for over 10 years.  Didn’t do anything about it.  But got confirmation it’s a great idea.  Spent time with an amazing photographer, Nancy Morrison (who took the picture of me in my living room above) – she reminded me that anything is possible when you keep on going and never give up.  This was a tough month where I continued to work my ass off.

4.  April – reconnected with an old friend who I missed dearly.  Thankful to have her back in my life.  Started dating again.  Met the incredible duo who made my videos (we will be doing more work together in 2015) through another friend of a friend and realised that it is OK to be vulnerable.  Sharing my story started to get easier.  I realised at this point my business needed to change direction.

5.  May – started to re-work my crazy TV idea in the background.  As well as creating new programs and workshops for my business.  Working a lot in my business with new clients, Personal Styling and Career Coaching.  Felt like something was “missing”.  Couldn’t put my finger on it, but kept on going.

6.  June – decided to release my new program with a start date of August.  Got derailed and distracted by something that I won’t say out loud!  Did no work on my business, instead procrastinated like a Queen of procrastination.  Needed to get out of my own way and out of my own head again.  Self-esteem back at a low point.

7.  July – Gave myself a “shake” and made the decision to get back to work.  Booked myself some new corporate clients, working steadily one-on-one with Career & Business Coaching clients, making in roads with new program development.  Feeling good about myself again.

8.  August – cut my hair off.  Re-launched my website and business and continued to work on my background project.  Didn’t release my program (believed it wasn’t good enough) but decided to run another workshop instead – booked the date in October and committed to filling a small room of 15.  Did a course in Personal healing & development.  Shared my background idea with another business owner to collaborate, realised I had made a wrong approach so stopped working on it.

9.  September – working on a contract in the city.  Re-building my confidence in what I know and what I have to share and contribute with the world.  Mentoring and teaching Gen-Y’s in the art and science of Personal Brand and Recruitment.  Still working on my programs and workshops, the other idea I mention is still in my mind every single day.  Met Matt Moran and Kate Gibbs.  Start to wonder if I really should do this TV thing or not.

10. October – working like a mad woman.  Ran my workshop and felt super-proud of what I have achieved.  Still a lot of work to do, had a few aha moments of who I want to work with and how…. workshops are more my thing than Online training, but this has to be a part of the business model so back to work on the system.  Started to procrastinate again.  Started to get consumed with something other than my business and my ideas… self-esteem starting to crash again.

11.  November – the busiest time of the year for me.  Working like a maniac and travelling to run workshops.  Everything that could go wrong in my business went wrong.  Instead of fighting it, I decided to let-go.  Even though there are people who want to work with me (and I want to work with them), I needed to just let go.  There was still something in the back of my mind that “wasn’t right” about where I was heading in my business.  Instead of working through it, I went into self-sabotage mode.  Cut my hair again.  That old self-esteem issue rising.

12.  December – realised that I needed to give myself a “break” and stop being so hard on myself.  I noticed that the clients that I am working with are achieving some amazing results.  Also, that the business I have created is actually valuable, but to be fully present with it, I need to be present with myself.  And reconnect to the inner me.  Started yoga and meditation practice.  Reconnected with people in my network, asked for help from others, made a decision about what I will commit to in 2015.  196 is an important number (and you will see what I mean with this soon), made a decision to spend time alone, to be present with myself and to start to like myself again.

Looking back at my year it’s obvious that how I feel about myself is what actually holds me back.  Moving from fear to love and back again.  Self-esteem and confidence rising and falling.  Not trusting myself, trusting myself.  Being a walking contradiction.  Promising things, not doing them.  Then doing them, not finishing things.  Taking ownership of my flaws.  Knowing where I have gone wrong.  Knowing that I have everything that I need because it’s all inside of me.

Celebrating every little detail because right now, in this very moment I am exactly where I am supposed to be.  This has been a significant and interesting year for me, mostly because I can see opportunity in every thing that I have or haven’t achieved.  I am fully aware of all of my flaws.  I have absolute clarity in the direction I am heading and it scares the living daylights out of me.  So, finally as this year comes to a close I have figured out my big “why” (I knew it all along, I wasn’t listening).  Without a “why” you won’t fully commit.  Without a “why” you will stagnate, procrastinate and go around in circles.

Your “why” lies within your story, skills and experience.  Look back at your year and read between the lines of everything that happened.  See where there is a pattern (my pattern is low self-esteem and confidence, which most people don’t believe when they meet me).  This pattern is directly in relation to being bullied.  I had an insanely huge aha moment on Christmas Eve (home alone) and again on Christmas Day where the subject of [my] self-esteem came up.  I know what I am going to do and how I am going to do it.  And I’ve already started.

I encourage you to find your “why” within you.  If you need help with this I am here for you, just ask (you can comment below or send me an email and I’ll chat with you privately).  Look back to move forward and see that there is opportunity everywhere.  Begin Something.  Do it now.

Love S xxxx