Fall! The Season of Opportunity (and an announcement!)

Maybe it’s from all those childhood years of eagerly starting a new grade, or even a new school, in the fall. Or maybe it’s because as fall sets in we know the year is nearing it’s end, leaving us one last quarter to achieve what we set out to do for the year.

Whatever the reason, fall is an energized and inspired time of the year. As a coach, I’m fascinated by how, next to January, September is the second month in which people are most motivated and driven to create positive change or bring to reality ideas and aspirations they’d previously only thought about.

Fall is a natural time for starting new routines, recommitting to previously set goals, laying the groundwork for goals for the next new year, or seeing to an end and reaping the outcomes of efforts started previously but set aside.

Before the bustle and demands of the holiday season, September and October are ripe months full of opportunity. This is the time to refocus your vision, replenish your motivation, refine your plans and next steps, or reorient yourself to your priorities and shed what doesn’t align with them.

I can’t wait for the month ahead because I’ll be connecting with people who are eager to enhance their success and fulfillment and not content to slide listlessly into the end of the year.

And…I am REALLY excited that on Thursday September, 22 at Colorado Mountain College in Breckenridge, CO, I will be sharing tips and strategies for actively engaging in and deliberately claiming your success.

Join me for this free event, OWN IT:  The Secret to True Success AND Fulfillment. Let it be your motivation to plan a long weekend away from your usual grind. Let it be a chance to “retreat” to envision how you will reclaim ownership in creating the success and fulfillment you deserve, and make a concrete plan for how you will make it happen.

Going into autopilot as fall sets in, putting off decisive action, saying you’ll change in January, means you’re losing valuable time. This fall don’t let the sun set too early on your potential, don’t just admire that the leaves are changing into vibrant colors; shine on and be brilliant YOURSELF.

Remember…It’s your career. It’s your life. Don’t leave success to chance.

Liv Sig

PS:  If you have a nagging suspicion that now really IS the time to get busy on creating change and no longer accepting success as others define it for you (and being dissatisfied and disappointed as a result). We need to talk! Reach me today at liv@livsyptak.com or 303.912.5726.

 

Own It_CMC_September 2016

Fool’s Gold: The Emptiness in My Athletic Success

Here’s a little personal story for you.

Many of you know that I have a long history in endurance sports. I’ve completed numerous long distance running and triathlon events, many of them with top of the top quartile results. Race after race I proved that I had the ability to set a goal, train hard, and demonstrate improvements. I was driven by an inner competitive spirit to do more, try harder, go longer, and be faster.

For more than a decade my performance in my training and racing was a massive component of my definition of success. I felt freaking fabulous about my achievements! And, as other people expressed awe and amazement at all that I achieved, I felt even better. I LOVED my success!

Over the years though, there was something stirring under the “hard core” surface. My inner compass for fulfillment and happiness was spinning and sputtering. I just didn’t realize it.

As I stepped up to and kicked the asses of new and bigger challenges, I was becoming more aware of what felt like a growing gap within me. In spite of my additional successes, I wasn’t any more satisfied or any happier. I was checking the boxes on my race list, collecting finisher’s medals. And I wasn’t fulfilled.

I dismissed all of this, though. I convinced myself that this was me being lazy, getting soft, or—horror of horrors—that I might be a quitter! I pushed through. I hardened up. Time after time I decided that what I needed was a bigger goal, or maybe more goals, anything to keep me pushing myself.

All the while, that compass was still trying to find purchase on true north. My needs were growing more acute. But I still pressed on. Turning away from that inner space of emptiness. Yet I continued to fill my pockets with fool’s gold.

It took years (and a significant trauma) to wake me up from the numbed out manner in which I was habitually seeking meaningful success in my life…and not finding it. I began to consider some key questions:

  • What if one more finish line won’t actually deliver the depth of fulfillment and happiness that I seek?
  • What if the goals that I need to work toward and reach are of a different variety altogether?
  • What if I continue to set these types of goals only because it’s what I’ve done for so long and I don’t know what else there is?
  • What if I’m not listening to what my inner drive really wants to achieve?
  • What if a true expansion of my success and fulfillment is only possible if I expand my possibilities and opportunities?

My point with this story is NOT to say that big fat athletic goals like these aren’t great motivators, that they aren’t a component of a successful and fulfilled life, or that they’re not fun. (Holy crap! There is hardly a better feeling than running down the last 50 yards of an Ironman to the cheers of hundreds of people. Seriously!) And there really is an amazing level of satisfaction that comes from committing to a goal so thoroughly and intently in training, and then realizing you can do something seemingly insane on race day. It IS gratifying. It IS fulfilling. Hell yes it is!

I bring up this story to draw a comparison. The same thing happens to us in our pursuit of professional success.

We get conditioned to seek growth in our success at work in ways that may actually stifle our full potential for fulfillment. We lose touch with (or never allow ourselves to know) what will truly satisfy our needs for meaning and purpose in our work. We burn ourselves out working harder and harder to be better, get recognized, land that next promotion, and we don’t recognize the discontent that bubbles under the surface.

Just like I had to, we all must be willing to look at the ways in which our current endeavors or potential future opportunities align with our requirements. (That, of course, requires that we know what we need in the first place…another topic for another time)

Just like I did, we must consider whether our greatest challenge and satisfaction might actually come through roles or opportunities that aren’t directly on the paths with which we’re so familiar.

Just like I had to, we must courageously face our possible outgrowing of what once served so well and accept the challenge of growth in new ways.

And, though I did not do this, we must be willing to act upon our most immediate inclination that we have stagnated in our success.

Take it from me. Running the race to “just finish” is not fulfilling. Sure you get a medal, and maybe a t-shirt, but beware:  fools gold doesn’t fool you for long.

____________

Could your greatest success and fulfillment lie uncovered? If you have any sense that something–anything–is missing let’s talk. Don’t leave your ultimate, most meaningful work and life untapped! Get in touch today! liv@livsyptak.com or 303.912.5726.