Exit Strategy 008 – Limiting beliefs

Hi, I am Exit Strategist and I have a limiting beliefs! In fact, I have several limiting beliefs, and I want to get rid of them.

Have you heard of limiting beliefs? Tony Robbins uses this concept in his work to break through people’s problems. Basically, limiting beliefs are subconscious beliefs that have lead us to certain behaviours in life. Such beliefs could be “I don’t have any money.” Or “I am not good enough” or “I don’t know how to.” They may not even be recognisable as a limiting belief! Instead they could feel like life itself to you.

The good news is that if we made can replace any limiting belief with a new, empowering belief! What if you, truly believed that you CAN do that? That you DO have the money. That you ARE good enough? That you KNOW how to do it? Wouldn’t that be powerful?

One of my limiting beliefs was that I needed to be in full-time employment to have security in my life. Now, that’s a very limiting belief, especially if you are wanting to quit your job. It was tearing me apart! On the one shoulder the little angel is whispering “Quit your job and follow your dreams” on the other shoulder the little devil is shouting “You won’t have any security in life if you aren’t employed full-time; You will end up in the gutter!”

Now, that I have been through the process to replace this limiting belief I feel an enormous amount of relief! I don’t care anymore what my parents, my relatives, my friends or colleagues think. I know that I can live with a reduced level of security (such as a temporarily reduced income) and I don’t feel chained to my work anymore. I know with one hundred percent certainty that I am really going to be able to leave my job when I want! Whether this will be in 2 months or in 10 months! I know that with the right, risk reducing plans I can make the circumstances as comfortable for me as possible.

Of course, there is still going to be uncertainty and I have accepted that. And isn’t an expected uncertainty some kind of a certainty, too?

Exit Strategy 008 – One step back, two steps forward?

There is a common belief that we need to go back before we can progress: Along the lines of one step back, two steps forward.

This may be a financial requirement, such as taking a pay cut by quitting our job, before we can three, four or five times as much. Or it could be less recognition and praise which we loose when quitting one job and starting our dream career from the bottom of the ladder.

A lot of people, me included, are very resistant to going backwards, even if it is progress in disguise. I guess there is an inherent fear that the steps forward won’t come, that we have given up this position that we have worked so hard to achieve for nothing!

So what are we going to do about it? Can we put risk plans in place? Should we just take the leap and hope for the best? Should we run towards the light at the end of the tunnel as fast as we can? Can we really figure out a way to go forward without going back?

Exit Strategy 008 – A life of purpose

I think the most valuable thing we can do in life is to devote ourselves to a purpose! It gives direction to our lives; when we have a purpose we know where we are going and even obstacles and challenges can’t change our direction.

 

This is one of my main objectives over the next year – find a purpose! Sure, people can stop working, they can do ‘fun’ things all day long, but without a purpose this would become boring very quickly.

 

To me, having a purpose is also synonymous with ‘drowning out the voices’: when we find our purpose we don’t hear anymore what other people think we should do. Or maybe we still hear it, but we don’t listen anymore. We don’t care what society expects of us. We do what we are meant to do. With a 100 percent certainty.

 

For some, their purpose may be obvious, they may have such an outstanding talent that it seems they were born to be a dancer, a basketballer, a cook, a writer, an actor, a leader. Other people have more subtle talents, they have a dream, they learn, they persist.

 

But the million-dollar question, of course, is: How do we create a life with purpose? How do we find OUR purpose?

 

John Demartini, an inspirational speaker and personal development guru, works with several methods: He swears by simple affirmations, such as I Know My Purpose, I Live My Purpose, I Love My Purpose. On the other hand, he has developed a complex method of breaking down emotional charges we connect with people, events or places in our lives (the Demartini Method). The idea is, the less emotionally charged we are, the closer we are to our true selves, and therefore our purpose.

 

I think it is important to spend time doing what we are passionate about. It may be travelling, it may be singing, it may be talking to other people, or cooking. Whatever it is, can you imagine doing it every day for the rest of your life? Would you be fulfilled? If yes, it may be time to figure out how to earn money by doing what you love.

 

Now, that sounds like true freedom! Luckily I have a whole year to figure it out!

Exit Strategy 008 – Starting position

Okay, to begin the journey, let’s have a look at where I’m at right now:

 

I am a little wheel churning away in the big corporate world. I have been in my job for about a year – It would be going well, if I didn’t think there was more to life!

 

Consciously or unconsciously, I have put myself in a position where I am a pillar of my team, a strong contributor and performer. My managers think I am gunning for a promotion and am in for the long haul. That was my original idea, but as you see, I have changed my mind.

 

Don’t get me wrong. I am grateful. The job provides fantastic learning opportunities, a regular income and I have made some fantastic friends. But it is still that – a J-O-B. As some people call it Just Over Broke. That, of course, doesn’t mean I’m broke. What it means is there is limited potential:

 

Sure I can climb the corporate latter, and I know there will be some people cheering me on. But, as Steven Covey, author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People said “Many people are climbing the ladder of success every day, only to find that it is leaning against the wrong wall!” So I figure I’d better check the wall first!

 

Alternatively I can go out with my own ideas, follow my passion and earn the rewards for the hard work I’ve put in. Of course, I realise it’s not easy. No regular pay checks, and lots of self-motivation and discipline.

 

Whether leaving the rat race is about money or not – the qualities Napoleon Hill outlines in his classic personal development book Think and Grow Rich are a requirement for anyone wanting to go out on their own: Desire, Faith, making decisions and being persistent are key components to be mastered.

 

Which is why I am taking the carefully planned option – rather than resigning and hoping for something better. I am laying out my strategy and am learning all the necessary skills before entering the new game!

Exit Strategy 008 – It’s the journey not the destination

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about goals. It seems we are obsessed with setting goals: sales targets, weight loss, even our relationships can’t escape the goal-setting mania. People set goals for nearly every aspect of their lives. But just what happens when we get there?

In my experience, it’s often not what we thought it was going to be. The satisfaction is short lived and the reward we associated with the goal diminishes with the new opportunities that have opened up. It may have been recognition, love, money or certainty that we sought, but often when we reach our goal, we want more.

So what happens? We set another goal and start the process all over again. We go from one goal to achieving the next without ever being truly satisfied.

The solution seems simple – it’s about the journey as much as it is about the destination.

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, the creator of the Flow concept (Flow – the classic work on how to achieve happiness, 1992, Harper & Row) has spent much time examining auto-telic experiences (auto – Greek meaning self; telos – Greek meaning goal), experiences which are deemed as fulfilling without focussing on the outcome. According to his studies, when activities become rewarding in themselves, rather than being a means to an end, they are more satisfactory and create more happiness. This seems to be a no-brainer: of course we are going to enjoy activities that are enjoyable!

But the challenge lies elsewhere: How can we turn activities, which will presumably lead to our goal so enjoyable that we don’t really care about the goal anymore? We need to start focussing on our journey as well as the destination. We need to focus on and enjoy the actions – the results will follow!

Exit Strategy 008 – Why blogging my way out of the rat race?

You may wonder why I have decided to blog this journey of mine – there are so many blogs, books, tapes and seminars on this topic, I can’t blame you!

So, let me explain:

Firstly, I am creating this space, not just for me, but for you! Those who have long exited the rat race, who would like to share their experiences, pass on inspiration and encourage those of us who are yet to take this step. Those who are dreaming and would like to see someone else learn the ropes before jumping into the deep end. And those who have never looked any further but know there is more out there than your current life.

Secondly, I have met so many inspiring people, read some fantastic books, and been to some interesting seminars – now it’s time to translate all my ideas into real life! My medium is writing. Here, you will read about concepts and books you may or may not have heard of before and that’s the exciting part: we can create a dialogue, a discussion to share our hopes and dreams, our fears and pain and share our strategies to make some massive changes in our lives.

Thirdly, this is a great way to keep myself accountable. I have set a 1 year timeframe to execute my exit strategy, and of course there are many things to be considered: finances, networks, friends and family, my current job, and so many other things! So these are only a few things I will write about in the weeks and months to come.

Now that you understand why I have decided to blog, let’s go on this journey together! Fell free to leave me some feedback, email me with your tips, tricks, feedback and criticism. Everything is welcome to make this blog motivating, fun and inspirational for everyone!

Exit Strategy 008 – A new beginning!

How often have you dreamt of a life filled with pleasures? A life in which you don’t need to do the 9 to 5 slog? In which you can follow your passion every day, you can reap all the benefits of your hard work, you don’t need to compromise your own values, you choose with whom to work and when?

 

I know I have dreamt of it. And I have decided to make this dream come true! I only have this life and it’s not going to change by itself – so the time has come for some big decisions!

 

Here, I am telling you about my journey. My ups and downs, my inspirations and ideas, my fears and pains and the reactions of my friends, family and work colleagues. And hopefully my journey will inspire you to make changes you have been dreaming of.

 

It may come as a surprise to you that I am planning to remain anonymous. But don’t let that discourage you to share my experiences and learn from my mistakes. You will get to know me in other ways that are much more important than a name, a location or even a face.