3 Questions to Ask Your Essential Self

We’ve been hearing a lot for the past few months about essential and nonessential businesses.  This got me thinking about just what the word “essential”  means.  If you look it up in the dictionary you may find words like:

  • Fundamental
  • Vital
  • Utmost important
  • Necessary
  • Indispensable

Since I’m a life and business coach the words above stand out to me.  You see, I remind my clients often that they are not “extra” “forgotten” and/or “leftover,” but instead vital, important, necessary, and indispensable…in other words they are essential!

#1 Regret of the Dying

Did you know that the #1 regret of the dying is that “they wished they had the courage to live the life that was true to themselves and not the life that others expected of them.” My goodness!  I don’t know about you, but I DO NOT want to have that regret!  

My friend, you and I are a blank canvas and we’re able to paint any picture of our life on that canvas that we want to!  We aren’t meant to live up to the status quo, to take the road most often traveled, to pound our square peg into a round hole!  We are made for more!

Don’t Be Like the Elephant

Have you heard the story about learned helplessness?  It’s a good one. Here’s how it goes:  “When elephant trainers in India catch a baby elephant, they tie one of its legs to a post with a rope. The baby elephant struggles and struggles, but it can’t get free. For days the elephant pulls and strains at the rope. Gradually it learns that struggle is useless and it gives up.

When the elephant grows up, the trainer keeps it tied to the same rope in the same way. And even though it can now break the rope and get away, it stands passively and waits for the trainer to come and get it. It has developed what is called learned helplessness. It has learned that the struggle is useless as a result of repeated failure experiences earlier in life, the elephant has learned a self-imposed limitation.”  (Brian Tracy Accelerated Learning Techniques)

It’s learned helplessness that limits a person’s belief in themselves. This self-limiting belief leads to a lack of self-confidence and self-esteem, which leads to a lack of self-worth, which leads to procrastination and finally settling for mediocrity.

3 Questions to Ask Yourself

Ask yourself these three questions and don’t rush on your answer.  Take the time (because you deserve it) to really reflect on them.

  1. What am I believing about myself? I’m too old?  I’m too young?  I’m underqualified?  I’m not smart?
  2. What do I need to let go of? Comparison?  Perfectionism/  Unrealistic expectations?  Bitterness?
  3. How many years ago did I come up with the thought of what I can or can’t do?

This is your very own glass ceiling that you created for yourself and it must be broken!

Write Out a Permission Slip

Grab a piece of paper and write yourself a letter.  I’m serious.  Do it.  

Dear (your name here), I’ve been so hard on you.  I’m sorry.  Please forgive me.  From this day forward I give you permission to be:

  • Imperfect and messy
  • To be under construction and a work in progress
  • To see the world with new lenses
  • To see yourself as a blank canvas 
  • To look to the future with possibilities and expectations
  • To be curious, to play, and to find your mojo.  

You are fundamental.  You are vital.  You are of the utmost importance.  You are necessary. YOU ARE ESSENTIAL.

With love,
(your signature here)


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