Are you someone that chooses a “word of the year” each year? Historically I haven’t, though I love the idea of setting an intention and theme in that way. That said, looking back at 2018, it’s clear to me that my “word of the year” ended up being “Decision”, even though I didn’t realize it would be that way going into it!
A lot changed for me this year. In a lot of ways, this was one of the best years of my life, with the glaring exception of unexpectedly losing my father.
From a place of optimism, coupled with an admitted motivation to escape the debilitating pain of grief, a fire was lit under me this year to change my life and no longer “wait” for my life to get good, but to start living the way I desired now.
The way that I made that happen was through a series of decision toward my success and goals. Though I can look back now and chain a lot of these decisions together, while I was making them, I did not always know if or how they were going to turn out, and there was a lot of blind faith and moving forward with fear that went into each one of them.
But to decide literally means to “cut off” any possibility of anything else happening, as the word decide comes from the Latin word cis- to cut.
So, a true decision in one direction cuts off all other possibilities of any other direction coming true. As you can see, a decision is a pretty powerful thing!
Here are my most powerful decisions of 2018:
The Decision to be heard.
I often talk about how important an email list is to business growth, and it is. Your email list is the best indicator of your monthly income as an entrepreneur. But there’s more to this than just these metrics. Your email list is your audience, it’s who you’re reaching all over the world, and it’s your community. If you don’t have an email list, it’s a struggle to make an impact with your business, since it’ll be a struggle to properly communicate with those who want to hear your message.
I realized that I was not doing anyone any favors by staying quiet, hidden, and playing small. Without a high-quality and quickly-growing email list, I was not going to reach people with my message and my work, and I was not going to be able to support myself financially. So, I decided to be heard and get my message out there. This meant being totally committed, even temporary obsession, with growing my email list. It worked and has propelled my business growth this year.
The Decision to invest in me.
It’s easy to talk about how we are each our own best assets, but when it comes to practicing that, I was guilty of (and see others guilty of!) putting the investments we need in ourselves last. We can think that investing in education, coaching, support, mentorship, exercising, outsourcing, etc. is a luxury and instead we should spend our money on other things first: family gifts, travel, weddings, things you think you “ought” to save for, things that’d make your parents happy, etc.
I radically shifted my thinking around that this year. I realized that by putting my money towards others first was neglecting my own dreams and desires. No one was going to fight for my goals except for me. After that, it became extremely clear that investing in my future and my business was the absolute best way to spend my money.
The Decision to accept fear.
I have never really been one to not go for something because I’m afraid of failure. That said, I spent years thinking that once I achieved a certain goal, I would no l longer be afraid of it. For example, when I was afraid of spending money on my business, I always thought that once I made a certain amount, I would no longer be afraid of spending money. In reality, fear comes up every single time you push yourself to a new place or new heights. So, instead of waiting for fear to go away or expecting that, I reshaped my thinking to actually see fear as a good thing.
Feeling afraid of something means that I’m growing, and it means you’re growing too!
The Decision to leave my 9-5 job
Life is too short to be spent under fluorescent lighting at a cubicle! This was one of the more difficult decisions on my list as I actually loved my day job and worked really hard to get there. I went back and forth for quite a while on which path to pursue. But, as I’ve learned to do with all decisions, once I decided that I was going to be on my own boss, I dropped all questioning about whether it was the right decision or not, went full force to make it happen, and haven’t looked back since!
I honestly have never been happier than I have been working for myself. It might not be for everyone, but it’s without a doubt right for me.
The Decision to get married!
The easiest decision on the list, but the most life-changing of them all! In 2018 I got to say yes during our surprise engagement in the beautiful Luxembourg Gardens in Paris. We’re getting married in New York City in October and I feel so blessed.
You can check out our engagement shoot here and stay tuned for a wedding update in early January- on the 9-month mark before the big day! I have a feeling the time between now and our wedding is going to FLY by!
Looking at this, I am filled with gratitude for the opportunities I had and the support I had while making these decisions. I’m grateful to have learned how important it is to make decisions often and from your gut’s wisdom- no one else’s.
Some takeaways from this list:
- Get out of indecisions as quickly as you can. Staying unsure and untrusting of yourself is disempowering and a drain of energy.
- Practice making decisions by making smaller ones often- daily even! Listening to your gut is a muscle that needs to be frequently exercised.
- A fear-based decision can be easily disguised as a responsible decision. Try to be observant of why you make your decisions, and if it’s because you’re afraid of a certain outcome, try to analyze it from a “best-case scenario” instead of a worst-case.
- Be thankful for feelings of fear or discomfort- they indicate growth!