I often talk here about this notion that many of us carry that we have to suffer to be good. It’s a cultural limiting belief that is embedded in us from a young age and is reinforced in us throughout almost every stage of our life. For many years I believed that I can only be successful if I suffer. I constantly felt like I had to prove myself.
I defined success based on other people’s ideas for success.
I attached my worth to external outcomes.
I was driven by what other people will think about me. So many of my clients and the women I talk with suffer from the same symptoms… they feel like they can’t fully be themselves and have fun on the way. It’s our culture that honors and elevates masculine energy (reasoning, strength, action) while diminishing and undervaluing the feminine (emotional, nurturing, receptivity). That prioritizes DOING over BEING, PUSHING over PULLING and THINKING over FEELING. Both traits are valuable, each in their own way, and both are needed in order for us to be successful. The secret is to find the balance between the two.
In my last email, in which I shared tips on dealing with overwhelm, I encouraged you to ask yourself the following question: Am I operating from pressure or pleasure? On a practical level, this can look like committing to doing at least one thing a day that brings you joy + infuse joy into the mundane. For example: if you don’t like washing the dishes, listen to an inspiring podcast while you’re doing that, ake yourself a cup of tea in your favourite mug and light a candle as you’re sitting down to work at your office desk, add a few drops of your favourite essential oil to a piece of cloth and place it at the bottom of your shower to get the aroma into the steam, make a beautiful playlist to listen to as you’re cooking, etc. Think about bringing pleasure to all your five senses everyday. On a mindset level, it’s about changing the driving force behind your doing, I love the following distinction: TREASURE HUNTS VS. ACTION PLAN. You can apply it to anything you are working towards - whether it’s a health goal, a career goal or a personal goal. Sometimes an action plan can feel very restrictive and like a huge undertaking. We love a good plan, because having a plan allows us stability and control. And yet… Action plans require effort, which can add a lot of pressure. And often strips the process of building the life you want of any joy, creativity, or enjoyment. But it doesn’t have to be that way! To infuse a sense of pleasure and ease back into achieving your goals, try thinking about it like a treasure hunt. Here’s why...
Treasure hunts are an adventure. And adventure = fun!
Your path to find treasure isn’t linear, it’s curvy and full of windings, you’ll have to have multiple stops along the way to rest, reflect and reassess. Each stop provides new information and learnings that help lead you to your next destination. Each stop provides you with an opportunity to make sure you remember to nourish yourself (body, mind and soul) along your journey.
And the most obvious, you’re looking for... TREASURE!
In a culture that prioritizes doing and business, and defines success by achievements and external outcomes, it’s easy to forget about the journey. Treasure hunts require curiosity and exploration. They’re not just about the destination — they’re about the journey, too.
I can tell you, without a shadow of a doubt, that the most wonderful outcomes in my life happened when I was truly following joy. When I was following what lights me up. Over the years I became so committed to this practice that whenever I wasn’t having fun, whenever things felt heavy and draining, not only I was able to recognize it, but I was able to pause and check in with myself, and often see it as a sign that something in my life is out of alignment.
What treasure are you looking for? And how can you shift from action plan to treasure hunt?