Do you remember those dolls you had to wind up? They had a metal butterfly-like key permanently sticking out that you’d twist and twist until it couldn’t turn anymore. Then, music or joyful sounds would play, and the toy would move jubilantly for a while until it had expended all its energy and sulked to a stop.
That’s how we humans operate too. Our go-go-go depends on several known forces meant to wind us up and send us off to shake it out. Scrimp on one (or many), and you’ll notice faster energy depletion.
And the principle is the same whether you need a complete life detox or just to make a few fundamental changes that put you on the road to better health. You know what you should be doing, but if it was so easy, you would’ve done it already.
So then, how do you identify and establish your ideal conditions for enduring success?
Connecting to our ongoing focus about purpose, this week, I’ll discuss the scientifically proven health benefits of living with less fear and more intention. I’ll share a test to help you determine if self-sabotage is hindering your progress. Then, regardless of your goal, I’ll load you up with pro tips to get you on the right track and reveal the winning formula for long-haul success.
What You’ll Learn in this Episode:
- Slaying the gremlins inside your head
- Why we hesitate to pursue a more meaningful life
- Reaching the global community in a more profound way
- Signs from your body that you’re doing the right thing
- Celebrating the imagination phase
Listen to the Full Episode
Featured on the Show:
Are you ready to kickstart your own winning formula? The countdown is ON, so join us right here for the completely free 5-Day Purpose Challenge, which begins next week. Just because you have to do the work doesn’t mean you have to do it alone. My signature program got a facelift, so check out Year of Transformation right here and let me know what you think.
- Join the Purpose Challenge
- Join the Expats on Fire right here
- Join Year of Transformation
- Sundae’s Facebook Business Page – Sundae Schneider-Bean LLC
- Sundae’s Facebook Group – Expats on Purpose
- Victor J. Strecher’s book: Life on Purpose
Catch These Podcasts / Articles:
- EP31: Lack of Purpose is Life-Threatening
- EP243: Intentionally Lucky with Rachel Pope
- EP244: Loving & Leaving Well with Amel Derragui
We’re delighted by our nomination to the global Top 25 Expat Podcasts!
Full Episode Transcript:
Hello. It is 7:00 am in New York, 1:00 pm in Johannesburg, and 6:00 pm in Bangkok. Welcome to the Expat Happy Hour. This is Sundae Schneider-Bean from www.sundaebean.com. I am a solution-orientated coach and intercultural strategist for individuals and organizations. I am on a mission to help you adapt and succeed when living abroad and get you through any life transition.
What has been proven to add years to your life, reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke, chop your risk of Alzheimer’s by half, help you sleep better at night, increase your good cholesterol, improve your relationships and your sex life?
You’re probably scanning your brain to recall if you’ve seen any miracle drugs announced on TV recently.
But it’s not that at all. It’s not a drug. It is Purpose.
I’m not kidding. Purpose has this impact on our lives, on our bodies, on our wellbeing, at the very core. You might recall my podcast: Lack of Purpose is Life-Threatening where I share the research from Victor J. Strecher’s book: “Life on Purpose, How Living for What Matters Most Changes Everything.” And there, he lays out the research and the science, right? When you think of the benefits, I asked myself, “Why aren’t we talking more about this? When there’s so many ways we’re looking to improve our lives and to feel better. Why not purpose as our go-to?”
I’ve asked myself, “Well, what do you think it is? Why do people hesitate to find more purpose and meaning in their lives?” Well, with the world on fire right now, it just might really feel selfish. We don’t even think about that because there’s so much else going on. But look at the health benefits, if we do. Think about how much more capacity you would have to show up and make an impact in the world if you’re coming from that place of health and energy. Maybe you think that purpose is something that you find and you haven’t found yours yet. Or maybe you think you just don’t have time for that. Or that purpose is for people who are different from you. Maybe they’re more talented, are luckier, but that is not the case.
We’ve been talking about purpose on Expat Happy Hour for the last few weeks. You might recall an interview with Amel Derragui in episode 242 where we talk about the importance of living with purpose from the beginning of loving your people and leaving well when you live a globally mobile lifestyle.
Dr. Rachel Pope in episode 243, talked about how important purpose is in really showing up in your life for what matters and to make an impact on other people. And what both of them had in common was that they spoke of intention, support, and accountability. Both Amel and Rachel are examples of how by living on purpose, they’re able to impact their global community in ways that are much more profound.
So today we’re going to continue our focus on purpose by looking behind the scenes of what it really takes when you’ve made that decision to focus and live with more purpose. Victor Strecher says that being aligned with your purpose is a dynamic activity. Not a one-shot accomplishment.
So one message that I really want to make sure that it’s clear is this is not a magic bullet that finds you. Okay. So I’m going to share what I’ve noticed over the years of working with my clients as they transform their lives.
And I want you to know what to expect. And I tell you, I’ve lived this. I understand what it feels like. So I’m going to share really from the heart, what to expect so, when you are ready to say, “Yes,” if you’re like, “You know what, Sundae, you’re right. I’ve had this hunch that I’m not living with as much purpose and meaning as I could. I know, deep down in my body that there’s a niggling sense of lack of fulfillment, or there’s this motivation that weighs, that’s not just impacting my life, but actually impacting the lives of the people I love. Or stopping me from impacting other people’s lives in really positive ways.” Right?
So if you’re at that place, pay attention. Because if you’re ready to say, “yes,” this is what I see happening.
When you finally say, “yes,” you’re like, “You know what, I’m gonna do the thing,” right? Whatever that thing is for you.
Maybe it’s, “I feel a lack of purpose and I want to commit to a process to find more.” Maybe it’s that. Or maybe it’s like, “Hey, I know what I want to do, but I just haven’t taken that first step to make it happen.” Right? Whatever it is for you, whether you have no clarity or clarity, the same thing applies. As soon as you commit and say, “yes,” this is what’s going to happen.
Okay, what you think is going to happen, it’s going to be like high fives. Woohoo! I’m gonna do it. I’m finally doing the thing, but that’s not what happens. I would say eight or nine times out of ten, you say the “Yes” to go forward and then your body will say, “No,” in fact, it will scream, “No.” So what? And you’re like, “Sundae, I don’t understand. Usually you have to listen to your body.” But this is different, this is not from your body. This is actually from a place of fear.
So, because this is what I’ve noticed happens is something that when I was sharing this with my friend, Cath Brew, she shared a quote from one of her spiritual leaders or spiritual teachers, and the phrase is this,
Excuse my French, but your shit knows that you’re coming for it.
When you get that response in your body where you’re like, *gasp* “What have I done?” Your shit knows you’re coming for it.
And what that means is all the mind garbage, all the gremlins in your head. All of that that you carry around knows it’s going down, knows it’s going down. And I can tell you what, just because I know how this process works does it mean I’m immune to it.
Very recently. I’m just giggling because it’s so happening to me right now. But very recently, I made a commitment to my own transformation to live more on purpose in alignment with something that’s really important to me and I sought out the right support system for this, right. I was looking for a service provider that would help me very specifically to create this project. And I finally found the right people, amazing people and I’ll was like, “Yes. Great team, in line with my values, within the budget I had in mind.” Celebrate, right? Okay. So what I wanted to tell you, I wanted it right now. I wanted to tell you about it when I was going to hit send on the email. And right when I was about to say that to you, I noticed this swell from my body of wanting to vomit. I’m not kidding.
So when I even thought about the moment where I was sending the email to say, “Yes,” my body wanted to vomit. And you’re asking yourself, “Why does that make any sense?” Right? Because I know that when I do the thing, when I have now up-leveled, when I’m saying, “Yes,” to aligning even more closely with my purpose, with adding even more meaning in my life and the lives of others and the way that I am designed to do that. Then as, you know, for my work, Amy G Dala, right? The amygdala, all the gremlins in our heads are going to rise. And I had my own list that came up.
So honestly, I did not want this episode to be about me. I wanted it to be about the process. But for some reason, I feel like I need to share with you how this comes up, right? So I started to notice after saying, “Yes,” all the bullshit that was coming up. So I said, yes, I think it was like a Thursday, sent the email on a Friday, and then, “Whoo. Whoo, let’s do this.” And then, you know, what, like, Saturday morning, Amy was kind of whispering to me. She was whispering to me things. They were toxic, but they were so quiet that they were coming into my body.
So I’m not yet ready to tell you all the details of that because I think it’s probably more important for another episode. But one of the thoughts, one of the things that she was whispering to me is, “You’re not going to do this. You’re not up for it. You’re not good enough for this.” Right? So I had these things of, “You’re going to upset people.” These are some of the thoughts that we’re coming up with. “You’re going to disappoint people.” So, all of these things were coming up.
And of course, if I believe those thoughts, I’m going to say, “Oh, red buzzer. Stop. Stop the clockwork and let’s reverse and not do it.” But here’s the thing when that happens, it is actually a really good sign. The same thing happened to me when in 2011 I decided to do an advanced coach training, even though I was a certified coach, with Dr. Martha Beck. And I knew, I knew when I said “yes” to that, it wasn’t going to be about better coaching competencies. It was about me working through all the things that I have inside that block myself.
So, if you were in a situation where you’re like, you’re ready to say yes to something but then your whole body revolts afterward, then actually, it could be a really good sign. And you have to know the difference between intuition and fear. And, this is totally coming from a place of fear, and not from intuition.
So here’s what you can think, might be coming up if it’s coming from a place of fear. So if these things come up in your mind, then it’s probably coming from a place of fear and self-sabotage.
All right, here we go. We got a list. Number one: It will be difficult. Right? Like duh. Anything worth working for is hard but this is what’s going to come up. “Uh, it’s gonna be difficult” like you don’t got what it takes.
Number two: It’ll take a long time. Again, same thing. You want fast and not sustainable. Fast and easy meaning, not something you could have already done, right? It will take a long time is a sign, actually, that it is something sustainable and worth it for you.
Number three: No one will help me. Like, what is that? No one will help me? Of course. Not, unless you don’t ask anybody. There are so many people out there that could support you.
Number four: I’m not strong enough. Is that a whisper that’s happening to you? Do you have that thought too? I’m not strong enough. Well, like for real. Can you look at what you’ve already gone through in your life? The fact that you’re still standing after this global pandemic is a sign that you are strong enough, right?
So, these are the things that come up. I’ve got more, but these are some of the top favorite things that are coming up. For example, I’m too busy. I’m too busy. That one sounds really legit, right? Like, that’s not really a fear thing. That’s just facts. But is that true? I’m too busy. You’re too busy to positively, impact your life, your health, and the lives of other people, or do you just not have your priorities straight? Or are you just hiding from doing the hard work that it takes to live in alignment with your goals and your values?
Or one of my other favorites is, I am different from others who are living the life they really want. I am different from the others. That’s not true. The only difference is that they walked from having your feet in the fire, like, you feel like you have right now and they took the next step.
All right. So if any of those sound familiar, do not worry, you’re not alone. As I just said, I was there on Saturday and I almost vomited just now telling you about it. So it is normal. It is normal for us to have those thoughts.
And what I’ve learned in the last decade is, I think I’ve shared this on another podcast. I was kind of naive. I thought we would have those thoughts and then we would dissolve them and they would be gone forever. And that’s not true. We have those thoughts. We identify the ones that are our favorite tunes and then they come back every time we’re up-leveling. Every time we’re really stepping further into what’s most important to us, they come back. And we just make choices on how we interact with them differently.
Okay. So there you go. If you’re on the brink of something, where you really feel like you’re stepping into your purpose more, or at least you want to even figure out what that is and you’re having that negative reaction, let’s celebrate because I think we found something that is important to you.
Okay. Number two, who we’re gonna dive into a pop quiz because here’s what happens next. After we’ve gone through sort of that, shame-storm of fear. Now to set you up for success, what really happens when you’re going toward purpose and you are working on transforming your life. The smartest thing you can do is identify the ideal condition to actually set you up for success. Right? If this isn’t a quick one-and-done, this is like something you work on heads down and you do the work for something sustainable. You’re going to have to have the right conditions to stay in it for the long-haul.
Okay. So let me check in with you, we have a little pop quiz.
What areas in your life do you think could hold you back from having the energy and focus to really, really make that kind of transformative change in your life?
So number one: Sleep. How are your sleep habits? Two: Physical activity. Are you sweating at least 30 minutes a day or at least three times a week? Okay, one sleep, two physical activity. Three: Are you monitoring the food that you put into your body? Is this food, giving you proper energy, or is it fast burn and crash. And number four: What kind of liquids are going into your body? Are we talking about so much coffee that you’re fried or too much alcohol that you crash when you’re watching Netflix? What’s going on with the liquids that you put in your body?
Those are some very basic things that they look at with my clients when we get started. Because if you’re not sleeping well, if you’re not moving your body, if you’re not eating and drinking in ways that are sustainably good for you, all the other work is going to be sabotage.
And just as a caveat I want to say this for my listeners, who are in that, sort of perimenopausal age or menopausal age. I always tell my clients, go get your blood work done. Because if you’re feeling depleted, or if you’re feeling like your emotions are swinging left, right and center. I can’t coach against biology. And if you’re going to spend all of your feeling like you’re working against these wild things happening your body hormonally, you’re not going to have the energy to really focus on the thing that you want to do.
So if you’re feeling like your hormones are out of control or let’s say, you’ve got depleted iron, something like that. It’s always good to talk to a doctor because even with the right support system without your body being supported at that deep level, that can be hard to make progress.
Okay, so we have done number one, we did the mind check. What are the horrible things that the amygdala is whispering to you to try to sabotage you, right? Let’s celebrate that. Because now we know that you’re up-leveling and you really pick something that is meaningful for you. Two, we looked at the conditions that need to be focused on for you to really do this for the long-haul. If you’ve already done those two things, you are setting yourself up for massive success.
Okay, the third thing, if you really are in it for building on purpose and meaning in your life and working towards transformation. The third thing you want to do is create really good boundaries because if you’re going to make changes in when you go to bed and how you exercise and what you’re eating and how much you’re drinking, and all of that, then you’re going to need to have new boundaries around those things. Let’s say you’re going to put in the time to do some research. Who is going to then, take over the household work when you normally would be doing that, or take care of the kids, right? What are the boundaries that need to change so that you can invest differently in yourself?
One big thing. I often see my clients do is they skip an important step after they create new boundaries. They forget to communicate them to the people who are impacted. So you have to communicate those boundaries and get the people in your life that are impacted on board to say, “Hey, here’s the thing I’m trying to change. Would you be willing to flex in this way?” Right? So boundaries is number three.
Okay, how are we doing so far? This is big stuff and I’m sharing all of it because I don’t want to leave you guessing on how this happens. I really do want to pull back the curtain and share with you what it really takes to create these wild transformations, that you’ve heard here on Expat Happy Hour from my clients, from Year of Transformation. So that when you see other people who are successful and living the life that they have dreamed of, you know the work that goes behind it. At least the work that I know is necessary and that I see with my clients.
Okay. Number four is: Shake things up. Number four is shake things up. And this is what I mean by that. To be honest, by the time people have come to work with me, these are really smart people and I say to them if the answer was so easy would have figured it out already. So we have to do something different. And what I’ve noticed is that most of the people that I work with, have worked really hard on trying to do things like pros and con lists or research and they’re very much in the left side of their brain. And the irony of that is we’re trying to solve a right brain question with our left brain and that’s not going to work. Right?
So usually when you’re trying to identify, “How can I create this life with more purpose and meaning, or how can I create this new thing?” Whether it’s a book, or a podcast, or a new way of creating balance in your life, or a new way of parenting, or whatever it is for you. How do we do that? You need to tap into the right side of your brain that is tied to your intuition, tied to creativity, right? Because we’re dreaming of something that doesn’t exist yet. This is not like — I always say, this is to my clients, this is not the year of tweak. It’s the Year of Transformation.
So we are dreaming about a life that does not yet exist. And it’s not just one tweak here, one tweak there. It is a whole new way of engaging, with yourself, with those you love, and the projects that mean the most to you. So, we need to use our right brain to figure that out. And that process is very embodied. Right? You’ve got to be in your body to be able to do this work. And for some people when we’re in that space, it might be very new for them. They’ve never done anything about it before.
For others, it might feel really fun because they haven’t allowed themselves a space to do that. So we do a lot of things with our right brain activities, a lot of things tied to our intuition and we do things with imagery and our imagination, and even my clients who hate imagining things, get crazy results from this phase. So you gotta shake things up.
Again. You guys know the whole Einstein quote about doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result, is the definition of insanity. It’s the same principle.
Okay. We are almost there. After all of that. This is kind of liberating, isn’t it? We get to detox the crap in our minds. We get to cleanse our lives. Setup really healthy patterns for our well-being, in terms of physically and also emotionally with our boundaries with people. And sort of take back some control in our lives, set new boundaries, get off the sidelines of our life and say, “Hey, this is how I want to spend my time.” We’re shaking things up. We’re kind of allowing new ideas to come.
And then number five is: We had to do the work. Now that we have this picture of what we want and we’ve established these healthy ways of engaging with our health and the people around us, you got to put your cheeks in the seat. Ladies and gentlemen, like, DO THE WORK. And this is why I do not promise this whole thing of overnight success. Because it doesn’t exist.
Most people say that overnight success takes 10 to 15 years. But what I’ve seen in my work, and this is why I actually created Year of Transformation. I noticed with my clients when we work together for three months and they turned to me and kept asking, “Can we do another three months,” another three months. It was when we hit that 12-month mark that they made it happen. It was sticking with it and staying committed and you do the work because all the things we just mentioned, take some time and implementation to really integrate and make it a new behavior, a new way of being.
And if you’re going to do something like, change your job industry or write a book, or create a podcast or grow your business, those things actually take a little time. So that is what you do next, is you do the work. And here’s what’s really beautiful about that. When you start doing the hard work things are not going to turn out the way you thought.
It’s going to be harder than you expected, or you’re going to have setbacks and that is what’s so beautiful about going back to all the mind crap we talked about at the beginning because now you’re going to know you’re going to name your enemy, right? What do they say? “Name it to tame it.” It’s from Bill Lipton, name it to tame it. You’re going to know, “Hey, that’s just me sabotaging myself. That’s not true. I can do this.” “Oh, wait a minute. Maybe I’m just tired today. I need to get better sleep.” And it creates this positive cycle where you continue to take steps on your goal and your dream and you don’t give up.
And we’re going to hear from an actual client next week about how she took her wild goals and actually transformed them and is living what she said is her dream, now. This is the process that you’re going to hear about, as well next week. And the beauty of all of this is when you get there, you don’t only just get the thing that you were going for, but your whole life is better. You’re making an impact on your health, on your mental health, your physical health. How you’re engaging with your loved ones. How you’re making an impact in your community or your business, right? The boundaries that are clean with the people that are around you. Whatever, whatever it is. It’s in your full life. Everything benefits.
And the funny thing that I hear from people who go through this process is they say, “You know what, my life isn’t easier. I just have better tools to face the challenges.” It’s not like after all this in your life is smooth sailing, right? Because let’s say you want to start a business and now you have your business. Okay. Now what? You have your business now have to grow it. Or let’s say you’ve grown your business, now, you have a new level of client expectations to deal with, right? It doesn’t mean that your life gets more simple. But you have better tools to manage the complexity.
And that is why each and every step of this is worth it. That is why I say it changes the trajectory of your life. Because like one of my clients said, she says, “She has the tools to face any challenge. Whether it’s her marriage, her health, her relationships, work, or her community.”
And if you’ve noticed all of the podcasts that we’ve been talking about around purpose, the themes are commitment, support accountability, little dose of patience, and celebrating your steps along the way.
So purpose has no magic bullet, but that is certainly the winning formula.
All right, I’ve shared a lot with you today and I shared more than I actually planned on. But I want you, I want to demystify this about purpose. Purpose is about impact. It’s about impacting your mental health, your physical health, the ways in which you have healthy relationships with others and the way in which you add more purpose and meaning in your life. I want you to see, in fact, it’s actually quite simple.
So if you want to dive in more to this, join us in the Purpose Challenge, it starts September 13th, in my private community Expats on Purpose. It’s one of the highlights of the year, according to my community members and it’s a free five-day challenge where we’re going to dive into each of the phases I mentioned in the episode today. So you can reduce your stress, so you can spend more time, more meaningfully, so you can get mentally and physically healthier and define for you, what “on purpose,” means, and really shift from a negative mindset and energy to a positive one.
All right. Join me. I’d love to have you. It is one of the highlights of my year as well.
And for those of you who are listening to this and are thinking, you would love to have me by your side during this process and you don’t want to figure it out yourself, then check out Year of Transformation in the show notes.
Thank you for listening today to Expat Happy Hour. This is Sundae Schneider-Bean.
I found a quote as I was reading through Victor Strikers’ book again, and he’s speaking of his experience with Lawrence M Krauss. And Lawrence is an American-Canadian Theoretical Physicist and Cosmologist and he has talked about this question of, Is their purpose in the universe? Like, does the universe have a purpose? And should it depress us? If we think that it doesn’t. And here’s his answer to that. He says, “Through an awe-inspiring cosmic history we find ourselves on this remote planet. In a remote corner of the universe endowed with intelligence and self-awareness. We should not despair but should humbly rejoice in making the most of these gifts and celebrate our brief moment in the Sun.” And that folks is exactly what today’s episode is about. What can we do to truly celebrate our brief moment on the Sun?
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