The Truth Will Set You Free!
Dear Success Seeker,
Let me start by saying bluntly - this newsletter will change your life. Read it at your own risk!
We have a large group of self-employed small business owners and investors in our coaching program and one of the core principles we teach them is called Cleanups, Completions & Deletions. This quarter our entire membership is focused on eliminating the unfinished projects, loose ends and clutter that are bogging them down in life.
As a result of these cleanups our members are clearer and more energized than ever. But as the clutter clears I have noticed something else. Beneath the surface mess I see that people have a massive, hidden cache of issues and situations they are avoiding that keep them completely stuck in their lives. I suspect the chaos and unfinished projects are a subconscious strategy to avoid what I call the 'unconfrontables'.
What is an unconfrontable? It is a situation that brings up so much anxiety and fear in you that you ignore it or pretend it does not exist. It is something you don't want to know, you don't want to look at and you certainly don't want to deal with. These are deep issues you are so afraid to confront that you don't even put them on your to-do list!
A simple example. My much-loved car has over 150,000 kilometers on it. Last year my dealership told me it might need a new engine soon at a cost of over $4000. Recently it started dripping small amounts of oil in our garage. Yet I didn't take it to the dealership; in fact I completely ignored the issue. Why? It was not the oil leak that concerned me. I was avoiding the possibility of bad news which would force me to spend a chunk of money on repairs or even buy a new car.
Unconfrontables are situations you avoid because of the possible negative implications. For example, asking your spouse where they have been might result in your worst fears being confirmed and force you to make a decision you don't want to make. It is so much easier to pretend that everything is okay. Doing a candid assessment of your finances might reveal the fact that you can't afford your current lifestyle. Talking to your child's teacher might require you to face the fact that your child has been bullying others. These are things you don't want to know so you avoid looking at them.
The problem with unconfrontables is that they keep you stuck because you are not living in reality. You are in denial, living in a fantasy world. This strategy rarely ends well. In order to create the freedom and quality of life you want you must confront the truth. As Werner Erhardt of EST said back in the 70's, "The truth will set you free but first it will piss you off!"
Confronting issues frequently does create pain and turmoil in the short term. But in the long term you will always be further ahead when you face the demons you fear!
Are you ready to change your life? Sit down with a piece of paper and make a list of your unconfrontables. What are you avoiding looking at? What are you avoiding saying or doing? What decisions are you avoiding making? What realities are you ignoring? Where are you not being honest with yourself? Here are some examples:
Finances: Calculating your net worth; making an itemized complete list of your debts; creating a budget to see if you are living within your means; selling an asset you can't afford; asking someone for money they owe you; selling an investment at a loss; firing your investment advisor.
Relationship: Confronting an indiscretion or unspoken issue; ending a friendship or romantic relationship; taking action on physical or emotional abuse; coming clean about a secret; leaving a marriage; completing a divorce. (Note: Honesty and full disclosure and honesty renews and strengthens a relationship as often as it damages it.)
Health: Going to the doctor or dentist about an issue; having a check-up; getting tested for an illness where you are at risk; being honest with yourself about an addiction; dealing with your weight or fitness level.
Business/employment: Confronting a performance or integrity issue; quitting your job; firing a staff member; balancing the books, asking for a raise; doing or having a performance review; dealing with a partnership issue.
Investment Real Estate: Inspecting an occupied rental home; evicting a tenant; having an honest conversation with your joint-venture partner; firing a property manager, realtor or contractor; getting a professional to inspect a suspect roof or basement; raising the rent.
These are just a few of the unconfrontables. Make your own list because acknowledging what you are avoiding is your first step to freedom.
When you have a list, go through it and make a plan. Seek out the resources and support you need to deal with these toxic issues. And finally, connect with your courage and take action. I promise it will change your life!
Andrew Barber-Starkey, Master Certified Coach
Founder and President, ProCoach Success System
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Andrew Barber-Starkey is a Master Certified Coach residing in Vancouver, Canada. His coaching program, the ProCoach Success System, is designed for entrepreneurs, small-business owners, self-employed and commissioned sales people who want to double their income while simultaneously doubling their time off within 3 years.
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