Seasons: Everything Is Temporary

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Wisdom is knowing that everything is temporary and life goes through seasons.

I believe that success and happiness should be immediately celebrated. After Tyler died I learned to really live in the moment and be grateful for just one moment of peace or in the joy of a good laugh with friends. Tragedy, loss, and challenges should not drive you to give up. Really, neither one will last. Things are always changing. When we learn to roll through all seasons knowing they are not going to last forever  it is a sign of true wisdom and our growing experience.

When you see people who are very successful that are humble and kind, you are seeing wisdom. Winning lasts only for a day. Quickly that is all forgotten by the world. It is temporary like the summer. It is so important to invest in what really matters and endures.  Which I think is kindness. I think the best use of success is to improve the world around us.

When facing loss, challenges and unwanted change, we could best use those times to learn. We should not let those times push us into complete despair, stopping us from moving forward. We know that winter will end and it won’t be cold forever. Slowly Spring sneaks in and before we know it the whole world is renewed. If we keep moving, we will eventually find ourselves in a totally different place. Good things are always on the horizon, we just have to stay open to them during the hard times. If we let ourselves be defeated and stay down, it is very likely we will be miss the very opportunities that could raise us up and out of that place. We don’t have to stay in difficult times longer than necessary.

Never Give Up!

Be blessed and keep going!

Chelsey

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Loss Lessons: Success

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Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart. -Steve Jobs

I am a big believer in belief.

By that I mean, what you focus on and what you REALLY believe about yourself will manifest itself into reality. We are capable of much more than most of us realize. 

Taking a moment to look around, I see people constantly focused on being the “best”, achieving success and in constant competition with others. (thanks Facebook! 😉 ).

We all want to do well, but there are a lot of different interpretations of success….money, a job title, beating someone else…though these are superficial, temporary examples of success. Many are attracted to physically beautiful, but false characters in movies, tv shows while living in unstable and unhealthy relationships in their “real life”.

I get caught up in this stuff too, hey I’m human, but quickly I am reminded that these things are truly worthless in reality. I learned this lesson from my greatest loss. Death can be a great teacher if we let it. It can teach us to live. 

When we focus on these superficial human ideas and feel that we are successful when we achieve them what does that say about our beliefs? What does that say about what we value in life? What we value in ourselves?

Perhaps success is when you reach a place where you are living your truth, confident in who you are and your purpose in this world, and those temporary, earthly items are no longer needed to validate who you are. You no longer need to “beat” someone else or cut them down to feel superior for a moment. And you will no longer tolerate that behavior from others around you. 

Confident, kind and giving people become the most attractive people you know and become your role models. Instead of your eyes searching for beautiful appearances, they search for beautiful and awakened spirits.

Your eyes open to the journey and struggle of every soul on this planet and how we are all connected, created by the same hand.

Perhaps that realization alone is the real definition of success in this life. 

Never Give Up,

Chelsey

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary. -Steve Jobs

 

Are You Enjoying the Ride?

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In response to my last post I had a friend share some additional information regarding goals including an article and review from someone who had done their master’s thesis on goal setting. Some very interesting stuff! One thing caught my attention and had me thinking from the article review below:

I seldom write comments on any article, but I especially liked this one as it actually corroborates a lot of information in current goal setting research. I wrote my masters thesis in self-concordance, the degree to which a person sets goals that are congruent with ones need for autonomy, competence, and relatedness (the three contributing factors that make a goal either intrinsic or extrinsic), and in the end it seems that the one who meets the most goals is not happier than the one who can enjoy the process.

Why do we set goals? Why do we want to achieve them? Because it makes us happy? Does the process matter? Is winning what it is all about? I’m going to talk about this in relation to competing with horses, specifically barrel racing but it could apply to many other life goals or sports.

The process of winning at barrel racing includes many hours of riding, training, tack maintenance, truck and trailer maintenance, hours of hauling to events, horse health care, feeding, watering, hoof trimming, grooming, working on improving our riding skills and  not to mention the money it takes to do all this! It can take a lot to get to each race! Though the amount of work put into each thing surely varies from person to person, barrel racing can be a tough sport and after all that work and preparation we have less than 20 seconds in the arena to show for it. You get one chance and it is over quick!

It got me thinking about the reactions that come at the end of those competition runs. Of course if you have a good run and win money most people are all smiles. Hit a barrel or a slow run and the reaction definitely varies from a shrug and a pat for the horse to yanking and cranking on the horse and someone in a bad mood for the rest of the day. Then there is the interaction between those who won and those who didn’t. There are those who gloat and go on and on about themselves and some competitors who can’t genuinely congratulate someone else that did well….but then there are also those winners who simply say thank you and return a compliment and those who can have a bad run, congratulate those who did well while confidently looking forward to working on their mistakes and the opportunity to do well at their next run. I would say the latter are the definition of “good sportsmanship”.

Do these reactions say anything about us or what our motivations are? Is it possible that our goals can make us unhappy and that if we are not enjoying the ride, it shows? Do we think to ourselves “I will be happy when win”? Can we lose sight of why we started and actually get so lost in competitiveness that we start to not even enjoy what we are doing?

I think yes, we can be too ambitious and focused only on goals/winning. And yes, it can take the enjoyment out of the “process” and I think we can lose sight of what a privilege it is to even own horse! As well as the responsibly we have as their caretakers to put them before  our pride. How sad would it be to lose sight of that special bond that grows between horse and rider and the awesome feeling when everything comes together when you are training and not competing?

It makes me think back to high school and studying Shakespeare’s plays. I remember Shakespeare’s warnings about the dangers of unbridled ambition. Our ambition can catapult us to great heights only to continue on and ruin all we have achieved if not checked.  Certainly the dangers of hanging our emotions and self worth on these things alone are easy to see. We will end up unstable emotionally and easily discouraged if we face challenges and losses if our self esteem is based on just the win.

So what is my experience with this? I would say so far I have enjoyed the ride most of the time. If I was down or unhappy with my competition runs it didn’t last long. Perhaps it is because my life changed so much and I know how it feels to lose what is REALLY important. I realize that every day is a gift and today should be enjoyed as we are not guaranteed tomorrow. I love competing and I have goals, don’t get me wrong! I like to see my studying and hard work pay off as much as the next person! But goals don’t dominate my journey or happiness. I am grateful for what I have and how far I have come. I think that I value being content and happy so much today after feeling such intense loss and sadness that it would be unlikely that I would ever let goals or ambition ever take any of that away or minimize the blessings I already have. But just in case, I am glad this came up and I can make sure to keep it in mind.

Are you enjoying the ride?

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Never Give Up! Chelsey

Competition, Scarcity and Abundance

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While reading Nick Vujicic’s book “Life Without Limits” I came across something he wrote that struck me and I knew I would have to share. In the Chapter “Trust Others, More or Less” He writes about the importance on knowing how to interact with others and how important it is to have “someone to share ideas with, someone who always give us honest advice, or someone who serves as an encourager, mentor or role model”.

Which I think is excellent advice but what the relationship he wrote about next was the “Fellow Traveler” and it was something I hadn’t heard from anyone else. Though once I started searching I found a lot more on the topic!

First, here is Nick’s description of the Fellow Traveler:

“Fellow Travelers are usually peers, co-workers, and others with similar goals to yours, who are walking on a parallel road. They might even be rivals, but friendly rivals. You encourage and support each other by practicing an ABUNDANCE MENTALITY rather than a SCARCITY MENTALITY.”

So the key words there are abundance mentality and scarcity mentality. I realized after reading this where things go wrong in competition or when interacting with peers who are striving for similar goals and things get competitive. It is that so many are living with a SCARCITY MENTALITY. What does that mean? I will post a visual first to help explain.

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Do you identify with the descriptions? Of course, we all do! Becoming aware of what we are thinking and feeling is the path to self growth and ultimately can lead us to success in reaching our goals. But what happens when we are living with SCARCITY MENTALITY? It sure can make things a lot tougher.

Here is what Nick goes on to say on the topic:

When you believe in abundance, you believe there enough of God’s blessings–enough fulfillment, enough opportunity, enough happiness, and enough love–out there for everyone. I encourage you to take that point of view because it opens you up to other people.

And here is where he really gets to the point:

If you tend to think of the world as a place of scarce resources and limited opportunities, then you’ll see fellow travelers as threats who’ll take what is out there and leave nothing for you.

Competition can be healthy because it motivates you, and you will always find others who want what you want. With an ABUNDANCE MENTALITY, you believe there are rewards enough for everyone, so competition is more about striving to do your best and encouraging others to do the same. An ABUNDANCE MENTALITY  allows you to walk alongside your fellow travelers with feelings of camaraderie and mutual support.

This all really made me think about how I approach fellow travelers and how I could improve my mentality. I think it is easy to be pulled into the scarcity mindset by fear or also by being around others who live with that mindset! Sometimes you have to really evaluate your environment and what you have to do to improve yourself and your growth as a person. I think it is also important to stay focused on yourself and your performance. I think getting too caught up in what others are doing or how they are doing, will lead you to that scarcity mindset! Also, I don’t think that because we have similar goals means that we will have the same path to achieving them! Actually, no one does! That would be quite boring anyway. It is ALWAYS fascinating to me to hear the stories of those who have overcame their challenges, tragedies and achieved their dreams. And not one of them is the same!

Life is the most difficult exam. Many people fail because they try to copy others not realizing that everyone has a different question on their paper.

Definitely encourage, congratulate and support of course! Of course learn from those that you can and share with those what you know freely! Remember that helping people plus your talent equals your purpose! I also think being confident is a huge key to all of this. When you don’t have confidence, you are living in that scarcity mindset and will be reluctant to help others for fear that they will pass you by and take all your resources like Nick explained.

Additionally, being truly THANKFUL for what we have and have already accomplished is another key. In the photo I posted about scarcity and abundance the last two descriptions “They are entitled and fearful” on the Scarcity side and “They are thankful and confident” on the Abundance side. I think that comparison right there tells us all we need to know and I think this is an easy one to identify in ourselves. The important thing to remember is that we can always improve and change ourselves. If we become aware of things we need to improve on, then just do it! We are not trees, we can pick up our feet and go anywhere!

One person that came to mind who really lives with a abundance mindset in the barrel racing world is Fallon Taylor. She has helped so many people by doing free barrel racing tips videos, is always sharing encouraging words online and even offered private video coaching for just $25. I think so many young girls look up to her because she is so open, encouraging and just fun! She obviously has a heart for helping others and sharing her knowledge freely. She is competitive, obviously she made it to the NFR again this year! But she always has seemed to me as a very friendly and approachable person. She also does her own thing, is unique and is confident in that. You can see that in her outfits this year at the NFR! Some people have said some negative things about her style, but I wonder if they know how she gave artists a chance so showcase their work on a huge scale by letting them design an outfit that she wears. I may not be a young girl per-se as I am 29, but she has been a role model for me since I got back into barrel racing with Gigi and I am very glad to have come across her!

So, I hope that this blog helps you today. Maybe to just become a little more aware or maybe change your whole mindset! Nick Vujicic’s book “Life Without Limits” is a really excellent read. If you are struggling to overcome a huge life challenge or just trying to achieve your dreams, you will definitely find inspiration and wisdom in his book. I highly recommend it.

Until next time!

Make sure to watch Round 5 of the NFR tonight!

Chelsey

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Fallon Taylor