Have you ever wondered, “How much do I matter?”
It’s a thought that can take you totally by surprise. One minute you’re celebrating the launch of kids and the winding down of a career or professional path, and in what seems like a heartbeat…..
How much do I matter? Who the heck am I? Where do I fit? What do I want? What’s my purpose?
Yikes…it seems the launch into ‘new life’ isn’t an overnight thing…it suddenly feels like giving birth.
HA! The things nobody tells you – right? Well you’ve got plenty of company. It’s all part of the prep and self (re)discovery required to create an awesome, meaningful, fulfilling, inspired, passionate ‘new’ Life Part II.
So start by reading this. Then go ahead and check off the do I matter question pronto!
Do you know how special you are and how much you matter? Seriously…do you?
In case this sounds like a hallmark card here’s the low down. Of the 7.4 billion people on the planet there is only one You.
No other person has or ever will have the unique blonde of talents, strengths, quirks and experiences that you do. No one else has seen what you’ve seen or felt what you’ve felt. You have insight and understanding and knowledge that no one else does.
You are a pure original with an amazing story that can inspire and teach.
The story of your life, if it were a book, would be a best seller. It’s heart stopping. It’s rich with adventure, intrigue and romance, it speaks of lessons learned, risks taken, failures, successes and a life fully lived.
Your story offers hope and wisdom it has the ability to inspire, teach and heal.
The greatest thing is that it’s still evolving, it’s constantly evolving. New chapters and plot twists are being added all the time, every day even.
As the author of this amazing story you have great flexibility. You can move between genres. You can change outcomes. You can build on what you have or start a new chapter. You can create anything you want.
Last week I was asked to give a presentation called, “What’s Your Story?”
I love hearing the stories of people’s lives, they take my breath away. I’m honored when someone shares their story with me I feel I’ve been given an extraordinary gift, a precious look inside. We become intrinsically connected.
The presentation was set to start in 10 minutes.
I was going over my notes as four women came in and took seats in the front row. “Do you think we’re going to have to speak?” one asked nervously. “I don’t think so…it doesn’t say so,” the woman beside her offered as she reread the session description carefully word for word. “Well I certainly hope we don’t have to talk because I’m not,” another added. They sat bolt upright looking a little uncomfortable. If I had to guess, they were probably holding their breath and wondering if they’d stepped into a hornet’s nest.
I smiled at them hoping to ease their fear. If I hadn’t been preoccupied going over my notes I would’ve introduced myself and told them not to worry that this was going to be FUN.
Actually I was pretty sure we’d be hearing from these ladies in a bit.
I’d brought two guests with me, regular folks and courageous souls who had agreed to be interviewed and share their stories. They knew it wasn’t the shiny sanitized version that I was after but the ‘real’ story the grittier version where we face twists and bumps and are challenged to become all we can be. These are the stories that pull us in and allow us to connect intimately with one another.
My guests didn’t disappoint, they captivated the audience with stories of the unexpected happening in their lives. Times when the human spirit rolled up its sleeves and went to work with an unfathomable ability to problem solve and overcome whatever it was handed. The audience fell in love. Defenses dropped, hearts opened.
The last 20 minutes of the presentation were saved for something special, the turning of the tables. The audience would now be the storytellers…..if they chose.
I introduced the idea of the 6 word life story. My guest shared theirs, I shared mine. It’s amazing the meanings that can be infused into just 6 words. If you aren’t familiar with this amazing exercise check it out.
You have 5 minutes ….
I gave participants 5 minutes to write their 6 word life story. As I watched the clock they wrote. You could hear a pin drop. Five minutes passed quickly.
“Who’s willing to share their story?” I asked.
Almost every hand shot up. The ladies in the front row waggled their hands excitedly, they looked different. Their faces were open and alive. They smiled. They glowed. I went to them first. Their stories were poignant and offered an intimate look into the women standing before us.
The stories filling the room were all like that. We celebrated each other for who we were….all we’d been through….who we’d become.
As storytellers we’d been accepted and embraced; the path we’d walked celebrated. As listeners we’d been touched in so many ways…several people experienced healing, many were inspired, we would all be looking at the world with new eyes.
We all matter….more than we can possibly imagine.
ACTION STEP — Reflect on your life. Think of the experiences that shaped you into who you are. Write your 6 word story.
NEXT STEP – Take this idea to family and friends. Share stories. See what happens.
PS/ Do you know someone who needs to see how much they matter? Please share this with them. It will be an unforgettable experience for both of you.