“Your future is your property. Because, by definition, it hasn’t happened yet, it exists only in your mind. This means that you can choose to make it whatever you want. The act of making your future bigger than your past is the very act of growth itself: the bigger future is the vision, and growth is what makes it real. A bigger future includes anything you want to see that is an improvement on what is true now.” From The Laws of Lifetime Growth, by Dan Sullivan and Catherine Nomura.
The list of what we want for our future is, I believe, limited only by what we can imagine. Whether or not we actually do achieve our future aspirations is influenced by an almost endless number of factors, including the extent to which we believe in ourselves, have a growth mindset and resource ourselves so that our self belief is grounded in reality. We do that through further study; self development programmes; community involvement; taking our power back in relationships, and finding external support like therapy or life and career coaching.
What limits us more than anything are old patterns of relating and behaving which are no longer suitable for the life we are wanting to create for ourselves. At the root of most of those patterns is fear – the fear of losing relationship; the fear of not being good enough; the fear of succeeding and then having to do even better next time; the fear of losing our security …”
I once saw a video clip of a rock climber lying in a hammock strung between two cliff faces , thousands of metres above the ground. What struck me most in the interview was his statement, “I used to be afraid of heights. In fact, I still am; and that is why I do what I do… That is why I am here. ” He embodied for me that well known advice to “feel the fear and do it anyway.” Deep rooted fears often never go away entirely but when we face them and have the courage to do what brings us purpose in spite of their presence, we move closer to becoming all we were created to be.
I believe that a large part of our purpose lies in getting in touch with our unique brand of creativity, and finding ways of breathing life into that so that whatever situation or life phase we are in we can move in the direction of the future we would like for ourselves. I like the words of St Thomas, spoken so many years ago but still relevant now: “ If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.”
May we all have the courage to bring forth what is within us so that our “futures are bigger than our past”.
Posted by Juliette Jooste Gyure, leadership, life and career coach, specializing in change and transition processes.