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Stacey's new carI know, I know – “the new car shot” is a complete internet marketing cliché – but I couldn’t resist!

Doug and I hadn’t bought a new (to us) car in over 10 years – and the cars we had been driving were 16 and 18 years old, both with over 200,000 miles on them.

When our trusty old Subaru gave up the ghost, we knew we had a big decision to make, but here’s what I want you to know: we started the process by first determining how we wanted to feel – who we wanted to be – throughout the whole experience.

I didn’t want to feel constrained by money, time or energy in making the decision. I wanted to feel affluent, joyful and decisive. And I was.

You see, I believe any big decision isn’t really about deciding how much to invest (whether it’s thousands of dollars or hours), as it is about saying YES to your deepest desires and making a decision to create them in your life.

Your desire is God, the Universe, Source Energy (whatever you want to call it) tapping you on the shoulder, saying, “It’s time for you to grow into who you’re meant to be.”

When I finally GOT that the key to a happy and successful life is to start with how I want to feel and who I want to be rather than what I want to do or have – everything in my life changed.

In this week’s blog I’m sharing an excerpt from an interview I did with Stacy Rowan, president and founder of Custom Built Life, where we talk about exactly how to do that. And because I don’t have room here to touch on all the things we covered, I’m giving you full access to the audio too!

Before I share some of the best take-aways from my interview with Stacy, I should mention that she holds a BS in chemical engineering from a Top 10 undergraduate program.

You can learn more about her by listening to the audio of our call, but suffice to say that not too long ago she was much more comfortable in the realm of science than spirituality.

In our conversation we focused on what we had learned in the book, The Happy Pocketful of Money, by David Gikandi.

Happy Pocketful of Money is not your average personal development book because it largely focuses on quantum physics, and since science is Stacy’s comfort zone, the book really resonated with her.

Stacy explained that her mind is always tempted to question concepts in some personal development books, especially those that rely on the Law of Attraction.

Reading them, she’ll often think, “How can this be?” But in Happy Pocketful of Money, the science made her comfortable and able to say, “Okay, this isn’t just something that I would love to be true or that’s wishful thinking, but there is science behind it that makes sense.”

“And that’s not to say,” she continued, “that I understood all the science that they explained, but having my background really helped me feel comfortable with the material and understand it better.”

For Stacy, one of the biggest takeaways from Happy Pocketful was the concept that our reality starts with being. So, if we want to experience wealth, we have to be wealthy. If we want to experience confidence, we have to be confident.

Leap and the net will appearIn other words, our reality comes from our beliefs, and comes from being what we want to be.

And those beliefs lead to thought; those thoughts lead to speaking, our speech and thoughts lead to action, and our actions lead to experience.

“I know for myself,” Stacy said, “that for much of my life I was living by ‘if then’ statements. I’ll be happy ‘if this’ happens. ‘If I get an A on a test, then I’ll be happy.’ ’If I get this job, then I’ll be happy.’ ‘If I can get a promotion, then I’ll be wealthy.’ “

“And the way it really works,” Stacy says, “is the exact opposite to that.”

Stacy and I next talked about my experience of believing for years that I could leave my hospital job if my husband sold his first book, and how it happened that I quit my job on April 2nd of this year – and he sold his first book on April 8th.

(Again, if you haven’t heard the whole story, you really need to – so listen to the audio, okay?)

Stacy loved my story because she thought it perfectly illustrated the truth behind the Buddhist saying, “Leap and the net will appear.”

But she pointed out that often what happens is people will take a leap and find that the net is not there. And they say, “Hey, what happened? I leapt but the net didn’t appear!”

But here’s where Stacy revealed the key: the important piece is the belief. “So,” she said to me, “if you had quit your job and then said, ‘Oh my gosh! How is this going to work? How are we going to get the money that I got from that hospital job? How are we going to pay the mortgage today? How are we going to feed ourselves and our child? Oh, I just don’t know if this is going to work’ you might have had a very different experience. But what was beautiful was that you felt the opposite of those worries – you felt positive and expansive.”

“You believed it,” she continues, “on a deep level. You knew it was right. But people who think, ‘Okay, I am going to leap because they tell me the net’s going to appear’ – they don’t have the belief – they are not already energetically in the place – it’s not going to happen.

“Again, we have all these clichés and little sayings that people want to believe but they don’t understand how they work on a scientific level.”

That’s why, Stacy says, “there are aspects of that belief which aren’t clear or reproducible. Because people don’t understand the science behind them. And what I love is that this book [Happy Pocketful] explained it – and you experienced it.”

Again, to get the full story and the complete “how to” take the cliché to reality, you really must listen to this audio – and you’ll find it here.

For more insights and wisdom from Stacy, don’t forget to visit her at Custom Built Life.

If you liked this post, I think you’ll enjoy the free weekly Special Delivery eZine. Just sign up here and it will be delivered to your inbox every Tuesday!

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Griffen and StaceyGriffin had his first soccer game with the HFC Academy Soccer League last weekend.

The game started at 8 am and in order to be at the field in time for the warm up he had to wake at 6:30 – a full hour before he’s usually up for school!

As you can see from his smile after the game, it was well worth the effort. I think his smile actually tells an even better story that started last spring when he tried out for the league.

You see, he had played several seasons in a local “recreational” league, but Academy requires a much higher level of drive and determination.

When he tried out for the league, he was placed with kids who had played in Academy the previous year and the difference in skill level was dramatic. “I felt like a chump out there with those Academy kids.” was his assessment.

Griffin is naturally talented at many things, but athletics is not one of them. Because of that, he can be very hard on himself when he feels he’s not succeeding.

Of course, because so many of us can give up when the going gets tough, questioning whether we’re actually succeeding or just struggling, I thought I’d take on that topic in this week’s blog.

It’s funny: Griffin is so naturally talented at most things, that for a time, I actually worried that he would never feel the immense satisfaction that comes from working hard in order to achieve a desired result.

Then came soccer.

Since he joined the “elite” soccer league that’s trained by professional coaches (compared to the relaxed recreational league that’s led by well-meaning but generally unskilled parents), he’s had to deal with the frustration that comes from playing with kids who effortlessly seem to get the results which elude him even after a lot of practice.

But Griffin is learning something much more important than how to trap and pass the ball across a field.

He’s developing a work ethic that will serve him well in all areas of his life. He’s learning that it feels good to put in time and effort to become the best he can be.

I’m constantly reminding him what a gift this is. I do this because I want him to know that the genuine pride that comes from accomplishing things after working hard is one of the best feelings in the world.

From my own experience I believe you get to own accomplishments like Griffin’s from a deeper place because you work so hard for them.

Succeeding or StrugglingWhen you work hard for something important to you, you develop your “perseverance” muscles. You learn to manage your thoughts and emotions and not let them manage you. You hone the tools that will serve you for the rest of your life.

Working hard for yourself and something you believe in is powerful stuff. It feels amazing.

And that, in a nutshell, is the difference between hard work and struggle. Hard work feels amazing. Struggle feels defeating.

With hard work you dig deep to find that extra bit of effort that you didn’t think you had in you.

With struggle you feel sorry for yourself that it didn’t come easily.

If you investigate your feelings, you’ll know by the way you feel whether what you’re doing is worth it.

If whatever you’re doing doesn’t feel like it’s worth the effort, you need to stop.

If it does feel like it’s worth the effort—no matter how hard you have to work at it—you need to be grateful.

The truth is…you don’t know what went into anyone’s accomplishment.

Have you ever looked at someone with “talent” or “success” and thought how nice it must be for them to have so much?

I can tell you I do it all the time.

But then I look at them a little more closely, and I realize they were willing to do things I wasn’t or am not willing to do…every time.

Or I realize – as with my current dream to publish the book I’m writing, The Pain Body Play Book – that if they can do it, so can I.

I just need to keep at it.

Keep writing the manuscript. Keep rewriting the manuscript. Keep writing (and rewriting) the book proposal and query letter. Keep sending and resending them until I get the book published.

Yes, it’s hard work. But it’s connected to my deepest desires to be of service and share my gifts with the world – my purpose – and that makes every bit of effort worth it.

And you know what?

I know it’s doing the work that connects me to my purpose – and that actually doesn’t have anything to do with the book being published.

When the book gets published? That’s just icing on the cake.

If you still can’t tell if your succeeding or struggling, it’s probably because you’re not clear on your purpose. Luckily, I can help you with that one! Just sign up for your Discover Your Purpose Strategy Session here.

If you liked this post, I think you’ll enjoy the free weekly Special Delivery eZine. Just sign up here and it will be delivered to your inbox every Tuesday!

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SOS for Shiny Object Syndrome

September 2, 2014

This is one of my favorite times of year – I can’t seem to kick the feeling of “Back to School” excitement that I’ve had since I was a little kid. Griffin decided to skip the 4th grade this year, and we’re all super excited to see how the 5th grade unfolds for him! Although […]

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How Tiny Tweaks Can Transform Your Life

August 26, 2014

The photo to the right was taken during a shoot for the Aspire Magazine cover in December. (Of course, I can’t use it for the cover because my eyes are closed, but I love that it shows my genuine delight in that moment. And I love that I can share it with you!) If you […]

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What Robin Williams’ death can teach us about helplessness and hope

August 19, 2014

That’s Griffin in front of his lemonade stand last weekend. When we were getting ready, I asked him how much he planned to charge for a glass. He said 50 cents. I said he could do that OR he could offer the lemonade for free and have a jar for tips. He was a little […]

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When should you give up on your dreams?

August 12, 2014

Well, I still haven’t yet managed to pull together all the photos from my Epic European Adventure with Griffin to share with you. But I can share a few more favorite pics from our trip – this time from the top of the Eiffel Tower. As you know, we spent about 8 hours on the […]

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Simple Steps to Maximize Your Mindset (90% of success is based on this!)

August 5, 2014

Life has been so full with getting back to my life and work that I haven’t yet managed to pull together all the photos from my Epic European Adventure with Griffin. I’ll share more once I do, but for now you can get a peek at Panthera (the boat – in the background) in the […]

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The best personal development advice is in a business book

July 29, 2014

I just got back from my epic European Adventure with Griffin! Of all the wonderful photos I have from the trip, I’m particularly delighted to share this one of Griffin and my former client and current cher amie, Nadine. When I found out that we were going to have a 9-hour layover in Paris before […]

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Go Ahead: Judge Your Neighbor!

July 22, 2014

Yes, life would be so much easier and SO much better if everyone would simply conform to my perfect way of doing things. Fortunately, I’ve learned to care more about my happiness than being right, and that’s where Byron Katie’s The Work has been SO helpful. By doing The Work, I stopped being frustrated with my […]

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Does slow and steady REALLY win the race?

July 15, 2014

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.” ~ Robert Louis Stevenson” As you may know, I completed my 5th marathon in March. But what you may not know is what got me into running marathons in the first place. When I was in my early 30’s I […]

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