This is KEY to Crafting the Life You Want

craft the life you want

Inside: If you truly want something you must show up and do the work. Small step by step. This is key to crafting the life you want.

Do the work.

Keep trying.

Get your hands dirty.

Do all or something.

Take imperfect action.

Build a growth mindset.

Ask for help if you need it.

Learn to sit with discomfort.

Take two steps forward, one step back.

Do it scared and aware there is much you don’t know.

Pick yourself up should you fall.

Stay out of comparison.

But do the work.

There are no magic pills, no collect $200 and advance to go, no bypassing the fact that if we say we want something – a good relationship with our kids, a thriving soul-centered business, a healthy body, a decluttered home – we must show up and do the work.

This is the key to crafting the life you want.

Do the work.

How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives -Annie Dillard

 

Not everything is for this season – and this truth, I believe, is critical to remember especially for those of us who desire slower, simpler lives.

Yet crafting the life you want, whatever the season, requires work. Getting clear on who and how we want to be, how we choose to spend our time, talents, and resources, requires some work. Building anything of value requires deliberate action and likely some stress. Moving against status quo or staying focused on your top values and priorities, involves effort.

And this day matters. All my todays add up to my tomorrow. It’s basic math.

Talking about your vision is not the same as doing the work. Dreaming and filling in goal worksheets (as much I adore them), or listening to podcasts – delightful and often useful but not the same as actually getting your hands messy.

There is no need for perfection and you don’t have to race. You don’t need to impress anyone else or make them approve. This is about you and what you want.

We build our lives brick by brick, so let’s build intentionally.

Your personality comes into play as you build the life you want

 

As a master procrastinator with a mean inner critic, I know this to be true. Personality comes into play.

Some of us are wired to be more cautious, hard on ourselves, to see all the flaws and give up before we start just in case we fail or are rejected.

I’ve learned to just show up.

I’ve taught myself to offer myself heaps of compassion, take days off as needed to climb under the covers, but to not settle for staying permanently stuck.

I’ve learned that I am not a failure because I struggle and I don’t have to look like or do life like anyone else. I don’t have to be great at anything. I just have to carve my own path. And I’ve learned that I am stronger and more resilient that I used to believe. I learned this by taking one faltering, wobbly, step after another.

I am doing the work.

We all meet with resistance of one kind or another. We have a tendency to self-sabotage.

You may struggle with people-pleasing or trying to look good for others or trying to do all the things. Your best friend may be a go-getter: she’s brave and audacious but also impetuous and scattered. Some of us live with anxiety and crash and burn if we don’t guard our mental and physical health carefully. A friend of mine continually doubts her worth and has a hard time recognizing her gifting despite past accomplishments.

Whatever your personality, you are offered the same choice as I am to show up, get honest about who you are and the reality of your circumstances, about all your fears and insecurities and what you want out of life, and do the work to craft the life you want.

You can go slow, you can fall off course, you can be messy and imperfect and afraid.

You can make mistakes, or do a bad job, change your mind, and walk through seasons that are so hard and dark you aren’t sure you’ll ever make it through.

Keep showing up. One small step and then another.

Everything desirable involves a measure of stress

 

If you want to be a writer, sit down in the chair and write. Write a bunch of shitty first drafts as Anne Lamott calls them. Accept rejection. Spend more time creating than watching what others are up to. Be you. Stop comparing your beginning to someone else’s middle.

If you want a more connected relationship with your spouse, make a date and get out talking. Remember that not every argument means divorce. Offer an affirming word, make a bid for connection. Laugh together, practice vulnerability, forgive.

If you want to build a happy family, bake blueberry muffins. Listen when your teen keeps you up too late sharing his heart. Read that story book again and again. Care about what your kids are excited about. Drive her to piano lessons. Practice loving when it doesn’t feel easy.

If you hate the anxiety of living in debt, craft your budget and follow it when you head to the store. Make mistakes but don’t let them become a pattern. Find friends who share your values. Initiate money dates with your partner. Learn ways to meet your emotional needs that don’t involve shopping.

If you want to make friends, put pants on and get out to a local community event. Be friendly. Offer that which you need. Ask good questions and listen well. Be real instead of playing the chameleon; you want people to like the real you. Be patient; growing friendships takes time.

If you want to feel healthier, make one meal today that supports your health. Make a menu plan and shop with a list. Borrow inspiring cookbooks. Keep it simple. Eat more color. Get rid of the foods in the house that call you to bingeing. Focus on adding in healthy habits vs creating a sense of restriction.

Whatever it is that you most desire, do the work.

Ditch the all or nothing lie that holds you back and keeps you stuck.

It doesn’t mean it’s easy. It means it’s worthwhile. It may get easier in time.

Practice. Work at your craft or pick away at your dreams.

When you grow tired, learn to rest and not quit.

Break down your goal into bite-size steps.

When it feels really hard, just breathe.

Take the longer view.

I don’t have a perfect life or body or marriage or business and I don’t need perfect. What I need and want is to live on purpose. I see my life as work of art and weave it together, thread by thread, intentionally. Often afraid.

I’m simply doing the messy work. This is KEY.

I’m cheering you onward as you craft the life you want,

Krista xo

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16 comments on “This is KEY to Crafting the Life You Want

  1. I love your clarity of thought and the ease with which you articulate your thoughts. I am an Happiness Coach & Author, based in India and could easily connect with the work you do and this resonates with me very well. Best wishes to you and may you continue to spread joy and happiness

  2. Love this post! Showing up to do the work of my life, the things I know I feel called to do and those things that just must be done, has been a principle that has carried me through a particularly difficult season of life. I’ve exited that season, hallelujah, but I still apply that same methodology. Keep showing up.

    I started applying this idea in a place where I wasn’t able to measure my success by any other measure. But consistently showing up (in a way that is sustainable for me, which you talk so much about) has gotten me places that I once only dreamed of arriving at. I’m sold on showing up and doing the work (in a sustainable way, unique to your personality and personal values).

    It’s become one of my own mantras. It’s like a compass point, a “north star”. There is so much in the productivity realm that just makes me gag and say “not for me!” (And unlike you, I can’t read many of those types of books. Just ugh.) But showing up, consistently, in my relationships, in my writing, in my work, in my homeschooling, in my community has made things happen in my life without all the stressful-for-me achievement orientated message of our culture, or productivity hacks or whatever else is the new thing.

    Also, thanks for reminding us that this doesn’t come without stress and difficulty. That’s just life.

    • Thank Renée – what a happy thing to receive this morning (your comment, that is). Even words like “achievement” or “success” repel me unless I redefine them for myself. I am very uninterested in measuring up or keeping up. I am SO COMPELLED to work through my own fears and insecurities, to practice loving myself well, and to show up fully to this imperfect and beautiful life of mine. xo

  3. Thank you Krista! So simple and so powerful! Before I read this, I had never heard of you. Someone posted this on FB and when I read it, it was as if I was struck by lightning. The force of your words, “Do the work”, has galvanised me into pursuing my dream, even if it takes forever. I will do as much of the work as I can, when I can, until the work is done.
    Thank you!

  4. Great article! I also connected to “Don’t compare someone else’s middle to your beginning.” Thanks for the push that I needed!

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