Do you need a wake-up call? Please understand, I’m not suggesting that you might need a wake-up call because your life is awful and you hadn’t noticed it.  If your life was awful, chances are, you would have noticed it – although you might not know what to do about it. It’s the grey areas we’re talking about; the Things-Aren’t-Perfect-But-I’ve-Known-Worse-and-They’re-Liveable areas.  One phrase that I really love is this: “Just because you can, it doesn’t mean you should.” Just because you can put up with a degree of discomfort and dissatisfaction in your life that doesn’t mean you should. I’m not talking about the mid-life crisis thing where somebody, all of a sudden turns round and says: “To hell with you.  I’m off looking for my own personal gratification.” What I’m talking about is something that came up in one of my very first experiences of coaching: tolerations.  Tolerations, in coach-speak, are the things you put up with that you don’t like and feel subtly diminished by. Most lives are filled with a mass of tolerations: we tolerate behaviour from various people that makes us feel worth less.  We tolerate a lack of respect in our lives.  We tolerate a lack of consideration.  We tolerate working conditions that leave us feeling diminished.  We tolerate being less than we can be.  We tolerate short-changing ourselves and letting other people short-change us. Why do we do that? Because we feed ourselves a line about not being ready yet, or not being quite good enough, or having to serve an even longer apprenticeship – even if that ‘apprenticeship’ that we’re serving has NOTHING to do with our perceived vocation, or mission. Most people are surprisingly good at living with a moderate to high level of frustration and dissatisfaction. We cling, like barnacles, to our uncomfortable Comfort Zone. Chances are, we never chose that Comfort Zone for ourselves: someone else parked us there. And there we remain… Waiting for a wake-up call that’s loud enough and long enough to focus our attention. But here’s the thing: wake-up calls come in a variety of forms.  Some are like the proverbial slap in the face, others are barely a pin-prick. It’s not about the force of the wake-up call. It’s about your readiness to hear and respond to it. There are always wake-up calls all around.  But you do have to listen to them. And you have to believe in your power to make your dreams a reality. What special gifts do you need to make those dreams a reality? None, actually. Unless you call persistence, and consistency gifts. Whether you decide they are or aren’t gifts, is your call. Besides, it doesn’t really matter.  You already show consistency and persistence.  We all do. The question is, are you using that consistency and persistence to do the things that really serve you – or the things that really serve other people?  At your expense. Only asking! Wakey, wakey!

lightbulb moment

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