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Superman’s secrets—that you can use, too

wds2013-0413-IMG_6731It’s been a week since the 3rd annual World Domination Summit and I’ve still got warm fuzzies and inspiration keeping me company—like shots of wheatgrass shooting me toward Universal Goodness, Zing!

Of the gazillion sparks that happened over the weekend, Darren Rowse’s talk stoked my fire big time. Darren is founder of the uber-successful ProBlogger as well as Digital Photography School.

His overarching topic was on dreams and the takeaways were wonderfully fresh and very natural professional-like—practical + inner-guided.

You’ve probably wondered, as I have many-a-time: How do you know what to work on? Which projects to pursue? When to course correct? Yah, baby. His talk addressed all that and more.

Read on for three ways to navigate and course correct by tapping into the part of you that knows best

Note: Darren’s talk provoked this post, and is not, by any means, responsible for all the ideas in it. I’m mostly referring to #2 below in which his ideas and my musings/extrapolations go all over the place. Apologies for tangling you up in this wild weave, Mr. Rowse.

1. Daily Review
Darren does an end of day review which he says was influenced by The Daily Examen, coming from Ignatian Spirituality. I looked that up at an Ignatian Spirituality Website which suggests that this daily practice “is a technique of prayerful reflection on the events of the day in order to detect God’s presence and discern his direction for us.”

I’m not a religious type but I’m happy to take good ideas regardless of where they come from. Pausing to reflect on the day is straight up good practice—adding the component of identifying what was Good (so you can do more) and Not-Good (so you can do less) is a no-brainer.

Some of the questions Darren asks at the end of his day:

  • What gave me energy today?
  • What took my energy today?
  • Who was I today and do I like that person?
  • What problems did I solve?

wds2013-0440-IMG_6860I might not have gotten these strictly verbatim (apologies, Darren!) but that shouldn’t get in the way of seeing their value.

Note on application: I’ve tried this at the very end of the day, I.e. While I’m laying in bed, and honestly, I couldn’t make it past the first question (snore). I recommend doing it while in a seated position =)

One of our intentions as natural professionals is to be ever more nuanced in sensing what supports and drains us. Observing what gave and took our energy is another way to look at this. (More on the importance of “What gives me energy” in the next point.)

Let’s wrap up this first point by combining it with the Gratitude practice. Thus the final question would be: “What am I grateful for today?” After the rest of the questions, you’ll likely answer this one quickly.

So why add it? Because our lives are constantly pulling us into our head. Every opportunity, reminder, and encouragement to come back into the heart space is a Gift.

2. What gave me energy today?
This question in his daily review deserves its own point, if not a full book. Darren uses this awareness of what gives him energy as a guide to know what to pursue more of in his life (and, I’d presume, what to disengage from).

Replacing the Passion question

What I love about this question is that it can take the place of “What am I passionate about?” A question that comes with a whole host of issues.

  1. There’s pressure to know what you’re passionate about.
  2. Knowing what you’re passionate about assumes that you know what passion feels like. (Since we use the word “passion” in the sex department, am I supposed to feel about a project they way I feel about my dude after a romantic dinner at our fave sushi restaurant?)
  3. Maybe you don’t know what you’re passionate about, so what do you work on?
  4. Maybe you have a passion about some idea or concept and have no idea how to turn that into activities, services or products.

[Btw: This one killed me in my 20’s. I was passionate about making the world a better place, but had no idea what that might look like. Any time I started in a direction, the mundane didn’t feel anything like the passion I felt when thinking about it so I’d nix the idea. It was truly paralyzing at the time because I didn’t have any other tools to navigate with.]

wds2013-0709-IMG_8523*Instead*… taking note of what gives you energy is much more nuanced and the best part is that it’s applicable on a daily basis.

It’s not as big and sexy as “My Passion!”—which means that it’s a lot less charged and thus less likely to pile on the pressure and set up expectations. Phew!

And the beauty of it is, you don’t even have to know what your Passion (capital P) is! In fact, reviewing what gives you energy on a day to day basis may well guide you to understanding what your passion is.

Business strategizing just got easier.

Observing your energy supports and drains makes decisions more objective. Instead of deciding to use Facebook more than Twitter for building relationships because that’s what someone you admire is doing, choose it because you have more fun (get energy) with it.

You may notice that something that used to give you energy, now feels like a drag. This is important stuff to listen to! Just because you used to love providing X service doesn’t mean that you should do it forever.

Ultimately, your best path is one that is customized and unique to you. Learning what this path looks like may be a slow and seemingly laborious process (as it was for me), but hey, no one could ever promise that the Hero’s Journey would be a piece of cake. Listening inward certainly makes it a lot easier!!

Observe what gives you energy and do more of that. Observe what takes your energy and do less of that.

3. Video: Choosing small over feeling overwhelmed
Dreams can be Big.
Really big.
Too big?

Coming to you from the World Domination Summit, this ~6min video talks about slipping out from under a shadow cast by a Dream that feels Too Big.

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