#ShowingUp with Anese Cavanaugh

You’ve Got This… But You Have to Set Yourself Up Right For It. Here’s How.

I talk with people everyday who are up against something big — it maybe totally exciting, totally daunting, or all of the above. They maybe stepping into a new role, taking on a new venture, working through relationship stuff, looking to call in a relationship, working on their health, making more money, writing a book, launching their product, building their brand, whatever, you name it - there’s stuff. Big stuff. Exciting stuff. Daunting stuff.

I talk with people everyday who are up against something big — it may be totally exciting, totally daunting, or all of the above. They may be stepping into a new role, taking on a new venture, working through relationship stuff, looking to call in a relationship, working on their health, making more money, writing a book, launching their product, building their brand, whatever, you name it -- there’s stuff. Big stuff. Exciting stuff. Daunting stuff.

It usually boils down to three things:

  • They want to make something happen (achievement, power, legacy)
  • They want to feel better (peace, joy, fulfillment)
  • They want others to feel better with and around them (influence, credibility, connection)

I’m of the mind that we can make anything happen that we truly want, IF we’ll truly go after it, if it’s coming from a place of purpose and true desire (vs. ego and or a “should”/someone else’s agenda for us), and if we set ourselves up well for it.

This last one is low hanging fruit, but it’s the one that often gets de-prioritized when it comes down to it.

Why? There are 5 core reasons I see daily:

  • busy-ness
  • loss of focus/forgetting
  • low self-belief
  • lack of discipline
  • lack of intention, energy, and presence

So… Yes… You’ve got this… BUT you do have to set yourself up right for it.

This means you’ve got to claim it. And then you have to make it a priority. You have to make the time. You gotta do the work.

I met a woman at a party recently who’d been unemployed for over 8 months and was really struggling with it. I felt for her, she was exhausted, frustrated, and deflated, and my experience of her was a low and heavy energetic presence. Not the best state to be looking for a job from.

This woman was very committed to her story of not being able to get a job. What was even more powerful was her story around why she wasn’t achieving her goals — and believing that none of those reasons were “her fault”. She felt powerless. Her story had become more powerful than her.

Nobody’s negative story is more powerful than them. Unless they let it be.

Every question I asked and every place I pointed her to look, that could have helped her reset and take her power back, she shot down with an excuse of why that would not work for her. The more we spoke, the more committed she became to holding her ground, and the more contracted the energy of the conversation became.

I suggested some resources, wished her sincere well, and went back to my business.

But this woman really got me thinking and feeling into this conversation at a deeper level.

This maybe somewhat of an extreme story - it sucks to not have a job. And it brings up some common things that show up when we’re “up against it”. So let’s dig in.

In this case, she was so “in it” that she couldn’t see where to start to shift her perspective, or get herself into a better position. But in this case,  she also needed more time to stay there. How do I know this? Because she was there. And because she decided to stay there. (This decision in itself, by the way, has power. And that is a whole other article coming soon.)

A couple of key points here worth mentioning: This woman was breathing, had a roof over her head, a partner who thought she was the bomb diggity, a network for friends and colleagues, and some nice skills to lean into that would make her more marketable in the field.

Awesome.

But she was not focused there - or anywhere near there — at all. She was focused on her story. The more she believed how bad it was, the more she found evidence that it was an impossible situation. The more she exuded that energy. The more she created what she didn’t want. Ever been there? I have.

The story had become the lens she viewed the world through and where she lived from. In the process she had, in her own words, “given up”. She’d also gained 20 pounds and stopped making her self-care a priority, which had just made her more mad, more contracted, and less confident.

She was the common denominator in all her woes and story. And this, while it often pisses people off, is also incredibly liberating. Why? Because if you are at the center of the problem, you are the one with the power to change it. You control you. Change your view, change your life. You get to create the shift.

For her to shift out of this, would take a breath, a decision, and faith.

My belief? She’s got this, but she’s gotta get in there and Show Up for herself. She’s got to set herself up well.

Period.

When she’s ready. And that is her choice too. This is the beauty.

This idea can apply to anything.

One of my team members was in Hurricane Irma, she and her partner evacuated. While it was hard and scary, she “got this”; she honored that it sucked, let herself have her emotion, took care of herself, and then took actions to set themselves up — even doing the littlest things possible — to create more success coming out of it.

My daughter has a big test coming up and she’s nervous about it. No problem, she’s got this, but she’s going to have to do the work, study hard, give up FaceTime with the buds, get more sleep.

A client is working towards the partner track in her firm. She’s got this, but she has to set herself up. Eat well for energy management, have difficult feedback conversations with her staff, do extra leadership and presence work to support her skills and credibility, and yes, likely even more — it will take time, energy, grit, and sometimes sucky work — but she’s got this.

I personally, right now as we speak, am working on fulfilling our 2021 vision for the IEP work in the world. It’s daunting. It requires a lot of infrastructure and skills that I’m not the best at. It will require a new level of leadership from me and me walking my talk even more so. I’m on my edge everyday. And somedays I just want to watch a movie or sell shoes. But… I’ve got this. It will take time, energy, grit, yes, sometimes sucky work, and a heck of a lot of support. I’ll have to ask for support, another edge… but the vision is that important, and so is my feeling of clarity and purpose, so I’ll do it. See how this goes?

We’ve got this.

Below are 25 ways to set yourself up for success so that you can truly embody “I’ve got this”. They’re all in your control. They’re all for your tossing, tweaking, or taking pleasure. The thing is, me telling you these, or adding 100 more, will do nothing if you don’t decide to get in there and make it so. Ready?

  1. Story time: Check yourself before you wreck yourself. What’s your story? Don’t let it design you. (Note: If you are going to let it design you, at least make it a great story that serves.)
  2. Be grateful. Whatever just happened — no matter how bad — what do you have to be grateful for? You’re breathing, and you’re reading this, let’s start there.
  3. Connect with humans. You are not alone. Even if you think you are. You aren’t. Connect. Even if that is with the barista at the coffee shop this morning.
  4. Craft your vision. What do you want this to look like? What do you want instead of what you have? What’s it look like, feel like, taste like, etc? A vision is an intention of the greatest kind.
  5. Set your intentions. Single. Day. Every single meeting. Every interaction. Even for how you want to BE with yourself. Set your intentions.
  6. Claim your vision and desire. If you don’t claim it, no one will claim it for you. Get in there. Own it.
  7. Do the work. You have to get in there and go for what you want. If you want it -- do it.
  8. Work on your leadership prowess. If your leadership is not effective, it ain’t gonna happen. So determine whatever skills you need to amplify in order to make that thing happen, and up-level.
  9. Work your presence. If your presence sucks and exhausts people or, at best, just doesn’t make them feel good or inspire, I don’t care how good your skills or your leadership prowess is, or how many MBAs you have, you won’t get to what’s possible.
  10. Get feedback. Check in with people you trust on your leadership, your presence, and what you need to do to make this happen.
  11. Get advisors. Listen to them. (AND trust yourself in the listening. This is an art.)
  12. Set your day up clean. Stop doing stuff in the morning that distracts you and takes you off path and into everyone else’s agenda. (Email, social media, etc…)
  13. Protect your energy. Period.
  14. Set timelines and deadlines and clear accountabilities. Communicate and honor them.
  15. Eat well. Food is fuel. It’s medicine. You are what you eat. No kidding.
  16. Sleep well. Make it a priority. Get your zzzzz’s.
  17. Stop making excuses. Just stop. You are author of your life and how you choose to Show Up. Yes, things happen. We can still choose how we want to be with them.
  18. Move your body. Whatever way feels right for you, hustle up.
  19. Do nothing. Do something. Do whatever meditation means to you. But do it.
  20. Work your environment so that it works for you. Right now, I’ll bet you know at least 5 things that are bringing you down and depleting your energy in your environment, fix them.
  21. Make time for people you love. It’s all about the love. We both know it.
  22. Get off the couch. You don’t get to complain about time and “busy-ness” when you watch a lot of TV (or whatever you do on your couch).
  23. Ask for help. For real. Be specific about the help you want and need. And then receive.
  24. Contribute to others. Especially when you think you can’t possibly. Give big.
  25. Live your life. Right here. Right now. Breathe.

There, that’s 25… I could go on forever.

Fieldwork for you if you so choose to make this real TODAY:

Make your own action plan for something you want to shift or change in your life.

  1. Write it down.
  2. Make sure it’s yours and there’s a reason for it (purpose and desire driven vs. ego and “should" driven).
  3. Claim it.
  4. Identify 5 things on this list that are the most important for you to get rolling. (Feel free to modify or change completely for yourself as they serve.)
  5. Do them. Again. And again. And again.

Get in there.

And then of course, celebrate and do it all over again.

You CAN have what you want. You DO have to do the work. Nobody is going to do it FOR you. Your Intentions, Energy, and Presence (IEP) are secret sauce to making it all so.

Your IEP is key.

So if you want it. Go after it. Really.

Only 3% of you who read this will likely do anything sticky with it. Ironically those 3% are the ones who will create the shifts they want.

Where are you at? Please be in the 3%. Or better yet…

Let’s bring that number up together shall we?

Love to you…

Get in there.

Let’s Show Up together.

XO

If you want to dig into your own IEP and playing with the ideas offered in this post, join me in October, 24 and 25, for our last IEP Live! Leadership & Influence Intensive of the year. More info right here.

Let’s go…

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