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From Broken to Badass Step 5 - Rise

Welcome to step 5, the final step in the From Broken to BADASS series... RISE! This is the step we’ve been working toward all month!

(If you missed any of the first 4 steps, you can use the links below.)

We’ve honored ourselves by learning to rest when we need to (and NOT feeling guilty for it!), we’ve refocused on what matters most to us (our WHY), we’ve worked to release people, habits and commitments that drain us. We’ve built ourselves up with a focus on the strong foundation we learned to nurture in step 1, all for this one moment…

It’s our time to reclaim our TRUE power. It’s our time to RISE!

To kick off our 5th step, I want to share a powerful excerpt from my favorite quote from Marianne Williamson:

“Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do... And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.”

You see, that’s the beauty of this whole process- Yes, we’re building ourselves up, but in doing so, we are also lighting up the lives of everyone around us, inspiring them and giving them permission to rise too!

This process of self-care and empowerment isn’t selfish. Nothing we do exists in isolation. While working to make ourselves happy, we are simultaneously allowing others to do the same.

There is no downside to this process. Everyone wins!

And now... it's time to RISE!

I would say “The first step in RISING is…" except that we’ve already taken the first step. And the second, third and fourth!

Building the foundation is THE number 1 most important part of our comeback. The rest is simply implementing the gifts that are already inside us, and building from there!

So let’s go back to our WHY (which we identified in step 2) our through line for all our choices, actions and goals. Knowing what matters most to you, what is the NUMBER 1 GOAL you want to set for yourself for the immediate future?

This could be a personal goal, like exercising more or spending more time with your family (and less time at work), or finishing a project you started but never completed. It could be a career goal, such as finding a way to transition into work that fills your soul. It could be as cut and dried as giving up sugar, or as complex as reimagining your entire career.

The size of the goal isn’t what matters.

Understanding how that goal supports your WHY, and allowing that to guide your actions as you RISE is what matters.

That’s where we’ve gotten off track in the past. When we set goals that we think we “should” set, based on the expectations of others, or what we think we “should” do based on some outside idea of what “successful” people do… that’s when we find ourselves empty, exhausted and burned out.

We can’t blame ourselves for those choices in the past. We were simply doing what we thought we “should” do. But to quote Maya Angelou,

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better do better.”

And now we know better.

Everything we’ve experienced - the successes, mistakes, heartbreaks and victories - have taught us valuable lessons, and led us to this very moment. The moment when we get to choose:

Will we revert back to our habitual patterns, or will we take what matters most to us into our hands and RISE?

I think I know your answer, so let’s do it!

Take out your notebook and write your number 1 goal at the top of a fresh page. You know what this goal is because it came into your mind when you were reading that section a few paragraphs back. It was the first thing that popped into your head. Write it down now.

Don’t worry if you have multiple goals in the various areas of your life; this same approach can be repeated for all of them! Just start with that first goal that came to mind, and see it through to the end.

Focusing on one goal at a time is critical, otherwise we find ourselves overwhelmed and paralyzed. And that’s when we fall backwards. Because it feels easier to just go back to the way things have always been than to try to tackle an enormous goal all at once.

That’s not to say our goals shouldn’t scare us. If your goal scares you a little, that’s perfect! That fear means your heart is coming alive. That fear means this matters to you! That fear means you’re pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone, and THAT is where growth happens!

But while fear can be invigorating, overwhelm can paralyze.

So no matter how many goals and ideas are swirling around in your mind, just choose one for now, and set the rest aside.

Beneath where you wrote your number one goal, list the gifts that make you uniquely qualified for this. If you struggle with this step (because being proud of our gifts is tough for so many of us) look back at the list of gifts you came up with in Step 4. The gifts you discovered within yourself through the hardships and the gifts that you’ve always been aware of, even if ashamed to be proud of.

Next to each of these gifts, note how these gifts are useful as you work toward this one primary goal. Perhaps your gift is that you are good at communicating, and your goal is to start a blog. Clearly, your gift of communication is a HUGE asset in the pursuit of your goal.

Or maybe you finally acknowledged that you are really good at organizing and planning, and your goal is to transform your nutrition. Your gifts are perfectly suited to researching and learning about nutrition, organizing your kitchen and meal planning!

Whatever your goal, see how the gifts you already have support it. Most people find that their goals and their gifts are intimately related, they just never realized it. IF the goal is true to your WHY. If the goal is still based on external “shoulds,” the gifts will feel less compatible and the goal will feel more like a burden.

This exercise of realizing how your gifts support your goal is incredibly empowering, but you will also likely become keenly aware that there are a number of skills you don’t yet have, but need, in order to tackle your goal.

That’s where the real fun begins as we rise!

Most of us have been out of school for a few years (er… decades) so learning can feel daunting. But when your learning is fueled by passion to reach a goal inspired by your genuine WHY, it takes on an excitement that will make it feel manageable.

For me, when I decided to start my blog, I had to learn how to create a WordPress website. For most people, this might not seem scary. For the least tech-savvy girl on the planet, it was terrifying! But the moment I knew WHY I wanted it, it became (almost) effortless! The research, the YouTube tutorials, the courses, the 16 hour days… Yes, it was challenging, but it took on a life and energy of its own, fueled by genuine passion.

What do you need to learn in order to tackle your goal?

You have a list of your gifts, now make a list of the things you don’t know YET. The skills you need to hone, the information you need to gather. Are there people you know who have the skills you need? Could you ask them for help? YouTube is a HUGE resource too. List it all out here. Don’t worry about overwhelm as you look at the list, just make the list, one thing at a time.

The short version is this:

Number each of the items in order of priority. What do you need to learn first? Many of the skills will build on each other, so just try your best to rank them in order.

Now that they’re ranked, create a timeline for each item.

HERE’S THE KEY - Work on one at a time!

Remember what I said earlier about goal paralysis? The same is true for the steps within each goal. One step at a time.

I find a planner useful for this. A good old-fashioned paper planner. I list one priority toward my goal for each day. Just one. Otherwise I look at the list of all I need to learn and I want to crawl back into bed!

For instance, when I was building my website, if I had on one list: Secure domain name, decide on hosting, research SSL certificates, master SEO, research email platforms, choose a photo editing program, learn which plugins are best, learn what the heck plugins even are!...

You see my point, right?

So in my case, day 1 would say simply: Secure domain name. That would be my only learning priority for the day, and I would achieve it and feel fulfilled. (Some learning priorities take multiple days or even weeks, so adjust as necessary.)

If I was feeling really jazzed that day and knocked the domain name out with time and energy to spare, THEN (and only then) I could turn to the next day and start to work on deciding on hosting. But ONLY if I wanted to.

The key in working toward our goals when we have a lot to learn is MOMENTUM.

We build momentum with small successes, not by bogging ourselves down by thinking of how far we have yet to go.

Remember, you can successfully drive all the way across the country in the dark with your headlights only illuminating the twenty yards in front of you at a time. Focus on one step at a time.

For now (because this has already gotten way too long!), I want to share one last exercise with you. This exercise is perhaps the single most powerful exercise for me in staying the course when I’m working toward a huge goal or life change.

Take out your notebook again. Write today’s date FIVE YEARS FROM NOW and your age on that day at the top of the page.

Now, writing in the present tense, describe your life in detail, five years from today, if you DON’T take on this goal. What will you look like? What will your days be like? Who will you be surrounded by? How will you spend your time? How will you feel? Every little detail that comes to mind.

Now, do that same exercise, but this time, describe your life five years from today HAVING ACHIEVED YOUR GOAL. All the same details as before, but this time you’ve reached your goal (and perhaps are even working on the next one!) Allow yourself to FEEL the feelings of this new existence. How do you FEEL having reached your goal? What does your life look like?

To take this a step further, complete this exercise going out 10 years (or more!)

This is a phenomenal exercise to come back to and re-read if you ever feel your momentum wane or the doubts creep in.

Remember, we all have moments (or days or weeks) of doubt.

The key is that we keep coming back to our WHY and we keep showing up.

Armed with our WHY, the sky truly is the limit.

I want this so much for you! Everything you’ve been through has uniquely prepared you for this moment.

You’ve learned that it’s not only OK to nurture yourself, it’s NECESSARY. You’ve re-discovered your WHY, and you’ve purged the people, habits and things that don’t support it. You’ve begun the process of rebuilding your strength and now you’ve set a goal based on YOUR truth...

You’re SO ready to RISE.

I am so grateful that you’ve allowed me to be a part of this life-changing transition. I can’t wait to see you bring your incredible gifts into the world!

Here’s to our epic comeback. We’ve got this, my friend. We’ve SO got this.


Xx Jen

And as always, if you know someone who could benefit from this process, please forward this to her. Thank you!

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