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Your life goals are achievable, just fill your own bucket!

Think about your life goals…

Are you waiting for your bird feeder to be filled?

The other day while I was topping up the birdseed in my backyard feeders…

I left to fill two feeders, and when I came back, a chipmunk was at the top of the pail.

Its cheeks were swollen, and it started to run around inside the pail. Then, finally, it jumped out and ran away.

I got some more seed and went to fill the other feeders. When I came back, there was a chipmunk in the pail again.

I’m not good enough to know if it was the same one – we didn’t introduce ourselves and swap business cards – but I’m willing to bet it was the same scavenger following its instincts to hoard food.

You repeat your patterns…and it gets in the way of achieving your life goals

I got wondering what would happen with ‘Chippy’ – yes, I named it – and the seeds if I didn’t keep filling my bucket?

I imagined that Chippy was so happy to find so much food, it no longer felt the need to run around searching for food, packing its cheeks so it could rest.

However, after a period of enjoying all the different seeds, Chippy found the bottom. But the pail was so deep Chippy would be trapped and wouldn’t be able to get out of it.

This chipmunk would be in a predicament where someone would have to provide more seeds in the pail for it to survive.

Though it had mixed seeds when Chippy started, being trapped at the base of the pail meant its choice was narrowed. Whatever was put in the pail is what the choice would be.

I got thinking about how simple it is for us to become like Chippy when we get thinking about…

  • thriving
  • mental health
  • purposeful living
  • finding success
  • being a leader who inspires change

Are we taking shortcuts, drifting, giving up our choices and freedoms?

Your life choices determine your success

That chipmunk kept coming to the bucket because it was operating on the assumption that I’d refill it with a variety of seeds. It’s a survival mechanism…

Are you waiting for someone to fill your bucket?

Perhaps you’re…

1. Taking short-cuts to success

Trust me on this one; short-term enjoyment can lead to long-term traps. Sure, you can “have it all now” with no payments, no interest, no investment…

Eventually, you’ll have to reckon with the detour that required an investment in education and the pursuit of self-reliance.

2. Drifting

You’ve achieved a certain level of success, and now you’re just going with the flow. You’re getting comfortable.

Whether it’s thriving or resilience, you’ve drifted so far, of course, from your life goals the path back is against the current. How do you conquer it?

3. Giving up on your choices and freedoms

Whether it’s your abilities, life lessons, nature, or skills, these strengths can be diminished after a little while. You begin to feel like you’ve lost your power to choose…do you want to regain it?

4. Struggling with your values

Freedom, based on credibility, authenticity, and integrity takes years. It takes discipline, commitment, and an honest effort to grow.

But it can be lost in seconds…or with an accumulation of small decisions made over time that add up to losing yourself.

All values are costly in the short term

All values are costly in the short term, but they reap the rewards in the long term.

If something comes easy, was it really worth the cost or effort? Probably not.

So here is my challenge for you…

As you lean into the remainder of the summer – the rest of your life, really – and prepare for September, here are some questions and ideas for you to help clarify your desired outcome.

  • What will you define as success?
  • What areas would you focus on and strengthen as you head into the next season? Think of health as more than not being ill. Think bigger, think…
    • physical
    • relational
    • spiritual
    • psychological
    • emotional
    • moral
  • Who will you ask to join you, so drifting doesn’t happen?
    • Why would you ask them? What is it about them?
  • What about doing it your way? Who will coach you to clarify your wiring? That means your…
    • nature
    • abilities
    • life lessons

You’re in the driver’s seat…take the wheel!

Don’t wait for January to reset your odometer. Take the time now to reset and regroup. If you’re ready to fill your own bucket, contact me.

We can have a conversation about the issues holding you back…and the strengths you have that can propel you forward.

Enjoyed this article? Here are three more to help you:

Finishing Well Requires Self-Examination And A Will To Matter
Crisis Intervention Is An Opportunity, Not A Limitation or Liability
Crisis Management Is An Opportunity To Build Your Culture (Part 2)