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Belonging Makes You Unstoppable

Belonging Makes You Unstoppable

By Lynn Erasmus

With the constant change, disruptions and outside chaos going on, we are experiencing a major disconnection with our integrity.

Integrity at its most base meaning is the bond we have with ourselves, being true to our word and doing what is right, no matter how hard it seems to be. It means belonging to yourself.

Some of us might feel like we have lost our sense of integrity, values, and purpose in life, mostly due to the unrealistic or unmet expectations others and ourselves have been placing on us. This is a result of our busyness at work, constant scrolling on social media and pleasing our family and friends, before our own needs. Mental health, depression, burnout, and suicide are at an all-time high, worldwide, because it is deemed, “selfish” to put our own needs first. An average of 5500 suicides each year in the UK, this is a devastating number that can be prevented.

We can do this by re-writing the stories we tell ourselves and start creating an inner world, where we can belong to ourselves, regardless of the chaos around us. It all started with an idea, that became a word, that was spoken or written and thus become a story. So, we need to think up a new idea by asking the who, what, where, why, when, and how to get clarity, confidence, and commitment to live a happy life with integrity and joy.

How we can start fixing this is to get clear about the following:

  1. Who we are (or want to become).

(“Who am I,” is one of the most searched-for questions on Google – Google it.) What are our values, beliefs, and purpose in life? We have 4 areas in our lives that we value:

  • Relationships/intimacy.
  • Work/education.
  • Spiritual or personal development &
  • Pleasure/playtime.

Some of us value one or two in equal measures, some are balanced enough to value all 4 in equal measures.

  1. Where would we like to see ourselves in 5 years’ time and is this in alignment with our rear-view mirror looking back as we lie on our deathbeds?

“I wish I pursued my dreams and aspirations, and not the life others expected of me,” was the most common regret of those dying, according to studies conducted by a palliative care nurse in Australia, Bronnie Ware.

The other regret was, “I wish I had let myself be happier,” adding that they didn’t know happiness was a choice until it was too late.

There are three ingredients to achieve sustainable happiness, the first thing is to realise it is up to you, meaning you choose, to be happy or unhappy – how do you choose to view the world? The second thing is to include three P’s daily/weekly or monthly ingredients in equal measures into the mix: Passion/purpose, Playtime/pleasure, and Peace.

Life is so busy, we barely have time to think about our own well-being, but the thing is, it is not one or the other, it is a healthy mixture of all three that creates a sense of sustainable happiness, and then choosing it every day in equal measures.

An example would be to meditate for 5 minutes in the morning before work. Doing work, that gives you a sense of purpose or something you are passionate about, Then making time to go for dinner with friends or eat a double chocolate cake with caramel on top and end off with a hot bath before bedtime.

Peace, passion and pleasure are now included in your weekly schedule, then rinse and repeat every week, until a new habit is formed.

  1. Why is this important to you?

Why do you value what you do? Why are your goals and purpose important to you? The why is your core and you cannot lie to yourself as to why you want it, because sooner or later it will be found out.

You will know deep down inside, why you want to live a certain way, whether it is fame or fortune, impact or pleasure you are after, either way, just be honest with yourself when you answer this question because no one needs to know your why, just you.

You cannot lie to yourself and live a life with integrity. We need to be more honest with ourselves and make ourselves count. We matter. Our why will give us the confidence to say no when unrealistic expectations have been placed on us.

And this leads us to the last two questions:

  1.  Commitment
  • How are you going to live with integrity?
  • And when are you implementing the actions?

These last two questions are crucial to the integrity of your purpose. You need to be clear about your strategy and then action them.

Once you have the idea that you want to manifest into your world, you have to believe that you are worth having it right? Integrity is all about living by your word and doing what you say you will do, as this keeps you accountable and reassures you, that you are indeed trustworthy because you did what you said you will do.

And this is the part where we fall short because we are so busy pleasing everyone around us, that we end up taking on way more than humanly possible and expect miracles to happen.

This is the number one reason that people leave their jobs, the expectations placed upon them are unrealistic and in our quest to please everyone, we keep saying yes – hoping that miracles will fall through the sky right about now so that we can meet those insane expectations that were placed on us.

We do the same thing to ourselves. So, to combat this, you need to create smart goals that can be broken into smaller projects.

This is your actionable and realistic strategy on how you will make this idea come to life and then give it a timeline – again, one that is realistic. Don’t go and do the same mistake, and take on too many things, as you will fail and the trust you need to build with yourself will remain broken and integrity is gone – your word is no longer your bond, and then you fall back into the ditch of hopelessness and live a live void of meaning and purpose – all because you could not say no.

If you can learn to build this special bond with yourself, then you always have a place to go when the world becomes too much. When you reach this place of belonging within yourself, you become unstoppable.

Lynn Erasmus is a Third Culture Individual, and a multi-award-winning entrepreneur, journalist & speaker, shifting the audience from a place of fear to curiosity. She connects leaders and management with their teams, by helping them understand their core values, vision and team strengths and then bringing them together to achieve their shared goals through Cultural IQ. She delivers these outcomes through interactive keynotes, fun away days, focused masterclasses & training, and in-depth coaching sessions. As the Founder of SYMBL CIC, she is a fierce advocate for Inclusivity, Diversity, Equality and Belonging, where she helps companies to adapt their company culture to become innovative and sustainable global leaders.


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