Choose Your Own Seismic Shift

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Even a child with normal feet was in love with the world after he had got a new pair of shoes. Flannery O’Connor

The annual countdown will soon begin. 

Most of us will probably feel a little relieved to put 2021 behind us. It was the year we were supposed to “get back to normal.” I don’t know what a normal year looks like for you, but this wasn’t it. 

We’ve been disrupted in monumental ways for almost two years. 

One of the best ways to deal with disruption is to disrupt ourselves. We’ve had a lot of practice at being proactive, being the subject of change. 

Now we’re ready to be its agent.

That’s why 2022 will be a year of amazing professional and personal growth. The media calls it the Great Resignation, and I suggest we should instead call it the Great Aspiration. After a long and strange semi-hibernation, we are ready for something new. 

Not the old new. Something truly new.

Because of the pandemic, we may have a better idea of what we want next in life, and, in many cases, it isn’t this—whatever this is. We want better work-life balance, better pay, greater autonomy, and broader opportunities. The job market is friendly and amenable to our aspirations.

Perhaps your aspiration is personal rather than professional. Maybe you want to learn a language or an instrument or how to bake. Or you might want to travel, make a new friend, or engage in some kind of volunteer work. 

There are as many options for a new S Curve as there are people who want one. 

Our lives have been shaken for the past 20 months; a little more shaking up is unlikely to do us harm and might do us good, especially if we can choose our own seismic shift.

But maybe you feel like logistics are holding you back. Indeed, one of the biggest of these is money. You may find inspiration in this article about three women who creatively solved the cash crunch that can come with launching a new S Curve. One leveraged equity in her home with a refinance. Another abandoned home altogether and embraced unconventional living arrangements. The third had a partner who could cover basic expenses during the “gap year” of change. Each person’s choice involved economizing and some discomfort. Your options are likely to be different than theirs. But perhaps their stories will help you imagine what might make a new aSpiration possible for you. 

If there’s only one resolution, you keep, resolve to be the hero of your story in 2022.

This brings me to the podcast episode for this week, a great conversation with Dan Roam, author of The Pop-Up Pitch

We talk about why people are wired to love storytelling and how to use a storyteller’s toolkit to inspire and persuade, even ourselves! In 10 steps, Dan explains how we can turn a presentation into a story and any story into a hero’s journey. 

What story will you tell yourself about this coming year? What do you aSpire to do, and how can you move it from “dream” to “do”? 

Happy New S Year!

My best,

P.S. If you need some extra inspiration to go after your aSpirations, come to a unique online gathering Begin, Grow, Pivot, and Learn on January 20. Join Apolo Ohno, Pamay Bassey, Michael Bungay Stanier, and me for a 90-minute, interactive experience. You’ll leave with insights and tools to grow as you hope to in 2022. And, if you pre-order a book, you will receive a free ticket!

P.P.S. If you’ve already pre-ordered the book, just let me know!


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