Your world has changed especially if you were involved in a structured summer program or created one for yourself! You can’t escape the chaos that seems to have invaded your world now that you have settled back into your routine. It’s hard to keep a clear perspective because your newly learned skills and tools will have altered your thinking in size and scope each and every day. You may feel you have lost your map; your security blanket. The old ways and habits keep creeping in and want to pull you back into a time where you felt you knew how to behave and knew how it all worked. Your mind seems to have become overloaded with too much information, lots of knowledge fragments and not enough time to process it all. This might make you feel unstable and can even shake your belief in your brand. It may even be hard to have a clear vision of your future at this point. What you now need is an updated context combining the new with what you know already works for you. This will allow you to better understand how to make those critical decisions as you move forward. Understanding how you see, hear and feel this personal expansion is crucial to being able to access it. So start your experiment of how this is going to benefit you by selecting, incorporating and applying this information as you move forward. You need this new map so you can navigate this journey with panache and continue to grow your Personal Brand successfully.

I invite you to consider a new perspective from which to interpret your world; a viewpoint where change and constant creation are in sync which is a great way to sustain order and strength on your journey. As you move forward with all this new information you collected this summer, you might notice that when you got home some of your old systems started to fall apart. You might have also noticed that in doing so they quickly started to reorganize themselves to include some of the information you just learned. It may feel chaotic but you are not lost or in harm’s way. Here is an opportunity to stay awake and notice how this change is occurring. It can be scary work incorporating new ideas, visions, tools and skills but this is how we all learn anything and everything.

“No problem can be solved from the same consciousness that created it.” – Albert Einstein

So stop looking for your life to be predictable. There are three things in life you can know for sure; you can’t get out of life without dying, you will always have to pay taxes and that change will forever occur. We are always looking for better ways to objectively measure and perceive our lives and our world. It’s my belief that the best way to proceed is to remain curious – ask lots of really good questions and look for answers that have meaning to you at your core – engage your creativity – know that everything is always new, different and unique to you, and you must experiment to find what works – engaging in life moment by moment gives you a better your chance for success – lastly creating and maintaining relationships is where it’s at, and of course, the most important relationship is always the you have with yourself.

“If life were measured by accomplishments, most of us would die in infancy.” – A. P. Gouthey

Let me ask what would happen if you lost control, were genuinely surprised at every turn, looked at the novelty of the situation and lost your equilibrium once in awhile? To me that is keeping life in balance. It gives me permission to experiment with a new vocal technique, try new skills and tools, fail, learn what worked and try again, or perhaps choose a different way of looking at interpreting a character whose words I will be singing. It gives me the freedom to explore my world even if it seems chaotic sometimes. I can be independent with my own inventiveness as to where and how my career unfolds. I have allowed myself to be responsible for my choices in life and my career. I acquire fortitude, self confidence and faith in my ability to know failure and mistakes will happen, but that what I choose to learn from them is how I grow and become more of who I am so everyone can see me.

It’s really easy to fall back into your old ways and habits once you are back in your real life. The question is, are you the same person you were? If the answer is not really, then how do you think you can possibly start from where you were before and what you knew before? You have to start from where you are now. You are new each and every moment whether you want to believe it or not. So there is no going back, only using your new thoughts, skills and tools, information, and the transformations that are now, the new you. It’s thrilling, exciting and invigorating to ramp up who you are and let the whole world notice. Your thinking has been altered in the most fundamental ways. You have chosen the red pill just like in the movie “The Matrix” and there is no going back. It’s time to start your journey anew, not waiting for the right moment or solution. But right this minute.

Then it’s time to share what you have experienced with others. You will no doubt wander back and forth from being bold and moving forward to falling back into our old behaviors, in and out, but being able to recognize this behavior as part of the growth process helps keep it all in perspective. It’s OK to falter, to fall off the horse; just make sure you recognize it for what it is and make the choice to get right back on.

This means you will need to have lots of courage, patience, compassion and forgiveness with yourself along the way. It then becomes a journey well worth taking because you will have the courage and vision to continually be expanding and modifying your map and that leads to you consistently becoming more of who you are than you have ever been before.

“This is the setting out. The leaving of everything behind. Leaving the social milieu. The preconceptions. The definitions. The language. The narrowed field of vision. The expectations. No longer expecting relationships, memories, words or letters to mean what they used to mean. To be, in a word: Open.” – Rabbi Lawrence Kushner

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