Life is Calling … Only You Can Answer

What happens when what you feel is SO INTENSE that you can’t dismiss it? It’s so powerful; if you ignore it, the noise only becomes louder …

A friend of mine is going through this. Life is calling her, more and MORE everyday. She shuffles through all the possibilities. Overwhelmed by the options. Excited by the prospect of something new. Considering living in other countries. Aware that “running from her problems” won’t solve them. Although in her mid twenties, she is calling it a “mid life crisis” (although humorous, she’s not joking – it’s real for her). As this noise gets louder, it drowning out the opinions of others & her own logical mind. She’s now tapping into something bigger then her. Although scary & unfamiliar grounds, it’s the gateway to a life of possibility!

After all “new inputs = new outputs”.

(Maybe this is true for you too …)

As someone who is familiar with this process … it seems others turn down this voice, not believing in their worth as a human-being or simply saying “next time”. This friend however is fortunate, she’s listening to it. With commitment, great reward can come for her, more then she even knows. Some might say the “fruits of life”. If you’ve seen or read “The Secret”, it’s like that, but real life, not some mystical thing.

For me, finding & honouring this voice is the very reason I’m committed to being more everyday. Also why I strive to be more open & authentic on my blog every entry (scary as it is sometimes). The voice is the most powerful “thing” I’ve ever found; it’s all inside me. Just like your voice is inside you … it’s not in your friends, family, coaches, teachers … anyone else, although they might help you find it. It’s 100% in you.

Finding your voice —> where to start?

As mentioned above, your voice is 100% in you, which means yes … it starts & ends with you. Here are some questions to consider …

  • Why are you here?
  • What draws passion out of you?
  • What do you want out of life?

(take some time to be with these questions … the answers may be elusive, but they’re very valuable)

* Tip: look at times in your life where you’ve “swam downstream”, where things happened easily. Life doesn’t need to be hard, that’s something we create.

Here’s what’s true for me …

“A large part of my “why” is fueled by the loss of my father, in addition to a deepening appreciation for life. It’s through this experience, I know life is to short to chase some “dream” unconsciously thinking it’s my passion (something I have done), when it’s more truly the passion of some author or speaker.

Consciously choosing my path is the most rewarding way to live. I can either float around aimlessly in the ocean, associating with “good people” and “cool things” or board the ship-liner of my journey & go for it!”

We’re only scratching the surface of what’s possible. Our potential to be powerful, open & responsible in our life & support others is left mostly untapped. Ego runs rampant in the world. We blame others, trapped as victims, not realizing we have the capacity to change our life experience, which will domino positively into the life of others.  All the potential in this world is latent inside you & me. It’s waiting …

Consider this … you’re one of 6 billion people who’ve been selected to walk the face of this earth, for somewhere between 50-100 years. That’s phenomenal! Someday you will be a part of history. How will you reflect on your life? How will others speak of you?

Will it be in awe & gratitude for what you’ve done, & who you’ve been?

It’s 100% possible, in fact you may already be on that path. Ultimately you know best … that voice will speak 😉

What if you could start this journey today, would you?

I hope so. You deserve it & it’s available!

Email me kyle@kylemcneil.com if you’re looking for guidance on this or simply want to discuss.

All the best,

Kyle

PS – “The DNA of Success” is a great book to consider reading. Zufelt says: “when you’ve found your core purpose, you’ll climb mountains & swim rivers to achieve your goal”. 15 months ago I wasn’t anywhere near this place. It was an incredibly trying time, so lost & nowhere near my purpose. This awareness though, was the first step towards change & ultimately a much more fulfilling life experience. After all isn’t that the point? To LIVE life …

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1 Month Ago Today … everything changed

1 month ago, today @ 1pm – my brother called me …

Robin: “Hi Kyle, how’s it going”?

Me: “good Robin, what’s up”?

Robin: “dad has passed away” …

(Our conversation continued, but you get the point … not easy to take …)

A couple week later a friend from Florida asked me “what happened”; here’s my reply …

My dad fought cancer for over 2 years. Cancer of the esophagus. As the months closed, so did his throat & his ability to take on food. The last weeks were painful. At one point he said to me “every moment bleeds into the next” … he never said it explicitly, but I could tell it was hell. Very much.

He used to be 240 lbs; died at around 150 (at best). I said good bye to his physical body, the day after he passed. First with my mom & brother as a family. Then one last trek in to say goodbye to my father. The hardest moment of my entire life to this point. As I once again feel the agony of the experience – I close in saying, thank you for your friendship & sharing in this opportunity we call life.

Kyle

In the last 30 days, here are some things that are real for me …

1) It’s said “when the WHY is strong enough the HOW will show itself”. The passion inside to really “go for it” in life – the WHY, is stronger then ever for me. As Dr David Wolf tells, living with a sense of “urgency”, is the idea that “every moment counts”. David lost his mother in early February, making the theme of urgency relevant for him as well.

2) People are inherently well intentioned, even through layers of advice, like “stay strong” and “he’s in a better place now”. Tip: 80% of people have some type of advice around death – on the whole, as survivor it’s quite relentless … 5-10 ppl/day with advice is difficult to deal with. Please consider the power of this “The First Duty of Love is to Listen”.

* Note: the tone in the linked blog post, is considerably stronger then the message here. Different circumstance. So it’s clear I am grateful for all the support. Also I’m aware, death isn’t an easy thing to handle, regardless of proximity. Goal here is to be honest & shed “light” on the experience & topic … maybe to help others in the future.

3) Further to that, having great friendships really showed its worth – thank you to these countless people!

Enjoy your day & the moment,

Kyle

PS – the message isn’t necessarily “don’t give advice” … more so to consider reducing “it” especially around times of extreme hardship.

Fear … Leading the Way

Fear is a friend of mine … it points me in the right direction.

Into the fear, that’s the path … the one that holds the greatest lessons & tastiest fruit. For many months my fear has frustrated me, until today. This morning over breakfast, I thought … why not become “friends” with my fear?

Be thankful … afterall it’s only present in my life to guide …

Is this the same for you?

Kyle

Published in: on February 25, 2010 at 4:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Self Serving or Truly Serving??

Over coffee yesterday morning Stephen Lau asked my motive for wanting to meet (a fair question, since it was the first time we’d had a “meeting”). My answer was in the line of: “exploring ways we can collaborate/support one another”.

In the Joint Venture world, we call this creating “overlap”. In other words, mutual interest in reciprocal success.As conversation evolved Stephen talked about “service above self” & how integral this paradigm is towards the partnerships & agreements he *does* enter.

And you know what??!! As my entrepreneurial path evolves, this comes up so much!! Successful business people are VERY conscious about avoiding the “self-server” & instead work with the responsible and capable team player.

On the topic, my friend Bryan Nickel shared some wisdom recently,

“When you’re focused on what you need, your ‘needs’ come out; people can smell that”

Newsflash!! In other words, “self serving” doesn’t work 😦

(in case you were sleeping)

*** On the flip side ...

Consider the “The Four Way Test”, courtesy of Rotary International … the four questions to ask before ever moving forward, on anything.

1. Is it the TRUTH?
2. Is it FAIR to all Concerned?
3. Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?

As Jill Brock mentioned on my facebook page this week,

“It is great to ‘serve’ others, when they want to be ‘served.’ Adding value (serving) doesn’t necessarily mean a product or service…but rather, value can be just knowing that you are there to support and empathize, whenever they need it”.

With this in mind, 2 short days ago this popped up in a book …

I sought my God and my God I could not find.

I sought my soul and my soul eluded me.

I sought my brother to serve him in his need,

and I found all three — my God, my soul & thee.

– Anonymous

Think back to a time when you shared something deep, something meaningful and it really impacted someone. How did that feel??

… yes, indeed … service at its finest 😉

Kyle

PS – thanks to everyone mentioned above – your wisdom and perspective inspires me.

Give to Nothing or Great??

Sometimes I see a quote and it blows my “doors off” … found this one in Stephen Covey’s “The 8th Habit”:

“I know this now. Every man gives his life to what he believes. Every woman gives her life for what she believes. Some people believe in little or nothing, and so they give their lives to little or nothing …”

– Joan of Arc

It’s painful knowing people give their energies to nothing … seems to be an awful waste (my sense is they feel the “waste” too … and it’s also hurting them). Thankfully there are people as one of my friends would say who are “fighting the good fight”. And there are many – all over the place.

Even those who are lost, they’re seeking answers … it’s our job to inspire & support them. After all …

“Nothing great has ever been done alone”

– Rod Woodson

Something to ponder …

Kyle

THE PARADOX OF OUR TIME

Found in Miles Patrick Yohnke’s newsletter & used with permission from him 🙂

THE PARADOX OF OUR TIME
By George Carlin
© 1999 © 2010 All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings, but shorter tempers; wider freeways, but narrower viewpoints.

We spend more, but have less; we buy more, but enjoy it less.

We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time; we have more degrees, but less sense; more knowledge, but less judgment; more experts, but more problems; more medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry too quickly, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too seldom, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values.

We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

We've learned how to make a living, but not a life; we've added years to life, not life to years.

We've been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.

We've conquered outer space, but not inner space.

We've done larger things, but not better things.

We've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul.

We've split the atom, but not our prejudice.

We write more, but learn less.

We plan more, but accomplish less.

We've learned to rush, but not to wait.

We build more computers to hold more information to produce more copies than ever, but have less communication.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion; tall men, and short character; steep profits, and shallow relationships.

These are the times of world peace, but domestic warfare; more leisure, but less fun; more kinds of food, but less nutrition.

These are days of two incomes, but more divorce; of fancier houses, but broken homes.

These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throw-away morality, one-night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer to quiet, to kill.

It is a time when there is much in the show window and nothing in the stockroom; a time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete.

That Was Listening?? You’re not serious …

Maybe you’ve experienced a situation where all you wanted to be was “heard??

Nothing more … nothing less.

If so, this will probably resonate with you …

The first duty of love is to listen

(Paul Tillich) Listening, real listening is what most people fail to do…listening is done not only with the ears but with all of our being. It is compassion and a tolerance that another may say something you don’t want to hear……It is the courage to have your world view change….real listening is a gift and a duty in love that you give to another that tells them they are cherished and of worth. On Listening (Ralph Roughton)

When I ask you to listen to me and you start by giving me advice, you have not done what I have asked.

When I ask you to listen to me and you begin by telling me why I shouldn’t feel that way, you are trampling on my feelings.

When I ask you to listen to me and you feel you have to solve my problems, you have failed me, strange as it may seem.

Listen!

All I ask is that you listen, not talk or do ….. just hear me. When you do something for me that I can do for myself, you contribute to my fear and inadequacy. And I can do for myself. I’m not helpless. Maybe discouraged and faltering, but not helpless. But, when you accept as simple fact that I do feel what I feel, no matter how irrational, then I can quit trying to convince you and get about the business of understanding what’s behind this irrational feeling. And when that’s clear the answers are obvious – and I don’t need advise. Irrational feelings make sense when we understand what is behind them.

Perhaps that’s why prayer works, sometimes, for some people ….. because God is mute, and doesn’t give advise or try to fix things.

—-

After learning REAL listening through Satvatove, it’s apparent MILLIONS of people everyday, seldom get “heard”.

Just in the last 24 hours, 2 friends approached me about this; in both instances the “listener” was giving them advice about their situation (without permission) and not actually listening. I used to assume that “giving advice” was hand in hand with being a good listener … and often it’s not. Even though it does have its time and place. It should be one tool of many, not the only one.

Some give advice … before determining the true situation. Also a big mistake. Sometimes these “advice feeders“would be served to put their giant ego to the side … at least for 5 minutes. Start with listening. To many people preach listening and don’t practice it.

“Praise” is also an all-time favourite amongst many and also something I did constantly for over 25 years. Why not give someone some praise? After all it will make them “feel better” right? Cover up the reality of their situation. Making them walk away saying, “well I feel a bit better, but I sure didn’t get to the heart of the matter”.

It serves them more to LISTEN. It ultimately serves you too, as the listener, b/c people’s trust will go through the roof. And if you’re authentic and well intentioned, there’s nothing wrong with this and absolutely everything right.

We all have the answers to our own questions and it’s WAY MORE POWERFUL when we create our own solutions, vs. having them feed from someone else. As great listeners we can help people find clarity in their own thoughts & empowerment in their own conclusions.

** Update on one of my friends, who I truly listened to …

She went from being hungry, lazily lying on the floor, feeling totally uninspired … to telling jokes, taking powerful responsiblity for her situation, making plans, etc., all with in the course of 45 minutes.  Allowing her to unload the weight she was feeling about life and BE HEARD, turned her day around 180 degrees & she authentically thanked me for it.

This it’s what’s possible for everyone of us! Just a matter of being willing to grow and learn some new skills. If we sit around and think grade 1-12 plus some post secondary is all the education we’ll need … that’s cheating ourselves, our friends, our family & society at large.

So it’s clear – I’m not a communication god. There’s still much to learn. Thanks to incredible teachers and an evolving circle of friends, I’m aware my own journey in this regard has just started.

As always, thoughts & comments are welcome.

Sincerely,

Kyle

PS –  Last Tuesday I woke to immense inspiration around this … “what if worldwide we could communicate on a really deep level”? What would that do for our problems? The war? The hate? The misunderstanding? The pain amongst in our very own families?  Satvatove for me is the doorway to what’s possible. Hundreds who’ve taken their courses & coaching would agree.

PSS – The things I saw in Florida this past August @ the Advanced Course, were some of the most profound things ever seen with my own two eyes. As a society we’ve only scratched the surface of what’s possible. We’re playing small … we can play bigger. Lastly, to my two dear friends who depart to Florida this Saturday – you’re both incredibly courageous for having the guts to take this on. My thoughts are with you and I await your return in two weeks time.

Published in: on December 3, 2009 at 5:51 pm  Comments (3)  
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Caught! Red Handed … what about you?

It’s Sunday afternoon, the snow is falling outside (in late April, oh boy!) and I’m contemplating what my 2nd ever blog post should be about? There’s so much that could be shared, but the trick is making interesting. Maybe that’s why I haven’t posted in three weeks … a case of ‘blog fright’!

Oh here we go, this is interesting … Super Web 2.0 expert Walter Schwabe talks about twitter as a ‘narcissism machine‘, where we get to flex and share our ego in an instant, done through ‘status updates’, etc.

I wasn’t even aware of this until I read Walter’s Blog … and the verdict is – I’m absolutely red handed! You got me Walter and exposed the fact that yes, I’m the guy who is ‘status update happy’ on facebook & enjoys giving the ‘thumbs up’ on other people’s status. You got me …

So I ponder … how self indulgent is a Blog? It takes more time to compose, but does that just make my case of narcissism worse? Should I be writing under a pseudonym? Hide from the police? Move to a deserted island, where they don’t have interent, to break the habit?

Whatever the answer is … this is way to much fun!

What about you … how do you relate to this? Possibly need to move to the deserted island too? haha.

Cheers,

Kyle

P.S. A simple way to stay in touch w/ my Blog is joining my Facebook group here & I’ll send you a quick message when I have a new post. This is also very snazzy & easy way to stay in touch, all on your time: http://commoncraft.com/rss_plain_english

Published in: on April 26, 2009 at 4:35 pm  Comments (3)  
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