July 29, 2019

My Grand Canyon Accident… And the Helicopter that Pulled Me Out

My Grand Canyon Accident… And the Helicopter that Pulled Me Out

Turning pro is a mindset. If we are struggling with fear, self-sabotage, procrastination, self-doubt, etc., the problem is, we’re thinking like amateurs. Amateurs don’t show up. Amateurs crap out. Amateurs let adversity defeat them. The pro thinks differently. He shows up, he does his work, he keeps on truckin’, no matter what.
–Steven Pressfield

On Friday I reached out to my coach in a moment of total weakness and vulnerability. I told her I was lazy and undisciplined. I asked her if she could give me some exercises to fix it. To FINALLY help me turn my life around so I wouldn’t procrastinate any more.

She chuckled. Not really AT me. But sort of under her breath.

And then she sent me an email with a detailed list of all of the things I’d completed in the seven days prior. The list included a huge push to complete a bunch of projects in advance, so I could have sinus surgery. Then actual surgery. Then a big push (post-surgery) to prepare our house for a German family coming to stay. Then the actual hosting of that family. And in between, all of my coaching calls and daily work activities (which I’d completed while I was at about 50% power).

After that, she contacted me through messenger and asked if I still wanted to talk about how lazy and undisciplined I am.

And then I chuckled.

But this is how it happens for me (and I know I’m not the only one):

I set incredible expectations for myself with arbitrary deadlines that border on the ridiculous. And then I wake up and flog myself because I don’t meet them.

I look away from my work for more than a day or two, and it feels like I’ve been gone forever and the sky is falling and I have to start from scratch.

I begin a project and expect IMMEDIATE results. And when I don’t see them, I begin to catalog the reasons why I am a loser.

I help OTHER people deal with this kind of shit.

But here’s what I know: these self-judgments that I’m lazy, undisciplined, unruly, uncommitted, less productive than other people… they are the GRAND CANYON for me. These stories are so deep and so dark (and developed over the course of so many years in my life) that if I’m not careful, I can fall right into them and get lost for days.

You may not play THESE particular stories on a continuous loop as I do in dark moments. Yours may be that you’re a quitter. Or you’re not creative. Or you don’t fit in. Or you’re anal-retentive and anxious. Or you’re unattractive and irritating. Or any number of other nasty self-assessments that bear very little resemblance to the truth.

It doesn’t matter what they are. For you or for me. It only matters that each of us has her own Grand Canyon. And each of us walks dangerously close to the edge from time to time.

You know what else I know? These stories are not going away. The little voice in my head that prattles on about me being a whole lotta nothing is part of me. She’s a bitchy little thing. But she’s all mine.

Thankfully (for you and for me), there’s a third thing I know: over time, we can practice and develop a mindset that will lift us like a rescue helicopter OUT of that Grand Canyon, and set us right back to safety. Far enough away from the edge that we can run and skip again.

That mindset is required in order for us to build big brands.

In order for us to show ourselves completely.

In order for us to be seen and heard without cracking wide open.

In order for us to stay in the game—to show up for more again and again when things don’t go exactly as planned.

In order for us to go NEXT LEVEL.


If you’re getting lost in your own Grand Canyon, I want you to meet in Mission Bay, San Diego in October for the PrimeTime Essence Experience. I wanna talk about the mindset. The one that’s gonna be your rescue helicopter.

So you can put yourself out there for everyone to see. Even on the days you want to jump.

I love you so.

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