Why the Need for Measurement Can Hinder Results

Keeping tabs

We have this need to measure everything: our weight, speed, productivity, love and the list can go on and on.

What does this do?

There are definitely pros. They can be the tangible results of improvement, tracked progress and more which seems to lead us to, ‘why talk about this?’

This thought hit my mind as I sat on the bike this morning. As I sat down and started to pedal (and half asleep at 6am), I realized it was without a computer. I thought about moving thinking I needed to know my speed, etc, yet changed my mind. I wanted to experiment, or play, and was just plain curious. I decided that I wanted to simply listening to my body and how it reacted with the bike rather than worry about the numbers. I ended up sweating, more than I usually do, and feeling accomplished afterwards.

Sometimes when we stop sizing ourselves up we exceed our perceived results. We push our limits.

This always happens to me while I run. I am supposed to measure my speed and stay on pace. Then there are times that I run without looking at my watch and, a funny thing happens, I tend to run faster and for longer.

The same thing happens in life. Sometimes if we stop looking at the scale or measuring our performance through grades and numbers, we can see that we are doing alright, often better than we thought or hoped.

Measuring can be helpful but sometimes we need to throw out the scales and skip forward with how we are feeling. It’s about trusting ourselves without judgement.

Think about the ways that you measure yourself in your life. Be curious to explore these boundaries and see what happens. Let go of the control in needing to always know something and see what happens. I dare you.

3 Ways to Reignite Your Curiosity

We always have something to complain about and honestly, I am no different. Being a teacher who has been abroad for 9 years, I have definitely seen the positives and negatives to each and every curriculum in the school systems. Regardless, my message and goal stays constant for my students has continued to remain the same: to create lifelong learners.

While discussing this topic recently, I was explaining that my main goal was that if my students came out of the year curious and engaged, that I had done my job. I felt fulfilled and so excited to send them off into the world. Forget the little-gritty stuff (which we obviously need to learn as well), but the big idea for me was to see my students leaving the year feeling excited to learn more.

What happens to us as adults? Why do we lose this integral skill as we get older?

When we were young, we were interested in the world around us and we felt that there were endless opportunities. Overtime, we lost focus on what was really important to us, life got in the way and we had responsibilities we needed to put first.

The truth is, curiosity is what drives many other paths such as creativity, critical thinking and emotional intelligence (which are some of the top 10 skills that are trending by World Economic Forum.)

How do we bring that spark back? How do we become and continue to be lifelong learners?

Let’s look at what curiosity actually means: a strong desire to know or learn something, an unusual or interesting object or fact.

If this is the case, how do we begin to unfold our own curiosity? Here are three things that can get you started:

1) Presence - Take a moment during your next walk or pause and check in with how you are feeling during any particular time in the day. Look around you and appreciate the things around you. Find what could fascinate you in that moment.

2) Try something new - What is something you have always wanted to try but haven’t had the time? Maybe fear as got in the way? Jump out of your comfort zone and begin to learn something new.

3) Ask questions to REAL people - I love to google things but what I’ve realised is that when I ask a question, to a real human being, I can have the most engaging conversations that lead to much more than that one question I was looking for. Curiosity is contagious and soon you will have those around you striving for the same desire to learn.

These 3 steps allow us to build the confidence to propel us forward in asking more questions, being active observers in the world and taking more risks. There are so many reasons not to do these things, but the truth is, aren’t you just a little bit curious as to what your life could look like if you started to be a lifelong learner?

Looking Back at 2018

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A year has almost gone since starting this venture and moving into a more truthful, vulnerable life. Of course, it hasn’t been all roses but I can say that my constant commitment to myself has allowed me to really have a fulfilling year. Much of this comes from my vision of what I wanted for my year.

Yes, I am one of those: I envision what I want and put all of that energy into my vision board. For those who haven’t seen my board for this year, check it out here.

My vision for 2018 had a mixture of health and community-related events. I focused on completing two half Ironmans and changing my physical habits. There was also the inspiration to create a community where I was. Even though I had no idea how I would get what I wanted, the what had been concretely placed in front of me.

Training for a half Ironman was tough physically, emotionally and mentally. It broke me during times and I was originally so overwhelmed in how I would achieve it. That is when I met my coach. She is my saviour. With her help, I managed to not only achieve my dream of completing a half Ironman, but complete it in 5 hours and 35 minutes! It really changed my belief that I CAN do anything.

The community was not exactly what I had planned but, reflecting on it, I see what I needed in my life and that was the community created in Lucca. This was my second year running Yoga on the Walls - Lucca and this year was wear things really started to click. We held weekly events and met up afterwards. We started meditation groups, other events and led to many projects around Lucca. This community filled my soul.

There were other little things on my board that involved healthy living and enjoying the simplicity in life. In many ways, there were many moments like this while in others I gave myself permission to be who I wanted to be in the moment (which included eating gelato). There was even a little piece of the board that included a man which my friend made me focus on. Even though I wasnt ready, I wanted a Jamie Fraser (Google him if you don’t know who he is and I will try not to be offended). I’ve finished this year knowing that I am now ready.

What I have put out there has come back to me in many ways. When I took that time to dig deep and find out the things that I want, it allowed me to also not display the things I do NOT want. This has led to a purposeful way to manifest.

What are you currently sending out to the universe? Are you still focusing on what you don’t want yet continue to receive it? Take a moment to check in with yourself and see what it is you really want. Place it somewhere and let go of the how and then start to see and seize the opportunities.

When It's Time to Walk Away

I had been living in Italy for two years - two beautiful years. Full of frustration, love, joy, sadness, lessons and much more. That period had taught me so much about myself and, as sad I was to say goodbye, I knew it was the right time to leave.

The truth is, we all have something that we need to close the door on. The problem is that many of us live from a place of fear rather than trust. The lack of faith brings us to sacrifice our truest potential.

3 telling signs we are ready to move on:

1) Remember your ‘why’: What was your ‘Why’? Have you fulfilled it? My ‘why’ to moving to Italy was to heal: Heal my heart, my soul, and my life. Once I fulfilled that, I realized that I needed to move forward to something that was going to bring me to the next place I needed to be.

2) We become less creative: Creativity is crucial in our lives and when we get comfortable, stagnant and even bored, we can find ourselves becoming complacent. We don’t explore anymore, we lose our imagination and stop growing. We get trapped in the vicious cycle which spirals into moodiness and less clarity.

3) It no longer serves you: Are things becoming extraordinarily hard? Problems keep coming up? This definitely happened as I was trying to stay in Italy. Issues were arising and signs were definitely coming up: Relationships shifted or getting anything done was difficult and a major process.

I’ve been exploring the idea of letting go of things that no longer serve me. One thing that I’ve realized was whenever I close a door, I have many options that open up. It can seem scary, but the positives that have come out this have been phenomenal. By not holding onto attachment, we can allow ourselves any of the possibilities out there.

I now live in England and I’m here looking at new opportunities, new ways to see the world. I am ready. What’s holding you back from moving to the life that you want?