Right Questions and
Have the Best Summer of Your Life!
By Debbie Ford
Remember the last day of school when you were a kid? There was something so exciting about the idea of the whole summer stretching out before you. Summer was the time of year that held the greatest promise of fun, freedom and new adventures waiting to be had. Even as adults there is something invigorating about this time of year. The weather is warmer, the days are longer and we have the sense that fun and relaxation are on their way.
Today could be the day you decide to have the best summer of your life. It could be the season when you make feeling great in your body your number one priority. This could be the time when you decide to complete the tasks that would make your house a place you love to come home to. In the months that lie ahead you could give yourself the down time you’ve been longing for and come back to your daily life refreshed and renewed. You could plan a family getaway and create priceless memories with those you love. But whether this will be the best or the worst summer of your life will depend primarily on the choices you make every step of the way.
Your ability to choose for yourself and to chart your own course might just be your most precious gift. If you can choose, then you can determine which decisions you will make about your body, your health, your relationships, your finances, your career, your social life and your spiritual beliefs. Choice gives you the power to be successful or unfulfilled, to be good or great, to keep moving toward your goals or to veer off course. You are the one who gets to choose whether you will work or play, save or spend, be responsible or be a victim, whether you will keep busy or slow down. Choice gives you the ability to design and create your life however you please. But what’s important to realize is that the quality of your life at every moment is determined by the quality of the choices you make.
Where you are in your life today is based on the choices you made yesterday, and the ones you made three days ago, three months ago and three years ago. To create the best summer of your life you must ask the Right Questions, which will lead you to make powerful, life-changing choices that are in alignment with what you truly desire.
Your Vision Map and Your Default Map
If you are committed to making the months that lie ahead of you the best of your life, the first thing you will have to get clear about is what it is you want. What is your highest vision for yourself over the next three months? What experiences and feelings are most important to you? By identifying your goals and desires, you create a reference point for your daily choices. Your vision will act like a map reminding you where you want to go.
The problem is, most of us don’t create a vision for the summer we desire. Instead we are guided by what I call our default map. Our default map is the automatic programming of our past. When we take directions from this map, we fall prey to our repetitive patterns and the whims of our habitual behaviors. Our actions are reactions sourced by guilt, obligation, habit, comfort, fear or laziness. When we follow our default map we naturally end up making the same old choices and arriving at the same familiar destinations. In order to create a summer unlike any other we must take the time to clarify and connect with our vision.
The choices we make on a daily, weekly and monthly basis will either lead us closer to our desired destinations or they will head us in the opposite direction. Our vision is the compass, the true north by which we can navigate our daily actions and behaviors. So whether your summer goal is to feel great in your body, bring more order to your home, rekindle the fire in your marriage or spend quality time with your children, the Right Questions are designed to get you there.
The Right Questions
The Right Questions consist of ten powerful inquiries designed to reveal what is motivating your actions. With questions such as Will this choice propel me toward an inspiring future or will it keep me stuck in the past? Am I standing in my power or am I trying to please another? and Is this an act of self-love or is it an act of self-sabotage? The Right Questions will immediately clarify your thinking and support you in making choices that are in your highest and best interest. They allow you to see whether the choice you are about to make is a reflection of your vision and your true desires, or whether it is sourced by your past ? your default map. Asking these questions will give you the power and inspiration to consciously create a summer you feel great about ? one choice at a time. They will help you become aware of the important choices and their consequences. They will guide and support you in making the right choices, and there you will find the most direct route to the best summer of your life.
Here is a simple process you can use to chart your course to a fabulous summer:
1. Identify your goal or vision. Looking forward over the next three months, what is most important to you? How do you want to feel at the end of the summer? What areas of your life do you want to nourish and strengthen in the months ahead?
2. Imagine what the attainment of that goal will feel like. What will be different in your life? What will you have more of?
3. Commit to fulfilling that objective. Give yourself permission to create whatever it is your heart desires.
4. Use The Right Questions to support you at each crossroads and to make sure your actions, choices and behaviors are leading you toward your summer goals.
This article in based on the book “THE RIGHT QUESTIONS: Ten Essential Questions To Guide You To An Extraordinary Life” by New York Times #1 best-selling author, Debbie Ford, an inter-nationally recognized expert in the field of personal transformation. Her previous three books, “The Dark Side of the Light Chasers,” “Spiritual Divorce,” and “The Secret of the Shadow” have been translated into twenty-two languages and are used as teach-ing tools in universities and other institutions of learning and enlightenment worldwide. She is the founder of The Ford Institute for Integrative Coaching, a personal development organization that trains committed individuals with skills, distinctions, and processes to facilitate a unique form of coaching. For information see www.debbieford.com .
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