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  • Darci Daniels

Let It Be Easy (Part 2)


(Part 1 is here, in case you haven’t read it.)


I’m going to give you some more practical steps to Let It Be Easy, and I’m going to tell you my personal journey with this shift. First up, self-awareness. When I was re-setting up my life after leaving the corporate world, which had dominated my schedule and my life for so long, I had some looking inward to do. My schedule had gone from jam-packed and complicated with a shit-ton of sitting in traffic to really very simple and almost no driving. What did I want to do? When did I want to eat? How long did my body really want to sleep each night? (That one was fun – no alarms! Turns out my body likes to go to bed between 10:30 and 11:30 and wake up around 7-7:30. Ish.)


I tackled one of the biggest hurdles I’ve ever had in my life and started working out regularly for the first time. No, seriously! If you know me well, you know what a HUGE deal that is. My parents were PE teachers. I was the rebellious daughter who believed sitting on the couch and watching copious amounts of TV was all the exercise I needed. Except I knew that wasn’t actually true, and I spent years beating myself up over the fact that I couldn’t seem to just do this one thing for my health – work out regularly. But I started walking in November. Every day. Because I decided that’s who I was. I was a walker. I could do that. I would get up and walk every morning. I just flipped the switch, and I let it be easy. And when I didn’t do it, I didn’t tell myself I wasn’t a walker anymore, that I was a loser, that I was lazy… like I’d always done before. No, I just re-promised myself I’d walk tomorrow and recommitted to taking it day by day. I’m still someone who walks for exercise, and I’ve added other workouts to my routine. I’m also someone who keeps my promises to myself. This is who I am now. Let. It. Be. Easy.


Then I decided I really was going to do this entrepreneur thing, full-out. I’d been kind of half-doing it, trying but not really putting all my effort into it (because, fear. Not because I didn’t want to). I was making plans B, C, D, and E in my head in case I failed. I even told my chiropractor I could fill-in part time at their front desk. But then something happened – I started to panic about that. It didn’t feel right. It didn’t feel like the anxiety that I had around my business, which was scary but exciting. It felt frustrating to tie up that much of my time that I could be using to build my business. As luck would have it, the next day I got an email about a potentially big project I’d all but given up on. It looked like it could happen, and if it did, I couldn’t be holding down a part-time job and take on this project. Decision made.


That flipped another switch. Instead of stressing about that potentially big project, dwelling on it in a negative way, I’d let it go. I’d made a move to do something else. Even though a part-time job wasn’t something I ultimately wanted, when I flipped my energy around it things shifted. This was interesting to me. The less I stressed and worried about something, the more likely I was to get what I wanted. I tested it out. It happened several more times. I’d like to tell you that was all I needed to really go all-in, but honestly, I still had a lot of fears to deal with at that point. Although working through those was, well, WORK, it was also easy because I could see it held a higher purpose – all of the things I was coaching myself around were the things my clients need to be coached around. I’m my own best client!


There are various things in my personal life I’ve done the same thing with, like being a mom who doesn’t need my daughter to be anyone other than who she is. I’m not fighting against her nature anymore; I’m going with it. She’s super sassy and smart, and a teenager. She challenges me like crazy, and the more I push back, the harder she pushes. So, I’m dropping the rope. I’m setting my boundaries, lovingly, and only pushing on the things that are about her safety and security. She needs to make mistakes, and I need to not go crazy. (I decided when she was fairly young that the more difficult things got, I needed to remember the mantra – “I don’t have any lessons to teach, only love to give.” It’s been surprisingly helpful!) Drawing healthy boundaries is a whole other subject, but firm, loving boundaries are absolutely necessary. Yes, you also need to decide to have boundaries and then what they are going to be. Not only with your kids, but with your boss, your spouse, your parents, your friends, your co-workers and clients, and yourself.*


Myself. Yeah, that’s been the biggest switch of all. I’d known for several years that I didn’t love myself very much. It’s one of the first “self-helpy” things you learn – that loving yourself is oh-so-important. The problem is, no one ever tells you how it works. I’m sorry to say, I’m not going to either (at least not in this article. I’m HAPPY to coach you around this). Once I worked on it and reached a point that I could say “hey, I really do love myself now!” the next week my anxiety would kick-up and it would seemingly evaporate. Loving myself unconditionally in a way that I could actually hold on to? Was elusive, to put it mildly. I did reach a point that I felt like I had it, and then my breakdown happened and I had to start all over again, by loving myself with anxiety. That may have been the toughest part of all. I was breaking promises to myself and my business right and left. As a mom I was pretty much keeping it together, and I had been keeping my promise to myself of working out, which was huge. But as far as everything else went, I was on a roller coaster. I never knew day to day, minute to minute, how I was going to feel. Once I felt like I got my feet under me and started to feel “normal” again (thanks, anxiety!), I was afraid to rock the steady boat by looking any deeper. But self-doubt, worry, fear, and disbelief all have a way of creeping up again and again when you’re pointing that stick at yourself. It doesn’t go away until you deal with it. So, I met my self-doubt, worries, fears, and issues head on with the help of some amazing coaches, and I’m happy to say I’m in a pretty darn good place now!


Is it easy all the time?? No! Is it easier than it used to be, than I was making it? Hell yes!


There’s one key piece to this I want to elaborate on: I decided not to take responsibility for other people’s feelings so much. What? Don’t try to twist myself into something I’m not so someone else will be happy?? Can I do that?! Yep. The plain fact is – and I’m going to say it out-loud here – my mental health and happiness is more important than theirs. Because I have to live with myself every second of every day. And I can’t be a good person/mom/coach/sister/friend if I’m not okay with me. Their mental health, mood, and feelings aren’t my responsibility or really even my business. It’s theirs.


Well that just took a turn I didn’t see coming. (There are so many layers to this, and if you want to hear more or tell me why you think that’s selfish crap, I’d love to talk. Email me at lifecoachdarci@gmail.com.)


Okay, back to simple and Letting It Be Easy...


Step one: figure out what you want more of. Happiness? Success? Peace? Take a look at what you crave and WHY, and what it looks like for you. This is important. Happiness doesn’t look the same to everyone. In fact, what makes me happy (keeping the house clean!) is sometimes very different from what makes my daughter happy (not cleaning!).

If you catch yourself saying, “I need my kids/co-workers/friends/family to get along for me to be happy” -- Nope. That’s not how this works. If you’re asking for something or someone outside of you to change in order for YOU to be happy, you’re not going to get it, because you can’t control them.


What do I mean then, by what does it look like for you? You’ve gotta go inside. To how it feels. How does it look inside YOU, your brain, your heart, whatever, to feel happy? When is the last time you felt the thing you want more of? There. That’s what you’re shooting for. It’s never the thing we want, it’s always the feeling we’re after. Then get clear on why you want it. For example, would you like to win the lotto? Why? Not for the money. The money is nice, but it just sits there, being money. What you want to buy with the money is usually the aim. And why do you want that stuff? To feel good! To be happy! To feel free and secure and cool! This is what I’m saying… deep down, under what you think you want, what are the feelings you expect it to give you? THAT’S what you really want. (I know, it’s like a magic trick!)


Step two: I hope you’ve already noticed deciding is the key component. Decide to be the feeling you want. Decide to be happier, more successful, peaceful, relaxed, more loving, etc. Not that you will be in the future, but that you already are, now. I mean it – decide right now. I’ve decided to be more peaceful and less stressed. Right now. This minute. Oh wait, there are 10,000 emails awaiting my response? Okay, I’ll do them, one at a time. And while I do, I’m still deciding to be peaceful. LET IT BE EASY.


Step three: Repeat, reconfirm, recommit to your decision over and over. This isn’t something you do once and poof! It’s done! No, you’ll have to recommit to your decision whenever you’re stressed and find yourself not in alignment with what you want.

If I’ve decided to be successful, and I want to blow off work to sit on the couch and watch reality TV while I play solitaire on my phone, then what am I actually deciding? Sometimes we do need a break. But is it getting me closer to what I want, or pulling me farther away? You will have to reconfirm your decision several times a day when you first start this practice. I know, that doesn’t sound very easy. Be gentle with yourself. It gets easier.


In some ways, it may seem easier to hand over the responsibility of how you feel to someone else. You look to your friends or family to make you feel good. You look to your boss for praise. You look to your partner for love. The thing is, when we do that, we’re cheating ourselves. Because that responsibility is too big for another person. When required, they will drop your need for happiness to tend to their own, as they should. It’s too big a job for them because it’s not their job. It’s yours. Whatever you’re looking for – success, peace, happiness, love, security, confidence – no one else can make it happen for you long-term, except for you. (That’s the real truth behind other people’s feelings not being your business, because your feelings aren’t their business either. This doesn’t mean you can walk around all day acting like a jackass though! Once you love and respect yourself, you’ll love and respect others more too. And you'll require it in return -- again, boundaries*. We’re all just doing the best we can. Treat yourself with grace and kindness, and you’ll find it easier to do the same for others.)


Let me know what you think the comments here, or drop me a line. I’d love hearing what you get from this!


*Thank you for the boundary work, Meadow DeVor!

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