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FREEDOM FRIDAY: The vicious cycle of 'wait till next year'

You can listen to the podcast version of this episode on Apple, Spotify, or this audio player:


In a little over a month, the gyms will be full and minds will be stocked with the motivational promise of a new year.


A few weeks later…


Those same gyms will be empty…


And many of those minds will be resigned to another year of un-joy, un-fulfillment, and un-freedom.


December is the month when people make themselves believe they’re “finishing the year strong” by simply promising themselves that “this year was a warmup; next year is the real thing!”


That leads into a sugar- and booze-laden holiday season in which you have time to engage in the motivational masturbation of the new business books and personal development porn you received under the Christmas tree…


Which fuels you with “just” enough dopamine to remain pumped up and positive through the first week of January.


Sorry to burst your holiday bubble if this story sounds all-too-familiar.


But I’ve coached, spoken to, and helped enough men during the past five years to know that this story is reality for many of you. The truth is, for the majority of my life it was MY reality.


And the best gift I can give you right now is a pattern interrupt in the hope that at least some of you reading this newsletter will become awake and aware before drifting into the same disempowering December-January feedback loop in which you’ve been trapped for years.


It’s with that in mind that I invite you to…


STOP.


Just stop.


Right now.


In this moment.


Verbally yell out, “STOP!” If you have to. Whatever it takes to snap yourself out of the feedback loop and get you to be present in the now.


Because, you see, right now is the only thing that matters.


Right now is where joy is to be found. It’s where fulfillment lives.


And it’s where your freedom is cultivated.


None of that is to be found in the discontent of obsessing about the future (whether that’s next week or next year).


And it’s certainly not be found by marinating in the trauma of yesterday.


The Calendar is an Opinion


As humans, we like to base our decisions on calendars. Certain dates can make us feel pleasure — or pain.


On the dates of our wedding anniversaries, we can feel happy.


On the dates marking the death of a loved one, we can feel sad.


We also use these dates as milestones. “New Year’s” resolutions, for example, are based on the turning of the calendar from December to January.


Except…all these dates are made up by fellow humans.


Christmas on December 25th? Made up by humans.


Is Western "New Year" more correct than Chinese New Year?


You were upset you missed your monthly sales quota in February — even though you would’ve hit it if it was Leap Year and you had an extra day.


Wait until you’re 65th birthday to start living because somebody somewhere decided that’s your “retirement” date.


It’s all an opinion.


And yet, we wait for the calendar to turn to start doing things. We allow made-up dates on a calendar to dictate our pleasure and pain.


This attachment to the calendar keeps us trapped in the past; or anxious about the future.


That keeps us from being present.


When we’re not present, we’re not content.


When we’re not content, we’re not joyful and fulfilled.


When we’re not joyful and fulfilled, we don’t feel free.


STOP.


Here and Now


So, how can you get out of this vicious cycle of “wait till next year?”


You can start by realizing that the choice to change your life for the better exists in this very moment.


Right here.


Right now.


You can hide from it by reading the books and listening to the podcasts and endlessly working on your strategic plan to gain freedom.


And your limiting beliefs will lead you to believe that this protective mechanism is the right thing to do because it’s safe.


So you plan. And plan. And plan.


You get yourself motivated.


And then you plan some more.


Always just one great plan or idea away from fulfillment and freedom.


But never quite getting there.


“Wait till next year.”


STOP.


Close your eyes.


Close your mouth.


Breathe slowly but deeply through your nostrils and in through your belly.


As you breathe in, think, “As I breathe in, I am in this present moment.”


As you breathe out, think, “As I breathe out, I let go into the present moment.”


Do that a few times.


Your breath is in the present moment. It’s not in the future. It’s not in the past.


Congratulations.


You just brought yourself into the NOW.


Now, ask yourself what you’re going to do RIGHT NOW to be joyful.


If that thought is clouded by your family member, co-worker, or boss who just triggered you…


Close your eyes.


Close your mouth.


Breathe slowly but deeply through your nostrils and in through your belly.


As you breathe in, think, “As I breathe in, I am joyful in this present moment.”


As you breathe out, think, “As I breathe out, I let go into the joy of this present moment.”


Do that a few times.


Congratulations.


You just brought yourself into the NOW.


Now, ask yourself what you’re going to do RIGHT NOW to be joyful.


You see, if you’re constantly worried about what you’re going to do NEXT instead of what you’re doing RIGHT NOW, you literally can never be present.


And lack of presence is the NUMBER ONE challenge I’ve heard from men who’ve opted to work me via my 1:1 coaching program.


Not present with themselves.


Not present with their wives.


Not present with their kids.


Instead…they’re in a virtual time machine. Next minute. Next week. Next year.

Monday’s call.


Last Friday’s meeting.


Anywhere but HERE and NOW.


Five Minutes


It’s no surprise that the toughest activity I’ve ever given my clients over the past five years is asking them to spend five minutes — JUST FIVE MINUTES — in silence as soon as they wake up in the morning.


Before they check screens.


Before they make the coffee.


Before they pray.


Before they converse with their family.


Five minutes of silence.


For some men, it’s painful.


For others, their limiting beliefs prevent them from even attempting it.


Think of this: It would be easier for me to ask men to get up at 4 a.m. and go to the gym for a hard workout than it is to ask them to sit in silence for five minutes in the morning.


And yet, these same men wonder why they can’t be fully present in their lives.


This isn’t a judgement. I’ve been there and done that, as well.


That five minutes of silence in the morning, if you choose to attempt it and make it a habit, will be the most important activity in which you engage each and every day.


(By the way, if you’re interested in having help with this activity, we start with the five minutes in our Mindful Month Decelerator and build from there to help you be mindful and present throughout the day).


Of course, you might also be thinking, “I’ll start waking up in silence next year…”


Wait Till NOW


Here’s the great news…


All those years you’ve been waiting till next year?


You can decide right NOW that all those years you were waiting for NOW.


For this moment.


Here.


Now.


Because in this very moment you can decide to be joyful.


In this very moment you can decide to be fulfilled.


In this very moment you can decide to let your inner freedom rise.


Believe it or not, it’s your choice.


It’s not your boss’ choice.


It’s not your politicians’ choice.


It’s not your family's choice.


It's not your friends' choice.


You’re either a sovereign human or you’re not.


And if you are, you realize that it’s your choice.


It’s your choice to be present. It’s your choice to make the most of this moment.


And if in this moment you decide that life’s too short and previous to spend this moment thinking or worrying about your job or your boss or you bank account or the run you might struggle through next week…


Then you’ve taken a big step.


Keep stepping.


And you keep stepping by then being aware of the limiting belief that rises up to tell you you’re not worthy or good enough to NOT worry about those external things.


You’re aware of that belief, but you don’t marinate in it.


You look at that belief. You look it in the eye. And then you smile.


You say to yourself, “I’m sorry for that limiting belief. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you.”


Repeat it.


To yourself.


You clear that belief, and then you take action in the now congruent with who you want to be right now.


This is it.


This is the key to that life of joy, fulfillment, and freedom you want.


It’s not be found in “wait till next year.”


It’s not be found in another week of planning.


It’s to be found right here.


Right now.


In this present moment.


And it’s your choice.


If you need help cultivating your presence and dissolving the limiting beliefs, anxiety, tension, and stress that are blocking your joy, fulfillment, and freedom, then please click here to book a call with me and let's chat.


You deserve to be present.


Let’s start right now.


 

Curt Mercadante helps driven men free themselves from the limiting beliefs and stress that block their joy, fulfillment, and freedom. Click here to get access to our FREE Freedom Lifestyle Audio Course.

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