Why I wrote No BS When's Life a Mess and why I created the accompanying course.
I was born a non-conformist. I didn't really make this connection until I was in my 20s. Up until then I thought I might just be messed up. But now I know this:
I could probably just end this right here. Because that quote above really says it all. I used to say, I wanted to help people find their place in this world. But the truth is more like: I want to help people CREATE their place in this world.
THE EARLY YEARS
When I was young, I asked "WHY" a lot. I wasn't asking to be difficult and I wasn't asking because I was an especially curious kid. I was asking because much of what I saw and experienced didn't make sense to me.
Too many things seemed silly, cruel or a huge waste of everyone's time. Oh, and boring. I was 5.
I was often told, "That's just the way things are." "That's just what people do." "That's how society is."
These comments felt like a rub to my soul. They felt small-minded. They felt wrong. As a kid (under 18), it's hard to live the life you're dreaming of. People like to stand in your way. Well-meaning parents, teachers and society at large like to keep people safe and following along nicely in the system. A system that exists to create followers and good employees. A system and a world that has little to nothing to do with developing the Extraordinary, Passion-filled, Inspiring, and Completely aligned human being you were born to be.
We ARE NOT here to live in cookie cutter homes or live cookie cutter lives.
Life is about passion, purpose, and adventure! It is about aligning with our truth (we were born with it) and discovering through this awesome adventure called LIFE...how to express it full out!
I believe with all my heart YOU HAVE A UNIQUE PURPOSE. It may have been conformed or programmed out of you or you may think it has, but it is in there. Trust me on that.
I got in trouble a lot. The more I tried to live what I wanted, the more it was denied. The more it was denied, the more I tried to do things to escape the pain and my life. Skipping school. Drinking too much. Leaving home. Getting into more trouble. It was a vicious downward spiral.
I survived high school and miraculously got into college. I excelled at college. Psychology major. Criminal Justice minor(hey, I had experience in both). Dean's list. Successful. Everyone was so proud of me. I had gotten my life together.
The truth. I was doing the exact damn thing. I was skipping class. I was drinking (yeah, probably too much) and I was living exactly what I wanted or at least I had the freedom to go after what I wanted. I could at least try to create and build it.
Without other peoples schedules, rules, judgements, punishments, and silly systems...I THRIVED. Nothing had changed except I was free. Hmmm...interesting, huh?
Sidenote: Man, I have such a soft spot for kids in high school (and younger) and college students. Mostly what we have been taught and are still being taught is BS. At best, it is so far off base to what will actually lead to a truly successful (meaningful!) life, I don't know whether to laugh or cry.
OK, yeah I do. CRY. And...do this work.
The Troubled (& in trouble). The Depressed. The Addicted.
I believe that 90% (probably higher) of folks who are suffering, in trouble, depressed, or fighting addiction are really suffering from oppressed and disconnected souls (their own). I also believe that these same people IF they can find an alternate path (or create one!) that is radically different from the one society touts, will THRIVE.
Not only will they thrive, they will become the Wayfinders.
The greater the pain in your life, the greater the gap exists between what you are currently living and your potential. Potential defined as your life purpose and your soul essence being expressed.
What we need to recognize is...just because the majority is doing it, doesn't mean it's good or right. Good Lord, when the majority is doing it, is the EXACT moment we should question it and choose another route. That is a fantastic operating principal to go by at the time of this writing (2017). We are shifting in consciousness, but you don't want or need to wait until everyone else catches up before YOU act.
So if you have suffered from addiction. If you have suffered from anxiety or depression. If you have been in trouble or just feel lost, I ask you to consider your soul's purpose.
:: Do you have a sense deep down you were meant for more?
:: Do you often feel you have some kind of calling even if it feels elusive?
:: Have you often felt you are different from most people? That you just don't seem to really fit in?
:: Have you wondered why you just can't be happy?
:: Do you long for adventure, creativity, meaning?
:: Do you crave depth, richness and an aliveness in life?
Yeah? Well...welcome home dear friend. We are kindred spirits. We are each other's peeps!
Big Hug. Big Kiss. High Five.
THE STORY GETS REALLY GOOD.
College :: Part 1. I'm free. I can live how I want. I can choose my classes. I can choose what time they are. I can choose if I go, if I don't. If I buy books, if I don't. I can go to the lake and swim on hot gorgeous "school" days. I can find work. I can make money. I can buy things. I have options and what feels like the first time in my life...unlimited, unrestricted POSSIBILITY.
OMG...what's not to love?
College :: Part 2. I have a degree! I graduated with a BS in Psychology. 'Cause really...I wanted to help people. You know "screwed up" people like me. Because remember...I didn't make all these wonderful connections that I've been sharing with you until much later.
At the time, I was kind of thinking right along side with all my loved ones...it's a miracle. Hollie Flynn did well in college! People are proud of Hollie Flynn. Hollie Flynn got it together.
I didn't know then, that being "me" for the first time in my life was the secret to my success.
A four year degree in Psych doesn't really open many doors. OK, let's be really honest here. A four year degree in pretty much any field doesn't really open many doors. (Psst...the old school American Dream is dead. It started dying in the 80s...but few seem to want to accept this...so the madness continues.)
So I had big dreams. I had a life plan. I knew exactly how I wanted to be living. Which is FREAKING FANTASTIC because honestly most people cannot tell you what they really want. I know this 'cause I ask everyone. It's kinda annoying.
Knowing what you want is half the battle. I won that battle pretty easily. I was born knowing. BUT. And it's a big but, I didn't know HOW to bring what I wanted to life. I couldn't seem to get jobs that weren't entry level sales jobs or administrative positions. So I pretty much chose to keep waiting tables because it paid more than entry level jobs and (big one!) gave me more freedom.
Side Note #1: Do you know who some of the most successful people are on the planet? Psychology majors. Psychology majors who have been bartenders or servers. I'll put my money on these peeps any day of the year.
Side Note #2: If you've ever wondered if we should work together, Take the Myers-Briggs Personality test. If you are an INFP or an ENFP...holy cow not only are we a great fit for work, we'll also Be Besties! Any combo w/ an "NF" in the middle--golden!
I was kind of struggling. I mean, things were definitely better than high school. But not having enough money was getting old and not doing work I loved was getting really old. And student loans were due. And my credit cards started adding up as were the number of W-2's (12 in one year was the record!) as I kept trying out new "better" jobs.
So... by accident I started reading stuff I never had been exposed to before. I had joined a multi-level marketing company (don't worry...my work now isn't MLM). The people I met were super positive, energetic and all had big dreams. I didn't stay in this endeavor long and I never made any money, but what I did get was far more valuable. I learned how to condition my mind for success. I learned that anyone who wants it can build success. I learned this from the folks I met, but more importantly an entirely new world was opened up to me from the books I started to read and the principles I started to put into action.
I ended up putting myself through an intensive self study program for 6 years. It was kind of like an MBA in positive psychology, wisdom of the ages, and high performance. I cracked the code.
ENTREPRENEURSHIP! (who'd a thunk it)
This "training" led me to open up my first fitness center at 26 yrs. old. I had been active & fit most of my life, but during my depressed high school years, I gained 40lbs. I lost it when I was 20 years old through putting my self through a fitness and nutrition program that I designed. It seemed at 26, I had it going on. Now, I must say, I now see a lot of successful young peeps these day. Especially in the online space, but in 1998 it was rare. Everyone wanted to know how I could open up fitness centers. The most popular question was if my degree was in Exercise Physiology? Everyone always wants to know your credentials. I wanted to say: Well, I use to be fat and now I'm not (#true story). Oh and I read a lot.
I ended up opening 3 fitness centers. They were pretty darn successful. Thriving memberships, awesome staff, healthy profits. Then the next favorite assumption and question became: Do you have business degree? And I was like..."Well...no. I was just willing to take a risk on my dreams rather than wondering the rest of my life, "What if?"... and oh, I read a lot.
After I reached all this success, I was able to step back, breathe, and analyze it more deeply. After all, this was the first time in my life that I felt really proud of me. Except maybe when I was in 6th grade and did 22 pull-ups. That was really cool. I mean I got the Incredible HULK award for goodness sake!
But anyhow, back to my success. I wasn't super proud just because I was running 3 successful businesses and making a lot of money. I was proud because my relationships (with everyone) improved. I was proud because I was in fantastic shape weight lifting and running marathons. But mostly, I was proud of myself because I was living my passions and purpose full out. I felt my power. I had options. I felt immense freedom.
**Books, I tell ya. Books. (And not the kind you'll read in school.)**
I started a couple more businesses in the Outdoor and Wellness Industries. I started living even more of my passions on a daily basis. I was in love with life And I was like, "Hell Yeah. You go girl!"
And then...remember that analyzing part. I started thinking about my journey and how I had gotten to this incredible place. I started to feel other less pleasant things. Anger. Frustration. Disbelief.
Because... from the time I entered kindergarten through 12th grade, I was pretty miserable. Suicidal at one point. And even though from 18-26 was MUCH better, I still worked my tail off, struggled financially, and tried a million different things to bring to life what I wanted. 21 years of confusion and work to crack the code.
Side note #4. This is NOT meant to be a tale of woe. I get it. My God I was fortunate enough to be born in America! I had good parents (and still do! Hi Mom and Dad!).
But that's exactly what fires me up.
1. In this country, there is no reason not live your passions, your purpose, your power. Your bliss. It shouldn't be so damn hard. But look around. Apparently it is. How many people do you personally know who are thriving in health, living their passions full out, and doing work that they love. It's rare.
2. Why, W-h-y Mama W-h-y aren't true success principles taught by our parents or in school. There is so much BS going on.
1. I know a fair amount people who are "successful." People who followed the traditional path...good grades, good college, good job. Maybe got married. Had a kid or two. Bought a house. You know followed the rules. I know many of the folks who followed society's plan who have outward success and inside emptiness. They aren't living rich lives. And they don't know anymore how to tap into who they really are. This isn't success.
2. I also know people who are dialed into what they want, who they are, what they love, and what their gifts are to this world. But they have no clue how to bring it to life. This is not success.
3. And I know people who are clueless in both of these areas. They are far removed from their life purpose and a life of purpose and have no idea what success principles are or how to put them to use in everyday life.
THIS PAINS ME. I mean like kick-in-the-gut pains me. It doesn't have to be this way.
So....that dear friend (if you are still with me! holy cow!) is why I do this work.
That's why I work with people to help them find their passions and purpose so they can design EVERYTHING in life based upon their essential TRUTH and navigate from THERE. Because when you navigate from THERE it will never fail you. Nothing matters more than knowing your essential truth or what I call Your E.P.I.C. Code.
That's why I write No BS Success books, especially for young people (even though they are for all people). We need tools. We do not need to suffer so much. That's why I design courses that are cut to the chase success classes, so people will know what really matters and what doesn't and how to put it all into practice in REAL life. And it's especially why I work with purpose driven souls who want more out of life.
YOU ARE ONE OF A KIND. If you are misfit (even if a closet one), a rebel (we'll find your cause), a non-conformist (hell yeah!), a troubled soul (I get ya'!)...
Well... Hot-Diggity-Dog. WELCOME. WELCOME. WELCOME home.
Chances are... you are a creative, a healer, a coach, an illuminator...even if you don't know it yet.