4. Quality Check!

Your awareness should be expanded and a picture should be clearer in your mind as to what you would like to be moving towards. You should be clearer on what you must do. Actually, no more should. It must become clear to you what you MUST DO to create the change that you want.

You must develop a strong understanding of what you are presently doing and how that shows up in your life. Don’t over complicate it. Grab a napkin and a pen and make it a daily practice of checking in on what you are doing and how that impacts your life. Adding your own doodles certainly makes it more fun!

You should also have an understanding of what serves you and will support you in your life and with what you are trying to accomplish. Be super-duper clear on what doesn’t too. Lastly, you should have an understanding of some tools, behaviours, habits, and actions that are going to help you start moving from where you are towards where you want to be. This is important as action creates movement. Movement will change your life.

You might be thinking this is wonderful . . . but what do I actually do with all of this information? If you are, I’ve got you covered right after this little story that I love to share.

So, I have lots of creative interests but one that I am the most passionate about is cooking. I love it all. Even the dishes that come with it. They are simply part of the process. I also know a little secret that a good Chef is a clean Chef (so many good lessons in the culinary world!). If you don’t want to spend your time cleaning . . then don’t make a mess. There is a wonderful life lesson there 🙂

Back to cooking. For me, it starts with selecting quality ingredients, exploring the options for how to piece them together to make a complete dish and choosing the tools and techniques that best support the transformation of the ingredients. The goal is harmony – everything from texture to flavour, seasoning to aesthetic must align otherwise you have a few items sharing space on the same plate. Without the harmony, it’s just food on a plate. Yawn.

Now I love cooking enough that I disrupted my career to study at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and that is certainly another fun story that I’ll have to share with you over a café allongé some day. The point of me sharing my culinary adventure is that I am fanatical about the quality of ingredients. You may have noticed this. In the kitchen this is paramount as the quality of ingredients inform the quality of what we can create. I know you can see where this is going – the same is exactly true in our lives.

The quality of the ingredients we have informs the quality of what we can create.

I believe this is the moment in the episode where Emeril would shout BAM!

Now when I refer to ingredients in this context, I mean essentially everything in our lives. Absolutely Everything!

Where we are, what we do, how we do it, who we interact with, who we learn from, our thoughts, the environment and everything in it that we consume. The totality of all of these ingredients is our life. We are influenced by it all and it informs what we do and who we are.

Stated another way, our life is a reflection of our choices, actions and environments. What we fill our life with is incredibly important and I’ve cooked up a little video here that speaks to this idea more.

It’s easy for us to agree that our choices, actions and environments have a tremendous impact on where we are and what we are experiencing but this isn’t enough. Yes, it’s a wonderful first step and it moves us towards being more present and aware of the ingredients in our lives but it’s still not enough.

We must have context and we must have clarity on how our choices, actions and environments impact our life.

Do they support us and help us move, forward and build momentum? Or do they get in our way, creating obstacles and limiting what would otherwise be possible?

The answers to these questions set the foundation for everything that follows.

I encourage you take a few moments for yourself – download the worksheet, explore and be curious about truly serves and supports you and what creates obstacles and get’s in the way of what we want. These important insights will help set a framework for the next section.