Ep. 54 What does love mean to you?

what does love mean to you

In today’s episode, Anna looks at the second L, LOVE: relationships and romance, and helps you review where you are today and where you want to get to. What does love mean to you?

Fundamentally, we all want to love and be loved. Love can mean the affection we feel for a friend or a relative or the romantic love that we feel for a partner, and it can also mean a broader sense of belonging and community. Feeling and experiencing love is a huge part of life and support from others is crucial in enabling you to reach your biggest goals. Join us on this week’s podcast episode as we dive into the second ‘L’ of the Reimagining Success model, LOVE: relationships and romance

*Resources mentioned during the episode*

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Transcript:

Hello there, and welcome back to the Re-imagining Success podcast, and that is what we are doing now as we come to the end of 2019 and almost into 2020. A new year, a new decade. Lots of new possibilities, opportunities, and a great time of year to reflect on how far we’ve come this year. Maybe things haven’t gone so well and what we want to do differently next year.

So in the last couple of weeks, I’ve introduced, or perhaps re-introduced, the five L’s model that I created.

So if you’re new to the community, perhaps this is all new to you and otherwise, perhaps you’ve already been working on this over the last couple of years. But it’s a model that I call the five L’s model, a bit of alliteration: live love, learn, lead, laugh, and it’s a framework really intended just to prompt us. And I include myself in this because it’s very important for myself too as are all the tools and frameworks that I create and share with you. But really to encourage us to look beyond that narrow focus that we tend to have on achieving, pushing ourselves, setting goals, and specifically setting goals in the area of work, career, and very sort of conventional definition of success.

So two weeks ago we introduced or again revisited the model of five L’s. Last week we started with the first L, which was live, wellness and wellbeing. So the five, just to recap, are live wellness and wellbeing, love, relationships and romance. And that’s my friends is what we’re talking today. So let’s get all romantical. Learn in fact comes next. Learn is development and growth. Lead is career and impact, and laugh, quantum spontaneity, which is of course a good thing.

So we are talking love today.

Now again, I must caveat this, I am not a relationships guru or love coach or dating mastermind or any of those things. And in fact, importantly we’re not even just talking about love in the sense of romance, whether it’s same sex, different sex, whatever it might be. We’re really talking about love in a much broader sense.

Fundamentally we all want to be loved and to love other people. And again, love can really mean the affection we feel for a good friend, for a close friend and maybe that’s sort of our family or our loved one, a relative, the extended family. Maybe we have a really big, amazing, crazy family. Maybe it is the romantic love that we feel for a partner and it can also mean a broader sense of belonging and community. Now with my new role as a mother this year, I’ve experienced totally different level of love for my baby daughter. So, there are so many things this love can take form. It might be a pet. It might be in fact your job for goodness sake. But we’re talking more now about relationships in terms of people.

So let’s focus on that and let’s not get too carried away because don’t worry, we will still be talking about career and business and businesses and so on. But again, this broader sense of love, relationships and yes, a bit of romance because this is really a fundamental need for humankind. Let’s not get too carried away here, but if you think of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, you have the bottom, which is safety and security. In fact, before that, even comes the physiological needs. So water, air and so on. But let’s assume we have those. We have security, which in the context of career and business really is important. It includes having a salary, having that income, having a home and so on. And next, the next level is actually love and belonging. So that is friendship, intimacy, family, sense of connection. So again, it can be with friends, with a partner, with your child, with your sibling, with your broader community, with your colleagues and so on. So I really want you to consider this topic again in a really broad sense.

And again, before I even get into my little question prompts and some thoughts on this, I’d love for you to have a think about what this means to you.

What does love mean for you? Big question for you there. There you go. Take a moment maybe and pause the podcast and have a think about that. But what does this area of love and belonging mean for you? How important is it to you and how are you feeling about it right now? Just before we get into any sort of specific goal setting and so on. And by the way, goal setting in this area, I know is something that a lot of us find a bit strange, but I think in a couple of different contexts, this is critical.

Now in terms of relationships, let’s say we’re single. We want to meet someone. That is a really important goal and we can do all this work in terms of business and career and set goals and write books and podcasts and travel the world. But if fundamentally we’re really, really eager to meet someone to grow old with or to travel with, to have that partner in crime, perhaps if we can to start a family, if that’s what we want, if that’s almost more important than the particular business or career we’re pursuing, then that really needs to be front and centre and it needs to be part of our goals and needs to be parts of our plan and our strategy.

So from that personal context, it’s incredibly important to consider this area.

Now again from a business career perspective and in the context of potentially leaving behind our career and leaving behind a particular job where we have a lot of colleagues that perhaps have been actually incredible friends, that social life has been really important. Or conversely perhaps one that’s one of the reasons why you wanting to leave because it’s a toxic work culture, it’s very competitive, cutthroat and you have a really terrible boss and so on, that can really have a detrimental effect as well. So in the negative sense, it could be that your current work context is really pulling you down in this area or it could be that as you leave that behind, you need to sort of find a way to stay in touch with those people but also to forge new relationships.

And as you start working for yourself, and especially if you’re working from home as I do, working very much by yourself is great if you’re self-motivated and so on.

And I can happily work by myself quite a bit, but it can be very isolating. So making sure that we’re layering on those opportunities too. Connect with friends and family, of course, potentially a partner and so on, but also to create those new connections, whether online or offline with people who are doing similar things out there, running their own business, writing books, doing podcasts, living their best lives, travelling around the world and so on.

So this area again is really whether it’s wanting to meet someone or perhaps actually it’s the converse for you. Your relationship is not going well and your in the process of a terrible divorce, whatever it might be. This is of course something that’s going to have impact on all other areas as well. So it’s really something where you need to be thinking and feeling deeply around where you are today and where you want to get to. And again, I appreciate that it sounds strange to sort of have that goal of, “Where do I want to be next year in this area?” But bear with me. So hopefully we all agree that this is something important both from a foundational, fundamental sort of human needs perspective and then also more sort of mercenarily, if that’s a word, in terms of your business and your career as well.

So as we did last week with live with wellness and wellbeing, I want you to really consider where you are today.

And again, before I give you any prompts, maybe have a think about on a scale of one to 10 how happy am I feeling in this area? How do I feel I’m doing? So let’s say, and I’m painting a black picture here, I don’t have any friends. I feel alone. I don’t have a partner, all the things that perhaps might be important to you. I’ve lost touch with my family. I’m living alone on an Island in the middle of the Pacific, and I have no colleagues and I’m all alone in a hut. Then maybe I might be a one out of 10. Or perhaps I’m very much in touch with a really close knit group of friends. I have a vast network of incredible colleagues and peers who are in my sort of industry and doing these fantastic things. I’ve got a loving partner where I feel really fantastic in building a strong relationship. My child and I have a really close relationship and so on.

Now, of course I’m drawing an extreme. And to be honest, even that second scenario probably isn’t even a 10 out of 10 right? And we’re not aiming for a 10 out of 10 but just reflect again for you where are you on that scale in a sort of holistic sense. And it might be that in some of these areas, sub-areas, I guess you’re feeling really great and in others you’re not. As ever, Please don’t judge yourself here. This is about your own personal sense of where you are. It’s where you want to be.

Don’t let anyone else’s judgement  or opinion or what other people are doing in real life or what they’re projecting on social media, don’t let any of that influence how you feel.

This is really okay for you if that is an area that you want to change. But if you’re happy with all these things, being in a certain way that perhaps isn’t the conventional way. As with the career, that’s absolutely fine and that’s amazing for you. So again, this is very much your personal definition of success. Again, a strange way of talking about love and relationships, but out of 10 again, how are you feeling today?

So a few problems. And once again the caveat that these are just a few little things to think about and but just some prompts that perhaps you haven’t thought about. But first of all, do you have a good relationship with your family? And family can mean all hosts of things. Up to you what that means. Do you see your friends regularly? Do you make time for dates? So if you’re single, maybe it’s meeting new people, meeting or dating that new love interest that you have, or plural love interests, or it’s with your existing partner, whether you be married for one year or 20. Do you feel you have enough romance in your life? So again, whether you’re single or in a relationship, do you have enough romance? Because we all want a little bit of spark and red roses and chocolates and wining and dining, don’t we? Are you satisfied with your sex life? Really important piece there in terms of intimacy with your partner, if that is important to you.

Do you feel a sense of belonging where you are right now? So we’re going away from the romantic, the friendships, the immediate close network of sort of contacts and relationships and really thinking bigger picture. So perhaps you’re travelling, you’re a digital nomad, you’re by yourself around the world. Maybe you’re feeling a bit disconnected from the location. So do you feel a sense of belonging where you are right now? Do you enjoy collaborative, professional relationships?

So again, if you’re working for yourself by yourself, feeling isolated, do you have those relationships, whether online or offline with people who you respect, who support you, who can mentor you, who can really cheer you on and hold you accountable and so on? Do you have people to turn to when you need support? So it raised a point there. And then finally, if you’re in a relationship or if you are single, are you happy in that scenario? So there are always opportunities whether we’re in a longterm relationship or a recent one. Of course there’s always arguments and things. But overall are you happy with where you are? I guess whatever that there is. And the same with being single.

And then also if you have children, do you feel happy? I keep using the word happy. It feels a bit sort of flippant or shallow, but you know what I mean in terms of of satisfied. Do you feel fulfilled, whatever the word might be? But with the relationship you have with your children. Or perhaps if you still would like to have children and that’s not something you sort of admitted to yourself. Is that something that is something that you want to consider as well? So again, some questions there about your family, friends, dates, romance, sex, sense of belonging, collaborative, professional relationships, support, and then of course your relationship with your partner and possible children.

So again, we’re not looking for a 10 out of 10 here. We’re just thinking about these in terms of where are we today. Now if again, if it’s a four out of 10 you can think about why is it a four, why is it not a three, why is it not a five? And still recognise that, okay, I’m there objectively and no judgement . That’s fine. And then where do I want to be? Am I happy with this being deprioritized right now? Because you know what? I’m super excited about this new business idea. I really don’t have time to be dating and so on, and that limited time I do have available, I really want to pour into my business. That’s fine. Then put that to one side and we’re content.

However, if you feel like this is an area you’ve neglected either intentionally or more so unintentionally, maybe this is the opportunity to think actually this is an area that’s important to me and I would like to meet someone or improve my relationship with my partner or get back in touch with an old friend or have better relationship with my family, whatever it might be. In which case have a think about, okay, this time, next year, how much, how good do you want to feel about this area I guess? It’s hard to put a number of it again, but if you are a four and you’d rather want it to be like a six or a seven or if this is a massive value for you, relationships, family, community, then maybe that’s really a big opportunity for you to focus on this coming year.

So where is it you want to get to by next year in terms of these perhaps gaps you identified and then how are you going to get there? Start big picture in terms of some ideas and so on, but then really get specific. So again, it is difficult in this area but it’s not impossible to set specific actions and goals. We talked last week about rather than saying, “I want to get fit and I want to do more running or go to the gym” or whatever it might be, you really need to say, “Okay, on Monday morning before breakfast I am going to go for a 20 minute run.” for example. So we need to just get super specific in terms of where and when we’re going to do something.

The same in terms of relationships. So I’m going to call my mom every Sunday morning at 11 o’clock because that’s when she’s having her cup of tea with the newspaper and she’s free to talk to me for example. And hopefully you [Inaudible 00:13:45] talk to her. Or my partner and I are going to make sure that we have at least once a month a romantic date. Even though we have a newborn and when we maybe ask someone to take care of our baby and go out for dinner, or even just have a nice little dinner at home. Maybe we’d turn off the TV and have a proper one-to-one intimate chat with some candles, with some red wine. Getting super specific and of course talking to your partner about this as well.

If it’s your children, maybe have a chat as a family about, okay, what can we do differently?

It might be turning off phones, not having phones at the dinner table. It might be doing a fun family activity every Sunday afternoon or whatever it might be. So try to really think of specific things you can and want to do and make a note of those and really sort of plan them into your diary. Obviously we can’t get into the detail here. We’re going very big picture down to sort of executional detail of steps to take. But once again, this is intended to prompt you, to encourage you to think about these different areas, and if this is an area that feels a bit neglected for you, if you feel a longing, a sense of wanting more from this area, whatever dimension that might be, then maybe it is worth to reconsider, re-imagine success here as well, and really think about what actions you can take.

While we can’t magically create the dream person that we want to meet, or we can’t guarantee that we can have children, whatever that might be, what we can do is change the way we’re behaving, change how much we’re going out, how much we’re open to people. We can work on our mindset. We can really begin to consider at least put on the table this is what I want. And that then opens up looking at the way we’re living our lives at the moment. And are we actually opening up for opportunities to meet someone, for example?

So hope you enjoyed that love today. Love, relationships and romance. So we’ve done the two L’s. We’ve done live. We’ve done love. And next week we’re doing learn, a big passion of mine. Learning, lifelong learning, development, growing as a person, getting out of our comfort zone and learning new skills. So look forward to seeing you next week. Bye for now.

Connect with Anna:

www.onestepoutside.com

www.facebook.com/onestepoutside

www.instagram.com/annaselundberg

If you’re ready to start to reimagine what success could look like for you, here are some of the ways in which Anna can support you:

Get private mentoring for your business – Partnering with a business coach can help you see those blind spots and get both external accountability and expert guidance to take your business to where you want it to be. www.onestepoutside.com/freeconsultation

Get private career coaching – Individual coaching is fully tailored to your specific goals and desires so we can create the programme that works best for you, with the support that you need to move forwards. www.onestepoutside.com/claritycall

Grab a copy of Leaving the Corporate 9 to 5 – After interviewing 50 people who have left the corporate 9 to 5 to forge their own path, Anna has collected their stories in a book that will inspire you with the possibilities that are out there and reassure you that you’re not alone in looking for an alternative. www.leavingthecorporate9to5.com

Join the One Step Outside the 9 to 5 Business Incubator – This is your roadmap to transitioning from a corporate job into setting up a meaningful business that will bring you more freedom, flexibility and fulfilment outside of the corporate 9 to 5. www.onestepoutside.com/9to5

Level up with The Outsiders Business Accelerator – This is a mastermind for entrepreneurs, freelancers and small business owners who want to create a long-term sustainable brand and business. www.onestepoutside.com/accelerate

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