Personal Mastery – Getting Grounded and Into Your FLOW
The topics we discussed are outlined within this edition. FLOW is the ultimate state of creativity and state of being, which is who you really are. Few people achieve this 100% of the time, but many of us can recognize it and bring it into our lives with regularity. It all begins with getting grounded…
Flow and Groundedness
The ultimate goal in life is to live in a state of Flow. Your Flow is the natural state you are born into. It is a state of being (not doing) that allows you to be yourself, effortlessly and emotionally secure and confident. Everything feels natural.
We have all experienced Flow. Just think of the times in your life when you were so immersed in something (or nothing!) that you lost track of time, didn’t feel hungry, maybe even forgot who you were or where you were. It’s an almost dream-like state where no problem seems too big and relationships come to you naturally. Your Flow is unique to you – no one else has it.
In order to attain your Flow, we must begin with Groundedness (a made-up word). Groundedness is the great feeling of being secure, which in turn gives you a solid base and allows you to become balanced. You have the solid platform you need to grow and to re-discover the special person you were born to be. Being well-grounded stabilizes your emotions and your mind. It gives you freedom to create your future and opens things up for you and makes everything possible.
99% of all people, if they were really honest, hold back on getting better. They don’t realize that Flow even exists. Sometimes they only think they are getting better. Only the top 1% go for it (potentially even less than that). The excuses of the 99%+ are endless. The stalling is perpetual. If you are serious about truly improving your life, the first step is to commit to this work. Yes, I said work, because that’s what it takes. That’s all it takes. It doesn’t take any special gifts, degrees or experience. The work creates new habits and once new habits are created, the work transforms into play and that’s when the magic happens!
Remember: “Successful people do the things that others are unwilling to do”. It’s also called doing the work and making 100% commitment to your future self. Do you wake up in the morning and go home at night just following the same old comfortable routines OR do you break the mold and do the things to make you better with what matters to you in the long term? Can you commit to this and NEVER take a day off. Can you persist in a winning effort and be patient enough to reach the stage where suddenly it all becomes easy and it transitions from work into play and you live in FLOW!!!
Here’s what it does NOT require:
- A really high IQ
- Special gifts no one else has
- Fancy college degrees
- Long years of “experience”
- Who you know
- Good looks
- The right employer
- Someone else’s approval
- A fancy title
- A big salary
- A successful blog
- Lots of social media friends and “likes”
The good news! These are the only skills you need:
- Belief in yourself
- Desire to find your Flow
- Openness to change
- Along with a great dose of planning, preparation and time management!
Great news – these are all free and 100% up to you and no one else. There are simply choices you make. It’s all in your grasp.
It’s Up To You
YOU create your own Groundedness. No one else can do it for you. It’s your platform for growth. It’s the roots of your tree that make you strong.
There is a LOT to do in these assignments, but that is the WORK. But, that’s all it takes. Are you fully committed to yourself? Are you satisfied with the way things are, or would it be great if things in your life got easier? More fun? More rewarding? More meaningful?
Some Foundational Practices You Can Do Right Away
Practice 1 – Being present to myself and to others.
1) For myself – practice calming meditations by focusing on your breathing and your heart. Get out of your self-analytical head and into your center. 2) With others – practice the focused two-person conversation exercise we did in person. Reminder – one person brings up a subject they are interested in sharing. The other responds by asking at least three questions before adding their own comments. See how long you can do this. Notice if you get further engaged in the other person’s thoughts to the point that expressing your POV diminishes.
Assignment: Incorporate these right away and notice the positive changes.
Practice 2 – What can I surrender (let go of) that I believe now that is really just made up?
What can I surrender (let go of) that I believe in now that is really just made up? The stories we tell ourselves are an invented construct from the past. The stories are all self-limiting, even the “good” ones. They are all just made up. They are not your reality. They are simply a construct in your mind. You have convinced yourself about these things to justify who you are. This is called the egoic mind. The egoic mind lives inside your head and builds a shield between you and your true self. Your true self cannot escape because the egoic mind has taken over. This is the single factor that prevents people from changing. People believe they cannot change who they are. Who you think you are is your personality.
Most people actually don’t want to change their personalities because they have built a shield that protects themselves against things that could go wrong if they change. The perceived risk of change is far greater than the perceived upside, so they stay in their comfortable current egoic body. If you are unwilling to change, then you are not going to have access to new possibilities. Can you stop believing in what you think and open yourself to new possibilities? Can you be brave enough to let some things go?
The Practice: Write these down in your private workspace and commit to stick with it.
Practice 3 – My uniqueness.
My uniqueness. What is unique and special about me? What are my strengths? My special talents? What do I know or what have I experienced that affects how I see the world? How I engage with others? What do I do to make the world better? How can I improve on these and bring them out of me and really shine?
Assignment: Make a list and confirm it with others. See if the list grows over the next 30 days.
Practice 4 – Recalling my Flow.
Recalling my Flow. This is when time and space seem suspended, and you enter the energy field that allows you to be in your FLOW. These are the experiences you’ve had when you lose track of where you are, time itself and forget the egoic self you have created.
Assignment: Think of times when you have been in your Flow and recall what you were doing, where you were, how you felt, the emotions that came up for you. Spend some time with this and add to the list over several days. Focus on both what you were doing and how you felt. See if there is a pattern. If there is a pattern, is this repeatable and how so? In any case, do some meditation with slow centering breaths remembering the feeling of this flow in mind.
Practice 5 – Who is the future me?
What do you want to have accomplished in the next five years? Will you have reinvented yourself to become a different and better person that you would like to be?
There are two assignments here: One is to write an article about yourself in 5 years describing what kind of person you will become, what you will have accomplished, what path you will be on and what will others be thinking when your name comes up? THE OTHER is to write a letter to your future self, letting her/him know you are coming to meet them, but you might be unrecognizable and tell them why this is happening. There is only one rule with this – be specific and definitive. No vagueness and no hedging such as: “maybe I will commit to do the work, and hopefully follow the practices and I might become X or Y”. Save this in a secure place and recall it once a year. (January or your birthday are great times for this!)
“Until one is committed, there is always hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness.”
“Concerning all acts of initiative and creation, there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too.”
“All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising to one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance which no one could have dreamed would come one’s way.”
“Whatever you can dream you can begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”
– Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe, late 1700’s
Charlie Horn, the GA Founder, has experienced several transformations in his life and continues a journey of new possibilities as he approaches his eighth decade on earth.
After flunking out of college after only three semesters and taking a job repairing termite damage in household basements and crawl spaces, as an 18-year-old, he took night school classes and qualified to re-enter the University. He was also re-admitted to the college golf team and later became Captain of the team and set a career scoring record that stood for 35 years. While still in school he made a living selling cemetery lots. Upon graduation, he entered the life insurance business and immediately earned many production awards and in five years became a CLU, the industry’s highest designation. After three years he established his own agency, then two years later sold it and took a position as an executive at an insurance company where at the age of 28 with no prior experience or management training, he became the youngest officer of an insurance company in the U.S. Eight years later, after creating numerous innovative insurance products, and realizing his future potential could only be achieved as an entrepreneur, he co-founded two new insurance businesses with a partner. Two years later, not satisfied with the status quo, he sold his interest in one business and acquired the other business, and moved his young family to Arizona to seek his next business venture. In 1994 he founded an innovative new company called ScriptSave that disrupted and transformed the way retail pharmacies engaged with their cash-paying customers. Never before had a legitimate RX discount program been established, much less sold on a nationwide basis. The result of this was an entire industry was born. Charlie, with no CEO experience, led the company to achieve five consecutive Inc 500 designations, one of only a small handful to do so. He also co-founded a technology company in Denver, Colorado called HealthTrans which also was a two-time Inc 500 winner before it was sold to a large PBM. In 2012 Charlie, with no experience in higher education, founded the Entrepreneurship education program at the University of Delaware, his alma mater. Horn Entrepreneurship has become a model for other entrepreneurship programs and is already ranked in the top 10% nationally and its high school program is recognized as the preeminent global leader and in 2020 launched a groundbreaking new high school Entre-Ed offerings in the U.S. market called EntreX Labs.
In 2014, Charlie once again ventured into uncharted territory by founding 5Lights, a boutique investment and management company to support highly promising new and early-stage ventures. One investment example is Dr. Martha Hall Designs, a company that commercializes revolutionary patented products in the medical device industry.
Genius Avenue was born as an offshoot of Ternian Insurance Group, a company he held a majority interest in until he sold the insurance side of Ternian to Axis Insurance in 2013. GA was the in-house tech platform that performed the administration for Ternian’s voluntary products. Today, after several iterations, the platform continues to evolve to meet the demands of the market. Charlie’s vision for GA is to develop an organizational innovative mindset where anything is possible. The business model is to identify under-served markets and deliver a compelling new value proposition that can scale like a flywheel. GA’s team has pioneered several new concepts including Breakroom Benefits and Peppermint 401-k, digital storefronts, and new digital payments technology offerings. These innovations are led and supported by an outstanding team that is creating a very bright future for the company and for themselves.
Connect with Charlie on LinkedIn