this whole thing started with a book . . .
Have you ever had a life changing experience with a book? I am talking about a complete paradigm shift that has actually inspired you to take actions that changed the way you live your life.
The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks is that book for me!
Hi I’m Deb and you are witnessing my BIG Leap into my Stellar Life Project with this very first blog post! EEEK!
There are a ton of great ideas in The Big Leap that led me to this place where I am stepping out of my comfort zone and into the very public world of vlogs and blogs and I will share about those ideas in the next couple of posts. But the main question that led me to this moment of launching the Stellar Life Project was the BIG QUESTION: “How much time are you spending in your zone of genius?”
After a period of crisis where I wondered if I even had a zone of genius, I remembered what mine is.
We all have a zone of genius, something we are really good at and we light up when we are doing it. The thing is, we are so familiar with our “genius” that it is ordinary to us and we tend to undervalue it.
My genius is that I am a teacher. I am passionate about learning and when I have learned something new I am compelled to share it.
Before I tell you about the project, let me tell you a bit about myself.
I used to be the 2nd biggest self help book snob! I will leave the title of 1st biggest self help book snob to my best friend, Karen. Even though she’s starting to get over it now too. :)
I have a master’s degree in English Literature and for most of my life, I have had a disdain for the self help genre that was influenced largely by one of my academic heroes, Kenneth Burke. Burke was a 20c, rhetorician (someone who studied the use of persuasive language). In his book Language as Symbolic Action, Burke argues that self help books don't’ work because the mere reading of a self help book gives people the experience they are craving so they don’t need to take real concrete action. He was a pretty big snob about self help books too. But he also has some good points I will get into more in a future post.
I was an English teacher for 15 years before a minor car accident resulted in a major life change and I began my life as an entrepreneur almost 6 years ago now. Let me tell you, there is nothing like the entrepreneurial journey for really getting to know yourself, all your strengths and weaknesses and limiting beliefs. Gay Hendricks says the entrepreneurs journey is a spiritual journey and I would have to agree because it has certainly been a journey of increased self awareness, even enlightenment for me.
A lot of my increased self awareness and the new skills I have learned for dealing with my limiting beliefs (a phrase I wasn’t even aware of when I lived in the academic world) and fears has been a result of all the “self help” books I have read since I started my business. I have found ways to prove Burke (and myself) wrong. “Self help” books really can work. If we do!
I have developed strategies for implementing lasting changes in my life and the Stellar Life Project is both the outcome of those changes and a continuation of my life’s goal to always be learning and growing and inspiring others to do the same.
Yes, I am aware of the irony that the second biggest self help book snob is now writing a blog in the same genre!
My life’s motto is to “follow knowledge like a sinking star . . . be strong in will to strive, to seek to find and not to yield”. It is a line from the poem Ulysses by Alfred Lord Tennyson. There are hundreds of my former students who have that line written somewhere in their yearbooks. And I have an image of the metaphor tattooed on my wrist.
So, here I am taking my own BIG LEAP and launching the Stellar Life Project. Are you ready for a BIG LEAP too? If so, I hope you will join me on this journey as I share how you too can have a Stellar Life!
Now just in case you are at all like me and are thinking right about now:
“Oh gawd! Not another promise of a perfect life!”
let me explain how I named the project.
According to Hubble’s Law, more commonly known as the big bang theory, the universe is constantly expanding. I sincerely believe that in order for us to be in harmony with the universe, we too need to be expanding. And when we are expanding, we will by necessity be an inspiration to others. The Stellar Life Project is not about perfection or becoming someone else. It is about expanding into the the best version of who you already are!
The other reason the project name works for me is that my last name is Stellingwerff and my first business coach always called me Stellar when he was congratulating me on a win or encouraging me when I was deflated. There is power in words and telling yourself you are already stellar feels great. Try it! I bet you can't say it without smiling :)
So, the Stellar Life is not about perfection. In fact it is about learning to live with imperfection while expanding into the best version of ourselves and inspiring others to do the same!
My goal is to inspire as many people as possible to live their own Stellar Life Project so it would mean the world to me if you would subscribe to my channel and my blog and share with your friends. Your support will literally be my rocket fuel on this mission!
Thanks so much for reading, until next time, remember you are already STELLAR and the world is a better place when you are expanding to the best version of yourself!