When asked, most people will say the best moment of their lives was when they got married, bought a house, or started a family—and they can easily rattle off a list of the worst moments.
But take away those traditional best moments and they struggle.
“Are you still as bold as you once were in your life?” asks Antonio Neves. “Today, you’re better equipped from a knowledge standpoint, but if you’re not bold, you’ll be disengaged and going through the motions.”
Neves offered the 125 attendees of the CUNA Young Professionals Conference in Madison, Wis., three steps to ensure they remain engaged and create the luck they need to experience the best moments of their lives:
1. Turn up the volume. During his career as a television reporter, Neves says his news director would watch tapes of potential job candidates with the volume muted.
He wanted to see if the candidates made him want to turn up the volume, Neves says. “People in your life are deciding if they want to turn the volume up on you or press the mute button.”
They’re making decisions based on how you present yourself, your body language, and energy. They’re making decisions based on “what shows up when you show up,” Neves says, or if the energy rises or falls when you enter a room.
Consider what you do when no one is watching. Do you put in the work to better yourself? Or do you stand by on the sidelines and phone it in?
“What we do when no one is watching will determine your success or failure in life,” he says.
Believe in yourself and take the first steps toward accomplishing your goals. Act on the ideas you have.
Don’t let constraints and limitations hold you back. Instead of focusing on what you don’t have, be creative and focus on what you do have to come up with a solution, Neves says.
2. Find the edge. Athletes get butterflies before the starting gun goes off prior to a big race, speakers feel their hands tremble before giving a presentation, and musicians feel their hearts beat faster before a performance. But people who stretch themselves should feel that on a daily basis.
“If we don’t feel that on a regular basis, we’re not growing or moving forward,” Neves says.
Fear and excitement are the same emotion, Neves says. What differentiates them is your perspective.
“Find the excitement you once had,” Neves says, “And think about what excitement would look like.”
3. Surround yourself with greatness. The people we interact with in our lives can fall into two categories, Neves says, thieves and allies.
Thieves are the people who don’t encourage you, don’t inspire you, don’t hold you accountable, and have drama-filled lives. When spending time with them, you often walk away with less energy than you arrived with.
Allies, however, are those who inspire you, challenge you, and test you. You walk away feeling fired up and energized.
“Think about the five people you spend the most time with,” Neves says. “Do they make you better? Or do they keep you standing still?”
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