Recently I received the sort of telephone call we all hope we will never receive: “Ali, I am a paramedic. I am calling to let you know your husband has been in a car crash” The paramedic would not tell me how he was other than he was trapped in the car, a specialist medical response team was on the way and the fire brigade were working on getting him out.

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Lessons from a Wake Up Call

Design Life on your own termsRecently I received the sort of telephone call we all hope we will never receive:

“Ali, I am a paramedic. I am calling to let you know your husband has been in a car crash”

The paramedic would not tell me how he was other than he was trapped in the car, a specialist medical response team was on the way and the fire brigade were working on getting him out.

I can’t put into words how getting that sort of call feels.

At the time the call came in, I was hosting my monthly Self Employed Women Support Group. The group immediately stepped up to do what they could to support me and to get me to the hospital.

Because he was trapped in the car I arrived at the hospital well before him and it was over an hour before I actually got to see him and find out what state he was in.

The wait was hell.

The good news is that we were “lucky”. His injuries were not as bad as first thought. He had a number of broken ribs, breathing difficulties and extensive bruising. We are grateful it was no worse given how bad the smash was. He is now well on the way to a full recovery.

Wake up Call

It is easy to take your plans for life for granted and think you have plenty of time to make them happen. But the reality is that you don’t know when something will suddenly happen that will rob you of the opportunity to have the life you want with the people you want.

Mr D and I have been designing the life we really want since we escaped the corporate rat race 10 years ago. Our design life plans are based on our own definition of success and our core values.

Yet in the aftermath of the accident we realised we had become comfortable on our journey to the next stage of our ideal lifestyle. As a result we had started to play safe, take less of the actions that will take us to the next level of where we want to go. Progress had slowed down. Mediocrity was rearing it’s ugly head (I don’t do mediocrity!).

The Power of a Blank Piece of Paper

Once Mr D was well on the mend, I felt a real desire to go back to scratch and rethink everything. Accident aside, it feels like the perfect time to do it as this year is the 10th anniversay of escaping the corporate world.

So, the other day I got out a blank piece of paper. It has stayed blank for a good few days. Every time I have looked at it, it has stared back at me – blankly!

But it has started to become really powerful.

Powerful because every time I look at it, it has started to inspire me with new ideas and possibilities. It is really making me think long and hard about what “ideal” is in all areas of life moving forward. It is daring me to shoot for what I really want to do.  Clarity around the next phase of designing my ideal business and lifestyle with my husband & son has been kick started.

Yes, a blank piece of paper can be that powerful.

The mediocrity that had started to creep in is about to have it’s sorry ass kicked into touch.

I am sharing this personal experience with you to get you to think about what changes you need to make to have the life you really want. Don’t wait for a wake up call. They don’t always have the happy ending that ours did.

So, I invite you to ponder on this:

  • When was the last time you sat down with a blank piece of paper and dared to dream about your ideal business life and personal life?
  • If you started from scratch how would you want things to be in all areas of your life?
  • What needs to happen for you to start shooting for that?

The blank piece of paper represents just having the time and space to think so that you can make sure you are designing the life you really want.

What will you do to give yourself regular blank piece of paper moments?

 

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