If there is one self help book I would unreservedly recommend for the general reader, it is Susan Jeffers’ “Feel The Fear and Do It Anyway” *. It’s short, it’s practical and it really challenges you to think in new ways about how you approach change. When I read it, it certainly had a lasting impact. One section of the book resonated with me in particular and that was the part about building healthy life foundations.
If you imagine a house perched on stilts; Imagine the house is resting on only two stilts place close together near the centre of its base. How safe do you think that house would be in a bad storm? Not terribly safe I would imagine, I certainly wouldn’t want to be inside! Now imagine adding extra supports to the house, maybe at its corners and all around the outer rim, maybe even some more dotted around for good measure. The house is much more secure right? It might withstand that storm afterall.
When we overly depend on one or two things in life to give us fulfilment, such as our job or our partner, if one of those ‘foundations’ were to fall, it could devastate us. We might not be able to withstand the ‘storm’. However, if our lives are rich and full with various outlets providing meaning, fun, connectedness and mental stimulation, we are much more likely to thrive when times are good and survive when times are tough.
Think about the different facets of your life? Do you have enough outlets? Are you over-reliant on certain things/people to give your life meaning? How could you branch out into new areas? What would add meaning and fulfilment to your life?
Having solid life foundations is crucial to ensure you have the resilience needed to weather any storm that life might throw at you.
*Jeffers, Susan (2007), Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway: How to Turn Your Fear and Indecision into Confidence and Action. London: Vermilion.