It’s quite the popular word, this freedom. Even though there's a dictionary definition, each of us has our own interpretation of what freedom means to us, and it can mean something totally different at various points in our lives and personal areas within our lives.
Freedom doesn't have to be traveling the world or exploring new places, flexibility with your schedule or being without responsibilities, it could be any of those, but it could also be creating a healthier relationship with your body, honoring your priorities and saying NO to things that don't light you up and/or leaving a job that doesn't serve you.
Here's the unglamorous dictionary definition:
Freedom (noun) from Dictionary.com:
1. the state of being free or at liberty rather than in confinement or under physical restraint
2. exemption from external control, interference, regulation, etc.
3. the power to determine action without restraint.
4. political or national independence.
5. personal liberty, as opposed to bondage or slavery
6. exemption from the presence of anything specified
7. the absence of or release from ties, obligations, etc.
Does this blanket definition resonate with you?
Does it light you up?
If you're asking me, that would be a big N-O.
Honestly, I love the word freedom but of all of these explanations/definitions, none fully resonate with me; freedom looks totally different in each area of my life. I shared one of my personal journeys to freedom here.
You know what? It’s okay that it doesn't fit.
Not everything in life is going to fit or work for you.
I’m not a rule follower. (Rules feel restrictive.)
I don’t like to follow a plan. (I'm an unplanned go with the flow lady.)
I don’t like to be told what to do or what to believe. (I like to follow my heart.)
Even though I love words and the meanings of different words, the dictionary and I are not best friends. I like to create my own meanings for pretty much anything and everything.
The same is true for FREEDOM.
As with anything in life, it’s empowering to have the power to choose, create and define what you desire, need and how you feel. Agree?
If you're looking to create more freedom, I've shared five steps to help get you started below. Please note that this is your journey, so focus within to your own personal desires, not what you feel others expect from you. (Like really, release others' expectations before doing this - that's freeing in itself right there.)
Five Steps to Create More Freedom in Your Life
1. Define What FREEDOM Means to YOU.
Seriously, if you want to create a life you love, it’s important for you to be clear and specific on what freedom looks like, feels like and how it shows up for you in ALL areas of your life. Your interpretation is what matters. I use the word "definition", but truly what I mean by that is for you to create your own personal, unique interpretation for yourself in your little bubble. (Ya know, that bubble that keeps you from worrying about what others think.)
You can simply write out what freedom is to you or you can break it down into different life categories and get specific on what freedom looks like or feels like to you in each of those areas. Then, ask yourself "WHY do I want freedom in this area of my life?"
Some areas to include may be: Self Love, Relationships, Lifestyle, Career/Business, Financial, Healthy Eating, Physical Body, Emotional, Home Environment, Creativity, Spirituality, to name a few.
For example, FREEDOM could be:
Leaving a job that isn't serving you...
Releasing a relationship that isn't lighting you up...
Starting your own business...
Learning to love yourself more...
Creating a healthier relationship with food, your body, exercise, etc...
Traveling solo or exploring new places...
Trying something new and unique in your life...
>>>Insert yours here.<<<
What does freedom look and feel like to you +
WHY do you want freedom in that area?
2. Start Small.
Where can you create more of what you desire in a small way right now?
It doesn’t have to be a huge change, in fact, small gradual changes practiced with consistency are easier to stick with and can create more long-term positive lifestyle changes.
Example: If freedom includes creating more time for meditation to calm that busy mind of yours, is there something you would like to do starting with just 5 minutes a day? Start there and start small.
If that feels good once you get started, you can increase that time or dig deeper into something else. You don't need to start with a one or two hour meditation practice every day. Move smoothly and slowly into making positive changes that help you feel more free.
3. Give Yourself Permission.
This sounds obvious, you want to create the change, you're rearing to go and move forward on this freedom path! Isn't that permission enough? Not really. If you don’t consciously give yourself permission, sometimes subconsciously you can hold yourself back.
Example: I work with a lot of women who want to create a business. When I ask if they have set aside time to create “business office hours” in their current life, I often get a lot of excuses. I genuinely know they want to do this, but guilt sets in. BUT, those that don’t end up setting aside time usually haven’t give themselves permission.
NOTE: I did NOT say ask for permission. I stated "Give yourself permission." There's a BIG difference.
Giving yourself permission (along with a strong WHY for creating a change) is another way to commit to having more "freedom" in your life.
Write this down:
I give myself permission to: _________________
Now, say it out loud.
Seriously, do it.
How did that feel?
If you're waiting for permission, give it to yourself. If you want permission from me, permission is granted.
(Truth is, you always have permission to do what you love.)
4. Take Inspired Action in One Area.
Look at all of the areas where you desire freedom in your life. Which one would feel the best to start with OR which one do you feel will help move everything else you desire forward?
Once you choose one (I honestly prefer people to choose only ONE to start with), give yourself permission, create small goals aligned with this area then determine what inspired actions you can take on a daily or weekly basis.
Example: If you want to create a healthier relationship with food (you could call it food freedom) you could take inspired action and create time for weekly meal prep on Sundays. This will create space to prepare your healthy nourishing food and your mind for the week. From there, you can take healthy eating one day at time while keeping a food/mood journal and recording how you feel before, during and after each meal.
5. Check In With Yourself.
When creating “freedom” in any area of life, it’s important to check in with yourself and circle back to your “definition” of freedom in that specific area to see if it still aligns. It’s easy to lose focus of your desires and how you want to feel when you start taking action. Old habits, mindsets, and beliefs can kick in and sometimes take you away from what you truly desire.
Make it a healthy habit to check in weekly with your chosen feeling and inspired action plan.
Example: I've worked with women who want to make a certain salary in their business or career. They become so focused on creating what they feel would be financial freedom in their lives, while creating a workaholic stress filled pattern and at the same time straying from their healthy lifestyle habits and feeling out of balance, restricted and stressed out. That’s not freedom if it’s taking away your health and lifestyle habits and creating more of what you don't desire. Frequent check-ins can help with this.
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Will you follow these steps OR read them and leave them?
General guidance on creating freedom in your life pairs well with inspired action. If you're craving freedom or simply a positive change in your life, take some action!
If you're looking for guidance in a specific area and want additional help, please feel free to set up a time to meet with me and we can hash through your desires and create some inspired action steps. You can message me here or sign up to chat here.
What are some areas where you would like to create more “freedom”?
What does freedom look and feel like in that area of your life?
Please share below.