As I’m sure you know, I have big-ass-goals in my life and business. I’m under no illusion – they are my goals. Not letting my aspirations be at the mercy of help from anyone else is called being a fucking adult. My goals will succeed because I am 100% responsible for them.
Tune in this week to hear what independence really means to me and work out what it really looks like for you. You might be in a situation where you’re relying on the people around you and you don’t even know it. This is difficult for some people to hear, but if it’s hard for you to listen to, you probably need to hear it the most.
Welcome to Love Your Living, a podcast for ambitious women who choose to have it all. Learn how to achieve the massive success you’ve been dreaming of in your business and your personal life. Here’s your host, multiple six-figure business owner and a life stylist, Brooke Keeling.
Hey, everyone, and welcome to the Love Your Living podcast, where we get real in talking about growth and ambition and big goals and the reality of it. Today, I’m talking about a word; a word that has a lot of meaning to me. And that word is independence.
What does independence mean to you? Does it mean being able to support yourself? Does it mean getting out from underneath your parent’s wings physically and or financially? Does it mean financial independence, security, not always being stressed about money and or lack of money; how are you going to pay your rent or your monthly bills?
Does it mean independence within your career, not having to report to someone, not having someone else set your goals for you, tell you what to do? Does it mean independence from relying on your spouse to fulfill a certain aspect or need in your life?
Independence is a big word for me. It’s a strong word with a lot of meaning. It’s a driver of my life. Many of my goals have been set around independence of some sort; financial independence, independence within my career, my businesses, personal independence. So what does that exactly mean for me?
Well for me, independence for having to rely on anyone but myself, to live the life that I want to live. That’s the meaning of independence for me. Creating the life that I want to live, not counting on my family, not counting on my husband to financially support me, not relying on my daughter or spouse to make me happy or feel fulfilled, not relying on my mentors or coaches to fix me or find out what will make me successful, not relying on anyone but myself to create the life that I dream of.
It kind of goes hand in hand with accountability, right. So here’s the thing; if my husband left me tomorrow, I wouldn’t be stressed out about paying my bills or now all of my dreams will no longer be because he was a big aspect, a big part, of funding them or helping me achieve them. He is a big part of helping me achieve them. Of course, there would be emotions there, especially depending on the situation, but in general, I’m not relying on him to make my dreams happen.
What I wouldn’t be is scared to death of how I support myself or taking on a shitty job just to pay my bills. I’ve seen this so often and it’s sad. Women that give their lives to their families, maybe put up with things they don’t deserve, what anybody deserves, maybe they marry someone for the wrong reasons because they thought that that person would fulfill their dreams.
Easier to put the pressure on someone else, right? Or for the security or for the lifestyle or for keeping their families together, until they can’t, until they lose control, until they’re miserable or their spouse is miserable, then what? When Reese is gone for a weekend, my daughter, or when she moves out for college, of course I’ll be sad. Of course, I’ll long for the days where she was young and she sat in my lap and we snuggled and she was a baby, but I want to appreciate that phase of life rather than longing for her or going back in that time because she was what my happiness and self-worth were tied to.
I don’t ever want to depend on my kids to fulfill my happiness. That wouldn’t be fair to them. By knowing that I don’t have to rely on anyone to fulfill my dreams in my life, it gives me power. It gives me strength and courage and confidence. It gives me peace of mind. That whatever shakes out in life, it will be okay.
It allows me to let go of that expectation. It allows me to love for the right reasons. It also allows me to be the best version of myself so that I can show up at my best to serve others. I’m not scared of what may come of someone else’s actions because I know that someone else’s actions or decisions, emotions, are really not within my control.
And honestly, they don’t affect my life. I’m in charge. What this also does is it makes me push myself really hard, like really hard sometimes. I’m not saying, hey I have this goal or hey I want something, you need to make it happen. Gosh, it’s so easy to do that. I know that I’m the only one standing in my way. I know that I’m the only one that’s going to either make something happen or not make something happen. It makes me have this relentless accountability for myself and my goals because if I want something, it’s all on me. I have to be resourceful.
So even on the day to day, to give you a small example on the smallest level, I can get really pissed off if my husband doesn’t take the trash out, and I have – I do sometimes. Do I need him to take the trash out? No, I’m capable; perfectly capable of taking out the trash. Would I like him to? Yes. Is our life a partnership? Yes, yes, it is.
But when I let go of trying to control his actions and just do it, not rely on him for doing it, it’s just such a – it’s so different. It’s different than spending two hours watching and noting if he’s going to forget again and making a huge deal out of it. Which, you know what, sometimes I still do because accountability is a big fucking deal for me and you need to take accountability for yourself. You need to step up.
But for me, I don’t take blame on other people. Same thing with my work schedule. For example, I know what I need from a day to day in terms of support. I manage most of the schedules within my household and also within the business. So rather than getting pissy and trying to rely on certain things from my husband, because he also runs a business and our schedules are busy and then there’s room for conflict and miscommunication, I decided.
I decided, I’m going to get up early before anyone else. My alarm goes off at 4:30. I’ll have my nanny come an hour earlier. I’ll plan to have my days end every day at four o’clock and at four o’clock, I take responsibility of that schedule. I take responsibility. I go into mommy mode.
There’s no fighting about who needs to be home this day or that day or who’s doing more, I just figure it out. Just figure it out. Of course, in a marriage, like I said, there’s so much shared responsibility. And don’t get me wrong and don’t think that my husband gets off the hook because it’s quite opposite. I expect a lot from him and in terms of contribution he is more than willing to play and to contribute to our life. However, for all my ladies out there, the overall management of life and household and schedules usually falls on us and then we delegate it out, so it’s still a lot.
Now, this whole concept of being independent and not needing to rely on anyone for anything, that’s a real bitch for some people. It’s a real bitch for them to understand and an even bigger bitch for them to accept.
First of all, men, husbands, spouses, masculine energy, that person needs to feel needed. They need the feeling of feeling wanted and that they matter. This is where really strong feminine energy, or femininity with masculine energy within women can cause a little bit of a rift, especially for insecure men. They will control with money and power and when you no longer need that, boy, bye, right? Or at least they see it that way and they get very insecure.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my husband, but what I love about my husband is his love. It’s his support, his vision for life, his values, how he makes me laugh, his companionship, how incredible of a dad he is to our daughter, I look forward to adventures with him and growing old with him.
Does he make me happy? Yes, absolutely. Is my happiness and life goals dependent on him? Absolutely not, and that allows me to love deeper. I’m not loving out of lack of or longing for something that he will provide for me; it’s just love and life. True love.
I’ve also learned that when I separate my goals from our goals, like I have really big goals, as I’m sure some of you can imagine if you’ve listened and tuned into podcasts or checked up out on Instagram. I have really big goals and I hold myself at the highest tier of accountability. But when I expect my husband to play at that level all the time or when I expect him to be on board and be playing with me full-out at that level, that’s not him. That’s not his level.
So my goals are my goals, your goals are your goals. Alignment is great. We have our goals as well, but take accountability for your own shit and what you want. Don’t put that on the other person in the relationship. I can tell you firsthand that when you no longer need someone for survival – which there is a time in life where we all depend on someone for survival. Our kids, they need us to survive. They need our love or they’ll die.
My daughter, our future children, they will always have my love, always, but I also want them to learn this level of independence. I want them to feel free because that’s what this is. When you don’t have to depend on anyone anymore, there is such a massive sense of freedom; freedom to live your life on your own terms. But with that, my message to you, and also what I have to teach my kids, is that they have to learn independence.
They have to learn work-ethic, resourcefulness, accountability. I will not fund all their dreams. I will not solve all their problems. No one else is going to do that for them. If they want something, they need to work hard to get it. I will be more than capable to give them everything and anything that they want in life, but I sure hope that I stick with my own advice on this.
And don’t, because I know the power and the freedom that comes with this type of independence and you don’t learn that by getting everything gifted to you on a silver platter. I’ve also experienced this with my mentors and my coaches.
So one last example, I think this is a big one for anybody that has especially worked on themselves or wants something bigger and is seeking advice from an expert – that’s what we do, right? Seek and you shall find. So if you want something in life, if you have a big goal, you go out, you find out who’s doing it at the level that you want to play and you study them. You do what they do. You use them as your mentor and your guide.
But the problem is, we – and when I say we, I mean me as well – we show up, we pay the big fees and we want all the answers. We want them to tell us exactly what to do. We want them to answer all of our deepest desires. We want them to tell us what we need to do and how success is defined and all of this shit. We want it all and we want it tomorrow.
No, nope, nope, nope, nope, we get it when we get it, and I just recently got it. But you have to do the work first for you. You have to do the work first. You have to bring it to the table first. It’s within you. You’ve got to bring it out. And, of course, like always, this message is smacking me in the face lately, but I myself felt a little lost.
I needed someone – I felt like, at least, that I needed someone to figure it out. I thought, okay, how many people can I hire? Let’s get this shit done. Let’s put it together, but the reality was and is, I wasn’t clear enough for me. I had to go back, and I hate going back, and get clear. I had to do the work for myself and understand why and what was triggering me, what was holding me back and what that meant. No one else could give me those answers.
I didn’t need to be fixed. I know the way. I have the answers within. No one else is going to show me the way. I need to listen to my heart. And then you get those coaches and those mentors that help you put it all together, but you need to do the initial work first because they’re not going to make you. You have to make yourself.
Whatever obstacles you feel you have, whatever is holding you back or really making you struggle, your answer is through that obstacle, through that problem, so don’t ignore it. Talk about real independence, independent woman.
If you’re a Beyoncé lover like me, in her documentary, she takes us through this behind the scenes time of when she was stepping out and finding her own path in the music industry and doing things differently, following her heart, not listening to all the noise outside, separating from her father who was her manager up until five or six years ago, I think.
And she said, I don’t care if I sell a single record; it’s bigger than that. This is my independence. Beyoncé was crazy famous already at this time and successful, but she broke away from her group, she broke away from her father, she would not be the woman that she is today if she had not done that; the powerhouse, the creative genius that she is today without taking those risks, without listening to herself and her heart and thinking bigger and knowing, I need true independence.
She’s not relying on anybody but herself. So who do you depend on in your life? Is there an area of your life that you still have a lot of help with or that you depend on someone for, whether it’s a dream or financial or goals or lifestyle, whatever it is, business. Where can you look within and take charge in that area of your life?
It doesn’t mean that we don’t need love. It doesn’t mean that we don’t need support and guidance. It doesn’t mean that. it just means you’re taking 100% accountability. Your life and your goals do not depend on anybody else but yourself. You can stand on your own two feet and whatever shakes out, whatever happens in life, you know that you got this.
What does independence mean for you? I hope you all enjoyed the episode today. As always, thank you for tuning in. I love you all. I love your messages. I love the feedback. If you haven’t already and you wouldn’t mind taking a couple of minutes out of your day and rate the show,
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Thanks for showing up and listening to this week’s episode of Love Your Living. If you’re ready to create a business and life you love, or simply take your already pretty incredible life to the next level, head over to wordpress-248549-800663.cloudwaysapps.com/balance to download our five-step guide creating more balance in your life.