Contracts are all around us, whether we realize them are not.
We agree to pay X for Y (a car, a house, a cup of coffee). We agree to work for Z company in exchange for X salary.
The contracts that we are familiar with can be written or spoken agreements.
But long before you are old enough to enter into legally enforceable contracts, you were creating contracts that influenced every part of your life.
These contracts were unspoken and unwritten – yet so powerful.
I’m talking about the contracts that our minds create from early experiences.
They create our beliefs about ourselves and the world. Most of us are living our adult lives by disempowering contracts that we created as children.
I’ve recently discovered a disempowering contract that I lived by for a very long time:
Success is only earned through hard work, sweat, and tears.
I grew up truly believing that if I wanted something, I had to work long and hard in order to deserve it. I also believed that as soon as I reached or achieved one goal, I had to have another ready to replace it – so that I was always striving for something just out of reach.
As lawyer, every goal achieved was just a checkbox that meant it was time to move onto the next goal or task – because success is about never stopping to work hard.
Work wasn’t supposed to be fun.
That was my belief system, and so it was my reality.
My contract lead to heavy self-imposed deadlines and an endless list of things to do.
Where did I learn this in the first place?
I watched others work hard and sacrifice to succeed. And I was taught to always have goals and when you achieve a goal..there should be another one.
This type of contract based in really hard work does often bring success; it brought me a lot of success in my career as a lawyer. But it also made me unhappy and burned out and living without passion.
Once I reached that point of burnout, I ripped up that contract.
I listened to my truth and knew I needed to renegotiate the terms.
I decided to create a different type of contract; a sacred contract…One that served the truth of who I really am and what I want to experience. Something that would fuel my passion.
So here’s my new sacred contract:
Happiness is my natural state. I don’t have to “work hard” to be happy. I choose to be happy and I choose where I spend my energy. I choose to do the “work” I love. And if some part of that work is tedious (book keeping), I remind myself of how grateful I am to live my purpose, to feel alive in what I do. (The bookkeeping goes very quickly when I am in this state).
Through my work with energy coaching clients, I have seen some truly beautiful examples of how people have renegotiated their new sacred contracts.
Here are some examples of those:
Disempowering Contract: Life is happening to me and it always feel out of my control.
Sacred Contract: I co-create my experiences and sometimes I need challenges to help me really know my strengths.
Disempowering Contract: It is selfish to place my needs before others.
Sacred Contract: When I care for myself, then I am stronger to help others.
Disempowering Contract: In this role of mother, wife, partner…I have to be last because it is what is expected of me.
Sacred Contract: When I care and nurture myself, I am a role model for my children and family of how to nurture and care for themselves. When I care and nurture myself, I have more energy to be a better mother, wife, and partner.
Disempowering Contract: I will appear as weak if I let others know how I really feel.
Sacred Contract: I become stronger in my truth when I share what I really feel.
Disempowering Contract: I have to be perfect. I have to be #1 in all that I do to be worthy.
Sacred Contract: I accept all of me, the good and bad. I am perfectly imperfect.
What contracts are you living by that no longer serve you? Are they contracts that feel good?
Think about how you can turn your disempowering contract into a new sacred contract.
What contract would feel good for you to live by?
I hope this can inspire you to take this step to renegotiate what is no longer serving you. Please feel free to share your own sacred contract in the comments to inspire others!
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