Who are you? Luke or Yoda?
by Heather Thatcher
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Helping others is really important to you.
That’s why you went into a service-based profession, right? You want to make a difference.
You do the same with your family and friends, always being there for them supporting them and helping them when they need it.
But working hard and giving a lot of yourself to others doesn’t mean that you’ll be happy.
In fact, it’s some of the worst advice you’ll receive because it’s just going to lead to disappointment and burnout.
I get it though!
You’ve been taught to think this way since you were a kid.
The students that received scholarships and rewards were hard working.
The team that won the championship put in lots of time training and practicing.
On the news you saw people being praised for helping others less fortunate than them.
But does every person who studies hard win that scholarship? No.
Does every team that works hard win the championship? No.
Does every person who gives generously of their time, energy, and compassion get recognition for their dedication and hard work? No.
So what is it then that makes those people achieve their goal?
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When you look at the successful people in your life, they all have one thing in common.
They go after what they want, despite their fears and uncertainty. They continue to trust in their ability to figure it out and make it happen.
Does your boss sit there and HOPE that you know what they need you to do? No. They come out and tell you, teach you what you need to know, and set expectations for what they need done to achieve the goals of the company!
Does that charity quietly go about their business helping people hoping to get financial support they need? No. They have marketing teams and fundraising events to get the word out about the awesome work they do.
Successful people are go-getters. They speak up for themselves in a confident, assertive way and they create the circumstances in their life that will ultimately lead to their desired goals.
If you want something for your life – it’s up to you to make it happen. You have to ask for what you want and actively look for opportunities.
I know this goes against what you’ve been taught because we’re often told growing up that your hard work, compassion and strong character will all speak for itself.
But my dear friend, if you want something – success, recognition, a promotion, a new job, more money, better health, a more positive support network or anything else you could possibly want for your life – you have to go out and either ask for it or get it yourself!
It is your life, and you create the opportunity for opportunities.
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You are the hero of your life. It’s time for you to step into that role.
My friend, everything that you need to be successful, to be loved, to be happy, to be supported and feel balanced is already within you.
You do not need anyone else to come in and rescue you.
Like all good heroes, you have the ability to draw on a massive store of internal strength and independence to win the day.
Don’t get me wrong; every hero in every blockbuster movie or best-selling novel has support. There are people that help them get back up when they’ve been knocked down. There are guides, like Yoda, that show them the way.
But these supportive roles don’t do it for them. They show them how.
You need to be Luke Skywalker, not Yoda.
Luke already had everything that he needed to take down the Death Star and become the Jedi Master that he was destined to become. All he needed was someone to show him how to access this inner strength and power.
That’s where Yoda came in.
All he did was show Luke what was possible and walked beside him along the journey, encouraging him along the way.
Luke didn’t need someone to destroy the Death Star for him, or be his bodyguard, or rescue him.
He needed someone to show him how he could do all of these things himself.
The story wouldn’t be the same with two Luke Skywalkers, and your story also doesn’t need another hero.
So you see, my friend, if you’re looking for your life to change and improve you need to look within – not for your knight in shining armour.
You are the hero.
Don’t let someone else take that role in your life. You’re not a supporting actress here.
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Step into your hero role
You have the ability to change or influence the majority of the circumstances in your life.
Yes, of course, there are things that we can’t change.
Our genetics, for example, are out of our ability to decide. But, we still have the ability to influence their impact on our life.
There is a science called epigenetics that talks about this, and Dr. George Bray has a great quote that sums it up. “Genes load the gun; the environment pulls the trigger.”
What he means by this is that our genes are there, waiting to be triggered to influence disease, health and our resiliency. They are always there, dormant just waiting for the right set of circumstances to trigger them.
So that means that I may have a gene that makes me more susceptible to type 2 diabetes. But, if I continue to eat healthily and exercise regularly, the environment in my body will never get to a point where that gene is triggered, and I become diabetic.
Stepping into your hero role is acknowledging that we have a lot of control over our lives and choosing to take control of those decisions that will influence us the most.
We can also look at stepping into our hero role in our relationships.
If you are waiting for your prince charming to come along, what kind of vibe are you sending out?
Are you saying that you will forgo your independence, your ability to support yourself and make your own decisions if someone else could come in, sweep you off your feet and do everything for you?
I can think of a bunch of times when I’ve been talking with a client about this, and they say “I just want someone who can do everything for me and I will never have to work again.”
But when we go more in-depth and talk about what that relationship will look like – the person has changed their mind EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.
This is your beautiful life. You are the hero of this life-story, so don’t voluntarily let someone else take that role away from you and lessen the impact that you can have on this world.
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Choose your supporting cast wisely.
Who are you inviting into your story?
Are the people that can influence your life the kind of people you want to model your life after?
Someone once told me to not accept advice from someone who was living a life that I didn’t want.
Take a moment right now to think of the other main characters in your story. Are they the kind of people you want in your corner?
Are they your Yoda?
When choosing the people you surround yourself with, it is vitally important that the majority of them are the kind of people who will push you and help you to develop your inner strength and knowing.
We all have our family, and often this comes with family members that we don’t get along with quite as well. It doesn’t mean that you want to get rid of them and get them out of your life, necessarily.
But what it may mean is that they aren’t in your group of Yoda’s, your support team, and so that means that maybe they aren’t told all of the intimate details of your life. Perhaps that means that you politely listen to their advice, and then let it go if it doesn’t align with what you want for your life.
You can choose who is in the supporting cast, and who are extras in your life.
Choose wisely in a way that supports your highest good.
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How to increase your self-reliance and inner strength
Now that you’re embracing the idea that you deserve to be the hero of your own story and no longer need rescuing, it’s time to talk about how to develop more inner strength and become more confident in relying on yourself.
We talk about this a lot, in the first pillar of the Ultimate Life Survival Guide, but the first step is awareness.
Create a note on your phone or start a journal that documents all of the times that you stepped fully into that hero role and overcame the obstacle in front of you.
Write down what the circumstances were, the emotions you experienced, what you did, how you felt about it, and how it turned out.
In doing this, you’re going to have PROOF that you had the strength that you needed.
This will strengthen your core belief that you are strong and capable of handling challenging situations without needing someone to come in and rescue you.
Sure, some of your “Yodas,” some of your friends and family may have been there to support you – but they didn’t do it for you.
Notice these moments of triumph so that when you start to doubt yourself, you can be reassured by all of these documented victories.
Writing them down is so important because our mind follows where our attention is focused, so if we’re so stuck on the problem and worried that we couldn’t do this ourselves, it’s tough to access those memories. But if you have them written down, you have some cold hard evidence that you’ve got this and can do it!
You are your own hero – own it.