I am a major work in progress.
We all are works in progress, and that's a good thing. Because even though I want everyone to feel beautiful, intelligent, and like a masterpiece in the flesh, I also want everyone to stay curious about self-development and personal growth. Even someone like me, who is trying to be influential in the world of lifestyle design, I will continually say, loud and clear, that I don't have it all figured out, either.
Just because I put some words together on a website doesn't mean I know it all. It may appear that way because I have some fancy accomplishments that I can point to on a resume or an advertisement, but those accomplishments are just moments in time. Life changes, and what I've done in the past may give me some credibility, but it doesn't mean I've transcended to the status of being some sort of authority figure.
That's why I never understood why people make such a big deal about the rich and famous. Sure, they may have some information that I'd like to know, but they aren't fairytale creatures. I'm not drooling over the opportunity to touch one of their body parts or thinking I'll get some magic fairy dust on me if I stand close enough. These people are humans, too. And to use a common expression in business, "they put their pants on the same way that you do." In other words, they don't have it all figured out either.
So, I never want to give the impression that I'm some dominant authority in the health, happiness, and wealth industries. I'm not. I'm just a dude who likes to think and write about those topics. Some people might like what I have to say about those things because it makes sense in their brains. But that's really all I have going for me. I'm not the fittest person I know, the happiest guy on the planet, or wealthy by any stretch of the imagination. However, I still know that I have something worth saying. Because even if I'm only one or two steps ahead of you in a certain area, that means I can at least teach you how to take the next one or two steps.
This is true for most so-called "authority" figures in our lives, too. Gurus, coaches, podcasters, your doctor, your parents, your spouse, or anyone else you look up to is probably just one or two steps ahead of you in life. Maybe some of those experts and doctors have fancy letters behind their names, but when it comes to life, REAL life, everyone is pretty much on the same playing field. I'm not saying you should reject their advice or lose respect for what they have to offer. Just recognize that they are on this journey, too. It doesn't take away from anything you have to learn from them (after all, being one or two steps ahead is enough to turn someone into a life coach), but maybe the concept that 'no one as it all figured out' will give you the confidence to start something that you've been putting off for a while. Maybe you lacked the confidence to teach, write, or record something because you didn't think you knew as much as the people you look up to (I know that's how I felt). But, if you remember that they don't have it all figured out, either, then you might realize that you can still make an impact even when you feel like you know nothing (like a regular John Snow).
I can guarantee you that someone can learn from you in some way. You just have to be willing to put yourself out there. Plus, you learn a lot from putting yourself out there, because you will inevitably make mistakes. And after you learn from those mistakes, you can impact even more people by sharing what you've learned. You keep figuring it out, getting gooder along the way, and then sharing your goodness with others.
We're all works in progress. And yet, most of us are just one or two pivotal steps away from being in the same position as the people we look up to the most. Keep learning from those people. Learn those next steps and how to take them. Then, just keep walking. See where it takes you. Sometimes you'll follow nicely in line with the people that walked the trail before you. Other times you'll go off-trail and get whipped in the shins a few times. But maybe you'll end up forging a new path that other people will want to follow. And even though you are only a couple of steps ahead of them, they will look to you as a leader.
While that may feel like a lot of pressure because you don't want to lead your group astray, you should still trudge on. People can go on a new path if they want to. They are responsible for their own decisions and you don't need to take on those burdens. Just keep pressing on and be honest with your people that you don't have all the answers. Basically, you don't have to have it all figured out to be a leader. You don't even have to have most of it figured out. You just need to go out there and have the courage to explore.
You don't have to have it all figured out to be a leader. You don't even have to have most of it figured out. You just need to go out there and have the courage to explore.
Even if you don't want to be a leader, don't be afraid to go slightly off-course and get whipped in the shins a few times. You can live a wonderful life by following a proven path to success, but you might find that there's a life that is even more ideal for you, and it's only a few steps in another direction.
That's what I'm doing with Getting Gooder. I'm forging a path that I hope will help you create the life that is specifically ideal for you. Because I don't want you to live a life that society has told you is the best, or safest, or coolest. I want your life to be completely up to you, informed only by what makes you the happiest. And I want you to have your ideal life right now. Better yet, I want you to have that ideal life right now while also building an even more amazing life for the future. I want you to have your cake, eat it now, and have even more cake later. It may seem impossible, but I'm figuring out, as we speak, that it IS possible.
You can live a wonderful life by following a proven path to success, but you might find that there's a life that is even more ideal for you, and it's only a few steps in another direction.
So, even though the trail map of my life is completely unfinished, I'm confidently forging ahead in an effort to help you make a better map. Sometimes you will trace my map exactly (because my idea of an ideal life aligns with yours), but I'm hoping that you will eventually design your own map. By taking a few steps off-trail and discovering the things that are better for you, you can draw a new line on your map. And if you forge forward on that path, you might find that others come with you. Heck, I'll probably even hop in line and see where it takes me. Because I don't have it all figured out, you don't have it all figured out, and neither did anyone who came before us. We are just out here trying to make better maps.
My only hope is that your map won't have as many errors, corrections, or dead ends as my map. A cleaner map is a sign that your life is authentically and intentionally designed for happiness above all else. A map like that is going to lead you to some pretty incredible places. And I can't wait for you to see them. So don't be afraid to press on, and don't be surprised when others want to follow.
See you on the trail!
Written by Parker Hewes, a chiropractor, author, American Ninja Warrior, and serial adventurer living in Salt Lake City, Utah. Parker believes learning and growing are the keys to living a full life. He started Getting Gooder to help others learn and grow, so they can create the happiest, healthiest, and wealthiest lives imaginable.
Parker also knows that our ideal life gets even better when we have others to share it with. So, keep following Parker and the Getting Gooder community as we build our ideal, together.