13 - E-book - Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions

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Course 13
Harnessing the Power
of Your Ambitions
e-Book / Course Transcription
Author: Domonique Bertolucci
Course 13:
Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
Hello I’m Domonique Bertolucci. Welcome to the Your Best Life self-coaching
program.
Right now you are listening to Course 13 – Harnessing The Power Of Your Ambitions.
First lets talk about how to make the most of this course. Each course contains an
mp3 recording, like the one you are listening to now.
Each recording runs for about 60 minutes and is designed to feel just like a coaching
session. There will be times when I’m doing the talking, asking you questions and
sharing my insights, as well as plenty of time for you to be thinking and documenting
your responses. You might want to listen to this recording a couple of times,
perhaps the first time just to get a gist of it all, maybe even on your iPod, or whilst
driving the car.
Then listen to it in more details to work through all the exercises, and participate
fully. Finally, you might want to listen to it just one more time to make sure that
there isn’t anything you’ve missed.
Each course also comes with a full transcription of the recordings as an e-book, so
you can read through everything that was said. You will also receive a workbook, to
work through your answers from the recordings as well as any additional actions I’ve
set and a calendar to keep track of your progress.
Why not get a file so you can keep all your workbooks together. You will be amazed
to see how much progress you’ve made by the time you have finished all the courses
in the program.
So lets begin.
The topic is harnessing the power of your ambitions. But what is ambition. So often
when people speak about ambitions, they attach a negative connotation to it. They
see ambition as being something bad or something to be embarrassed about. They
tie it with words like ‘ruthless’. But ambition isn’t good or bad. Ambition is simply a
further strive for some type of achievement and distinguishment, and the willingness
to strive for its attainment.
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
You can see from that there’s nothing negative about ambition. The only thing that
can ever be negative about ambition is how you go about pursuing it.
For the purpose of this conversation, I want you to release yourself from any
preconceived ideas you might have about the word ambition and just think of it in
terms of an earnest drive for some sort of achievement, and that you’re willing to
strive for it attainment.
When I was researching for tonight’s call I was looking at how different dictionaries
defined ambition, I also came up with ‘a cherished desire’; a strong sense of desire
for success, and desire to eventually do or be something special.
So when you think of ambition in those terms, its starts to seem rather good to me.
What I want to talk about is how to harness the power of your ambition. How to
harness the power of your cherished desires of the achievements you have a strong
and earnest drive for, so that you too can eventually do or be something special. I
recently contributed to a current edition of the Secrets Exposed series. Secrets of
Great Success Coaches Exposed. One of the questions the publisher Dale Beaumont
asked me was whether or not I thought it was important to be ambitious for your
career. The response I gave him was that I believe it is important to be ambitious for
your whole life, not just your career. You should be ambitious for your relationships,
your health and wellbeing, for your sport and leisure time, for your holidays, your
financial future. You really should be ambitious for everything. Ambition is the desire
to do or be or have something special. Why shouldn’t you have something special in
every area of your life? After all, isn’t that what living your best life is all about?
Let’s start by thinking about your ambitions, and I want to begin by doing some
reflection. I want you to cast your mind back to childhood. What was your first
ambition? What was the first thing that you can remember ever wanting to be? Did
you want to be a Doctor or a Nurse or a Teacher? Was it something more outrageous
like a cowboy or a rock star? I wanted to be Wonder Woman that's the very first
thing I can remember wanting to be. What I want you to do is look back at your
childhood and ask yourself what did you want to be when you grew up. And the
second question I want you to ask yourself is what was it about that ambition that
appealed to you. What was the first thing that you wanted to be, and what was it
about that that appealed to you. I’ll give you a couple of minutes to reflect on that.
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
How was that trip down memory lane? Could you remember what you first wanted to
be? Did you remember a whole series of early dreams and ambitions, or was it really
hard to rack your mind back to a time when everything seemed possible and the
dreams you had for your future were big and bold, audacious? And the only thing
that could stop you from achieving them at that stage was just time. It was all about
‘when I grow up’.
The reason I ask people to go back to their earliest ambitions isn’t so then we can
define our success or failure in terms of whether we achieved that ambition or not.
Largely what we wanted to be when we were children is simply a tool, a reflective
exercise to start to look at what some of our early ambitions were and what those
ambitions mean to us; what insights they give us for our present life. And I know
some people think ‘When I was young I wanted to be an actress, and I’m not an
actress. So are you telling me I have failed, I haven’t achieved my ambition?
No not at all. After all as children we have very two-dimensional views of the world.
We don’t see the world in all its richness and glory. Ideas or aspirations we have for
our future as children, aren’t something that we need to evaluate our success as
adults on. But it could be really insightful.
What I want you to do now is just look back on that ambition you had when you
were a child and what it was about that ambition that appealed to you and see if you
can’t see any leaks from that ambition to your present life. I know when I asked
what a client did he said his first ambition was to be a pro-surfer. When he thought
about what it was about that ambition that appealed to him, it was because he was
being strong and free. And he would be able to spend his time in nature, with the
elements, and he saw himself as being powerful and surfing and how that would be
spending your time working with the elements. I’m sure that his childhood
vocabulary may not have explained it that way, that's how he reflected it as an adult.
And when I asked him to think about what was it about that idea that he could learn
from or how could he see the values demonstrating that idea being important or
relevant life, he said it was still very important for him to take time out with nature,
with the elements, whether he was hiking or skiing or riding a motorbike. And when
he didn’t spend time doing this, he started to feel a little shriveled and dry. He
started to feel like one of his needs wasn’t being met.
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
Although it wasn’t important to him as an adult to become a pro-surfer, and he didn’t
look back on his life and say ‘I never became a pro-surfer, I’m not the success I
could be’. What he could do was say ‘when I was young that was what appealed to
me about that goal, about that ambition. And you know what? Even in adulthood I
can still see why that idea appeals, and why it was important to me and why some of
the elements of that are still important to me to have in my life.’
What I’d like you to do is take a moment and return to your reflection on your early
childhood ambition and ask yourself what is it about that ambition that I can see is
still relevant or important to me in my adult life. It may be that you discover, like my
client, that there are several elements of that ambition that you’re currently having
and enjoying in your life. Or it may be that you haven’t travelled down this road for
so long that you’ve forgot that a particular idea was important or relevant to you.
The earliest thing I can remember wanting to be was Wonder woman. Clearly fighting
of villains’ with bulletproof bracelets isn’t a sensible idea for an adult woman. However
what I could see when I look back on my early ambition was that wonder woman was
strong. She was confident, powerful, she was gorgeous, and she was fabulous. And she
was making the world a better place. And I can see that those values are still really
important to me; the idea of being strong, being confident, helping to make the world a
better place and feeling a little bit fabulous while you do it. I also thought she wore
great boots, and I know great boots are still important to me today!
So think back to that early ambition and see if there are any insights it provides you
with for your current life.
Did you get some insights? Were you pleased or surprised to discover how much of
that childhood ambition is still relevant in your life? Or was it something more
confusing for you; did you find that none of it was relevant and actually the person
you were as a child has completely different ideas or aspirations as who you are as
an adult.
Again, I want to highlight what I said at the start of this exercise; it isn’t an
opportunity for you to judge your present based on what you wanted in the past. It’s
simply a useful tool, to look at what it was you used to desire and simply seeing if
there are any insights from that childhood ambition that could be relevant in your
adult life.
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
What I want to do now is bring things forward, take things to the present, and then
look for the year towards the future. I want you to think about your current
ambitions. I want to remind you that your ambitions don’t have to be about career.
People so often think of ambitions in terms of what they want for their career, and
then they think of that ambition in an entirely linear sense. But ambition doesn’t
have to be linear and it most certainly doesn’t have to be confined to your desires for
your professional life. I know when I think of my life I’m ambitious for my whole life,
I have wonderful ambitions for my relationships and for my family. For my health
and well-being, I have wonderful and powerful ambitions for my career and the way I
plan to stimulate my mind. But I also have exciting ambitions for my recreation time
and for the travel that I have planned for.
So I want you to think about the ambitions that you currently hold for your life and I
want you to make a few notes about what your ambitions are for your future. When
you think about doing or being or having something special, what do you think of? Or
to go back to that first definition; what is it you have an earnest drive for and one
that you’d be willing to strive for its attainment. And what would you be willing to
strive to attain?
Take a moment to think about your current ambitions, your ambitions you hold for
your future and your whole life and think about what those are.
Now that you’ve had a moment to think about the ambitions you have for your whole
life, what I want you to do for the purpose of this exercise is to choose just one life
area. What I’ll hope you’ll do in your own time after this call is work through this
exercise for the remaining areas of your life that you hold ambitions for. But for now I
just want you to choose one life area, and I want you to write down 8-10 points about
your ambition that explain why it appeals to you. What is your ambition, and what is it
about this ambition that’s special. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a list of all the
elements of your ambition, but I want you to provide some detail. I want to know
content an explanation or examination of why it contains that content. Why is it
important to you to have that in your future? What is it about that that appeals to you?
How will your life be different when you achieve that ambition? What is this ambition all
about?
I’m going to give you five minutes to think that through because I want you to come up
with at least ten points that explain your ambition in richer detail by getting to the
heart of what that ambition gives you or creates for you in your life. For example if all
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
you've written down so far is ‘my ambition is to lose weight’, I think you're going to
have a little bit more work around the detail about what your life will be like if you lost
that weight. Around what that will mean to you about how your life will be different,
why it is that that goal is important to you, why that ambition is something you would
be willing to strive for. You're going to have to come up with some rich and colourful
details that looks at your ambition in all its glory.
Have 5 minutes to think about what it is about your ambition that appeal to you, why
do those ambitions matter.
How did you go when it was time to think about your ambition and put some detail
behind it? Put some detail about what that ambition involves and why that ambition
appealed to you? Were you able to fill your ambition with rich detail? Were you able to
write eight or ten points quite easily, or was it a real challenge for you? Quite often we
think about our ambitions as a simple statement or phrase. But we don’t actually take
the time to look at what it is that we want in detail. Look at what it would involve. And
then we wonder why it’s so challenging to achieve that ambition. By getting to the
heart of your ambition by starting to have a look at what it really means to you to
have that in your life. What it really means to be or do or have something special in
your future, we can start to harness some of the power that will motivate us towards
doing whatever it takes to making this ambition a reality in our life.
I want to stay with this theme for a little bit longer and just start looking at our
current ambitions in more details.
If the life are that you chose to work on for the exercise you are finding challenging,
and you’d prefer to swap to another life area by all means do that. I’m hoping that as
part of your own personal review that you complete this exercise for every area of
your life so don’t be concerned if you need to move to a different area now to be able
to flesh it out in more detail for the purpose of this exercise.
What I want you to do now is answer two questions:
1. When I achieve this ambition, what will change about my life?
2. When I achieve this ambition, what will remain from my current life?
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
I want you to look at your ambition and look at both sides of the coin; how will
having this ambition change your life and how will your life stay the same regardless
of whether you achieve this ambition or not.
Take a moment to think about that.
Now you should start to have formed some greater clarity around your ambition,
around what it is that will change when you have that ambition in your life. But also
around what it is that will stay the same, what will remain when you have that
ambition in your life. So often what holds people back from achieving their ambition
is a lack of clarity about what will change. It’s a lack of detail around how their life
will be different for the better. But also another thing that holds people back is a fear
of giving things up from their currently life. A fear of what they may have to sacrifice
or compromise in order to achieve their ambition. And instead of exploring that and
asking the question ‘what will remain the same when I achieve this ambition and
what will change?’ people choose a state of inertia and don’t make any progress at
all instead of asking themselves some powerful questions.
The next question I want to ask you is about your values. Your values are the things
that matter most to you in life, the things that are of most value to you. No one
value is more valuable then the next. Everybody will have a different set of values
and through your life your values will evolve. Sometimes they will have changed
completely as your life enters a different stage. Certainly the values you may have
had when you were single could quite well be different than the values you hold
when you're in a committed relationship. I want you to look back on your ambition
and again I want you to ask yourself two questions:
1. When I achieve this ambition, which of my values will I be honouring?
So when you achieve the ambition you have for this life area that you're
currently working on. What are the things that matter most to you in life?
How many of the things that matter most to you in life will you be having in
your life simply by achieving this ambition? Which of your values will you be
honouring?
2. When I achieve this ambition, which values may be compromised? Which
values will be threatened? Which values may be in direct conflict with this
ambition?
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
So often we have a hunch that is achieving one of our ambitions, one of our
values may be compromised. Again instead of exploring that in more detail we
simply put the brakes on our ambition.
What I want you to do is not judge your values or judge your ambition, but to simply
ask yourself if I achieve this ambition in my life, which values will I be honouring.
And which of my life values will I be in conflict with or at risk of compromising. I’ll
give you a few minutes to think about that.
Are you clear of what your values are in the first place? Do you know what values
you’ll be honouring or meeting by achieving this ambition in your life? And do you
know what values are at risk at being compromised or in direct conflict in achieving
this ambition in your life?
If you found this exercise hard, and you're not clear on what your values are in the
first place perhaps you want to go back to Your Best Life and look at Chapter 2:
Understanding What Matters. There I go through a whole series of exercises to help
you work out what your values are.
Let’s move on. I want you to stay with this ambition and I want you to ask yourself if
you were to achieve this ambition in your life, which passion would you be serving?
What are you passionate about? What really puts a fire in your belly, or, makes your
heart sing or lights up your life. What are you passions? And how will your passion
be served by achieving this ambition?
If you ask yourself you find it challenging, what you might need to do is go back to
that ambition and again flesh it out in a little more detail. Perhaps your ambition is
too two dimensional, to see what passions were being served. Perhaps you haven’t
considered your passions in creating this ambition. What I want you to do is take a
few moments to think about your ambition and think about it in terms of passion.
What passion would you be serving if you achieve this ambition in your life?
Take a moment to think that through.
Are you clear on what passions you’d be serving if you achieved this ambition in your
life? What I want you to do next is go back and look at the questions you’ve just
answered about your ambitions. We started off by saying ‘what’s an ambition you
hold for a particular area of your life?’ And then we worked through it; what it is
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
about that ambition that appeals to you? What will you do, be or have when you
have that ambition. What was the detail behind that ambition?
The next question we looked at was how would having this ambition in your life
change your life. And how would having this ambition in your life keep your life the
same? We then looked at which values would honour and which values will we
compromise or would we potentially be in conflict with?
The final question, the one you’ve just worked through, was which passions would
you be serving if you achieved this ambition in your life?
Now through this exercise I’ve been using the terminology ‘IF’. Because I think so
often what happens is we identify an ambition and because we haven’t asked those
four really powerful questions, we don’t ever get to the power of that ambition and
the kernel of it, the part that really makes us drive towards achieving it. And that
may be because we still have some conflict around it. It may be because we have a
lack of clarity; it may be because we haven’t taken it to that next level of details and
thought. What I want you to do now for an exercise is go back to that first ambition
that you wrote down for your future, and review it based on what you've now
discovered in terms of what appeals to you, what would change, what would stay the
same, how it impacts your values and how it serves your passion, and I want you to
refine that ambition and I want you to write something down that isn’t about an ‘if’
ambition but is something that you are really willing to strive towards achieving.
Something you’re really clear would be a special thing to do, be or have in our life.
And something you know conclusively that if you achieved it, you would change
things in your life for the better. That it would completely appeal to you, honour your
values and serve your passion.
I want you to revisit your ambition and I want you to ensure that what you write
down what truly appeals to you, that you have a deep desire for that changes your
life for the better that honours your values and serves your passion.
I’m going to give you 5 minutes to do that, because this is the most important
exercise of the night.
How are your ambitions shaping up? Have you now crafted something that you would
truly move you towards achieving? Is it something that would feel really special to
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
do, be, or have in your life? Something you could commit to doing what it takes to
making a reality. Have you begun to harness the power of your ambition?
What I want to do to conclude is ask you the most challenging question of all. And
that is to ask you, now that you have this ambition before you that really appeals to
you and you have a deep desire for, which changes your life for the better and
honours your values and serves your passions. What’s getting in your way of
achieving it?
What right now gets in your way of achieving this? Perhaps it’s a fear, perhaps it’s a
logistic, and perhaps it’s a further lack of clarity. Perhaps it’s an intellectual obstacle
or perhaps a literal obstacle.
What I want you to do as your final exercise is to think about what is currently
getting in the way of you achieving this ambition in your life. I know you've only just
completing getting clear about what that ambition is, but right now right at the
outset, what are the risks to you actually achieving this. What are the things that
could get in the way of you achieving it - things that were already in your way?
Fear is a big one, clarity is a big one, and commitment is a big one.
I want you to have a think about the things that are getting in your way and I want
you to commit to doing something to overcome that obstacle. Think about three
things that place that ambition at risk, three things potentially getting in your way.
And for each of those things for you to identify what you can do right now to clear
that obstacle from your path so that achieving that ambition is something that really
is possible for you, and this ambition becomes your reality sooner rather than later.
Don't dwell too deeply about this; just write down the first three things that come to
your mind. For each of those three points I want you to write down what action
you're going to take to overcome that risk.
I’m going to give you three minutes, one minute for each point.
By now I hope that you have identified a really powerful ambition for your future, for
one area of your life. And I hope you going to complete these exercises for the
remaining areas of your life over the next month.
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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Course 13: Harnessing the Power of Your Ambitions
I truly hope that you've identified an ambition that you’re passionate about, that
serves your passion, that honours your values and that you have a deep desire to
achieve. Because it really does change your life for the better, and not only do I hope
that you have harnessed the power of that ambition, but by identifying straight up by
staring some obstacles or risks in the face and choosing some actions that will
mitigate those risks or overcome those obstacles, I hope that you also feel
empowered to achieve your ambition. That you feel the power of that ambition and
you feel empowered to achieve it.
Where to from here?
What I want you to do over the course of the next month is complete those questions
for the other remaining areas of your life that you hold ambitions for. And for each
one of those power ambitions, I want you to create an affirmation that supports and
inspired you to achieving that ambition.
I want you to identify the first three steps you need to take in order to make that
ambition a reality.
And the final step I’d like you to do, as homework is to look at the essence of this
ambition is, look at what the heart of this ambition is. And look at how you could get
a little bit of that ambition in your life right now.
That's all for the topic of harnessing the power of your ambitions, I hope that you
have identified the power that is within your ambitions and you feel empowered to
achieve those.
Don’t forget there are lots of other courses to help you to really live your best life, so
until next time take care and remember that real success is not about having it all,
its about having the things that matter.
© Domonique Bertolucci 2010 | domoniquebertolucci.com
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