Disclaimer: it's not a solo adventure. What do I mean by 'resourcing' yourself? It's a term that's become more popular in the last few years in the trauma-informed space. The idea is that you need 'fuel' or 'resources' in order to care for yourself and for others. A common way of thinking about it is as a filling your cup or even putting the oxygen mask on first on airplanes. For the purposes of this article, I refer to resources as the usual three: places, experiences, and relationships. How does this connect to making your dreams come true, though? Internal and external 'resources' are what give you the stamina to follow through and show up. So, knowing what they are and how to cultivate them is essential to living into your truest and most beautiful life.
In fact, a key part of your self-leadership journey will require you to understand what your 'resources' are. First, you'll need to practice identifying what adds to your life, fuels your energy, maintains your stamina, nourishes your efforts, and amplifies your time. Second, you'll be able to identify what will have a similar effect on your family, teams, community, or business.
Through coaching, for example, you learn identify your internal and your external resources. 'Internal resources' often refer to what comes from within you, such as purpose, passion, and willingness to learn. 'External resources' refer to the supports you can access outside of yourself. For example, when it comes to relationships, external resources include connection with mentors, friends, family members, community leaders, therapists, coaches, healthcare professionals, sports teams, etc. Depending on the change, challenge, or opportunity you might be facing, accessing your 'resources' or even knowing what they are can feel like a marathon.
That's why, as per usual, the invitation is to start with noticing and then expanding on small, consistent efforts that add up over time. Here are 3 areas to consider, as well as unlocking questions to pair them with:
To identify places as 'internal' resources, ask: where might I breathe easier? When reconnecting with yourself and grounding, you might go to your favourite reading nook at home. Here, the recharge might come from finally lowering the volume in your mind long enough to hear what you truly need/want.
To identify places as 'external' resources, ask: where might I feel connected to something greater than myself? Maybe that looks like going to a place of worship for you, or a concert, or an art gallery. Here, the recharge may come from remembering you're not alone.
To identify relationships as 'internal' resources, ask: what part of me do I want to lead with? Chances are that you'll need more recharging when putting yourself out there. That also makes it likely that the parts of you that are overwhelmed might make you want to shut down. Identifying which part of you you want to lead with does not kick any other off the bus *and* it does determine which drives. The recharge here can come from remembering your Why in the midst of doubts and stress.
To identify relationships as 'external' resources, ask: how might I help the people in my life feel seen, heard, and understood? It's easy to hyper-focus on the 'you' of it all, which makes it easy to underestimate how much of a recharge can come from knowing that you can show up for your communities. Here, the recharge can come from deepening the connection with those who make your life brighter.
To identify experiences as 'internal' resources, ask: what activities/practices/rituals add to my capacity to deepen my connections with myself and others? A surprise to no one who regularly tunes into this blog, for me, it's Morning Pages and Artist Dates. Free-hand journaling regularly and then taking myself out on little adventures help me show up in ways that resonate with my values. Here, the recharge comes from feeling grounded and less like you're a floating human on a floating rock.
To identify experiences as 'external' resources, ask: what activities/practices/rituals help me deepen my connection with the communities I care about and with the world around me? That might look like playing on a sports team, being part of faith based organization, going to therapy, going to school, etc. Here, the recharge comes from taking action that creates greater depth to your human experience.
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