Welcome to my takeaway from episode 140, my conversation with Jan Ditchfield where we discussed how to build a legacy by leveraging your unique skills, talents, and accumulated expertise. Here is a recap of the three key discussion points from my conversation with Jan.
1️⃣ Uncover Your Unique Difference
2️⃣ Embrace the “boring” aspects of business
3️⃣ Legacy Fulfillment
Usually, on each takeaway episode, I land on one of the discussion points as my main takeaway. This time I do something a little different. These three discussion points inspire me to embellish on each of them because when you combine these three points, they make a powerful combination for anyone to consider.
Regarding uncovering your unique differences, in my observation some of us – and I have been guilty of this – don’t realize our unique differences. Sometimes, we just don’t see it. Everyone around us sees how we are uniquely different, how we are uniquely skilled and gifted, but sometimes we don’t see it ourselves.
This is why I’ve covered in previous episodes the importance of having one or more people in your life to help you understand your unique special gift that you should harness to make the world a little better. This can be a coach, a mentor, or a mastermind group. For some, it can be a spouse or partner. Whoever or however you get the benefit of other people to recognize your unique expertise and tell you that you have this unique talent, give yourself the gift of surrounding yourself with one or more people who can help you make this discovery.
If you already know your unique skill, gift, or expertise, are you leaning into it? This is the other key discussion point from my conversation with Jan Ditchfield on ep 140. Lean into your unique gift, provided that it excites you. If your unique talent is something that truly excites you, seek to channel your skills in your career, or a business, or in a volunteer role. Back in episode 122, David Goad made the point that it’s okay to have a lane where you earn your income, whether it’s your job or your business, and another lane where you serve in some capacity. If using your unique gift in a serving capacity is your preference, you do NOT have to apologize for this!
While the context of my conversation with Jan Ditchfield was about harnessing your expertise in your career, I think I can speak for Jan that if you prefer to harness your expertise in a serving capacity and that fulfills you, by all means, do that. It’s your fulfillment at stake. It’s your life!
Jan’s point – which I wholeheartedly embrace – is to seek legacy fulfillment. As Jan points out, I talk about seeking to be 80% fulfilled. What I mean by this is that we have five main pillars over 40. They are health, fitness, career, relationships, and legacy. Jan says that most of her clients, who are women entrepreneurs, are empty in the legacy bucket. I can understand why this may be so prevalent. Women often have multiple responsibilities inside and outside the home and too often, the legacy bucket doesn’t get much attention. If you are fulfilled in four out of the five buckets, you’re 80% fulfilled and you’re doing great!
What Jan and I are saying is to chase after the legacy fulfillment bucket. The legacy fulfillment bucket can be the most satisfying because inherently it is about impact. Your legacy fulfillment bucket is about how you are having an impact on a cause a community or certain people in your life.
This is why I asked Jan, what if someone wants to channel their expertise in a new corporate career, not as an entrepreneur as she focuses on with her women entrepreneur clients. Her answer to this question is about knowing your expertise and channeling your energy to leverage your expertise in whatever way it will fill your fulfillment bucket, and I agree 1000%.
Maybe you’ve heard me say that fulfillment is immutable. This means that fulfillment is permanent. When you experience fulfillment in some area of your life, nothing can take that away, not even a bad day or a bad week. Fulfillment is immutable!
Finally, the other key discussion point from my conversation with Jan Ditchfield on episode 140 is to embrace the messy middle of systems and processes. I encourage you to think of this both literally and metaphorically.
The literal understanding of this is to ensure that you’re not just focusing on the sexy part of your expertise. By sexy I mean what feels good. That could be recognition, accolades, getting paid well for your expertise, etc. The sexy part is all about enjoying the fruits of your expertise. The literal understanding means, ensuring you have systems and processes that allow you to do your expert thing efficiently and at scale. This requires taking the time to think through and plan the processes to enable you to do your expert thing over and over with great efficiency so that you’re not wasting time. Again, this is the literal understanding of embracing the messy middle.
The metaphorical aspect of the messy middle is that your expertise didn’t happen overnight. You put in the work, and the sacrifices, and overcame doubters and critics. If you give yourself permission to look at those as part of the messy middle, you can realize that the messy middle is essential to your fulfillment. I bet the hard work, the sacrifices, and overcoming doubters and critics have made you stronger, making you better. This is what the messy middle is for, to make you better. Embrace the messy middle!
My challenge to you is this…Do you know your unique skill, gift, talent, or expertise? If you do, are you leaning into it for legacy fulfillment? If you aren’t, do you have people in your life that can help you understand your unique gift so that you can lean into it? And, when you lean into it, are you willing to embrace the messy middle as necessary to make you better?
I want to thank Jan Ditchfield for sharing her unique gift with you and with me on episode 140. As Jan said, she is the only one out there openly talking about the importance of the boring stuff, the messy middle that we all need to have in place to be better and enjoy the fruits of our labor in whatever way that may be, as an entrepreneur, in a corporate career or in serving others.
Watch this episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@midlifefulfilled/
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