5 Key Life Lessons I Learned From My Father

By Carrie-Ann Baron Every summer when I go home to visit my parents; my mom always ends up saying that I need to explain to my dad what I do for a living.  He is a farmer and gets what it is like to be your own boss and how hard it can be to…

By Carrie-Ann Baron

Every summer when I go home to visit my parents; my mom always ends up saying that I need to explain to my dad what I do for a living.  He is a farmer and gets what it is like to be your own boss and how hard it can be to provide for yourself at times.  He worries about his oldest daughter.

In previous years, I delivered my elevator pitch, my results based tagline and explanation of my workshops.   He would nod and say OK, but are you sure you can make a living doing that?  I would assure him that I could but offered no details.

This year, my answer was different.

This year, I chose to share how I helped my clients rather than talking about the results they would see after working with me.   I shared some of the successes that my clients have had, and also some of the challenges that they ask for my help with.   He said so you ‘facilitate, consult and guide them through things when they need an ear to listen and someone to encourage them” I said YES!  I was so happy that he was able to ‘get’ what I do for a living.    And .. this year, I also chose to share that while I have 5 streams of revenue, business is slow right now because of summer.   This he understood .. ‘saying most people are busy enjoying the summer and spending time with family.. i respect that’.

This opened up a beautiful conversation between my parents and I.    We had a great exchange of ideas and it reminded me of how much of my upbringing has impacted my life (and business) in a very positive way.

Here are the 5 key life lessons I learned from my father:


  1. STOP THINKING ALL THE TIME – it is important to take time to ‘not think’ about business or work.  Find something that keeps your body busy but your mind alone.   His suggestions included going for a bike ride, weeding the garden, going for a long walk, doing cleaning around the house (mom likes to call this ‘puttering’) or anything else that keeps you moving but not over-analyzing the situation.    This really reminded me of what I help my clients do which is “BREAK FREE” from their limited self-beliefs or over-anxious thinking.  The classic ‘What if ‘ Rabbit hole we can so often fall into.


2. GET A PART-TIME JOB that nourishes you – at the local nursery or greenhouse.  Work to Work .. don’t Work to FIX.    The example he gave me “Say you get a job at the strawberry patch, and they want you to pick them all.  And then when you are done picking, they tell you to stomp on all the strawberries “Just do it! don’t question Why.”      Work to Work .. don’t work for any other reason in this job except to work and clear your mind.   To me, this is also another aspect of BREAKING FREE.


3. VOLUNTEER –  the only motivation is to help, it will warm your heart and make you feel good but don’t do it for any other reason except to help others … and yes, there is a balance to this… we talked about Service vs Sacrifice.   This topic came up after I shared with him that i do volunteer my time at various charitable organizations.  He said GOOD.  It is so important to do that, but there is a balance.  You still need to take care of yourself .. and make sure you aren’t giving so much away that you don’t have energy to provide for yourself.  He, himself, has a long career of volunteering which includes 20 years on the community ambulance service.  He shared with me that while it was for the right reasons, sometimes what needed to be done on the farm got delayed because he was on an emergency call.   I shared that I have a rule in my life/business, 80% of what I do is to provide for myself, the other 20% is what I call pro-bono work for charity’s (such as Ally Johnson, national rider in the Ride to End Poverty)   To be this speaks so strongly to the “GET CLEAR” phase of my work with private clients.   Understanding your Why? Your motivation and Intention of what you are choosing to do on a daily basis.      We both agreed (we agreed!) that setting aside 1 hour per week to go volunteer at the hospital, personal care home or a baby nursery would be a great way to volunteer but not over extend yourself.   Maybe these reasons came to our mind as we are caregiving to his mom (my grandmother) since her 90th birthday, 2 month ago.  Taking time out of your day to make another person smile, laugh or rest contently does the heart a world of good (it is a true WIN-WIN scenario)


4. MAKE THE BED EVERY MORNING – yes, this really seems like common sense, but for some, it takes effort.   He explained it to me like this (and I may be paraphrasing here) …. Every night before you go to bed, set the alarm and place it across the room.   When the alarm goes off in the morning, you need to get out of bed and turn it off.  After you have done that, you go back to bed and make it up. This is where I said “but the bed looks so comfy and warm” .. he smiled and said .. “get up and make the bed.  Start your day off right. Then go for a walk or have a shower, but don’t crawl back into bed!”    For me, this reminded me of the opportunities we have available to us, each and every day.  And how when we choose to respect our time and our bodies, we can really take ‘advantage’ of all that life has to offer us.   In other words, GETTING REAL with Life.


5.SET SIMPLE RULES FOR YOURSELF –  This is the best way to get real with life.   His recommendations were:  1) set the alarm for 8am   2) go for a walk every day before you start working on the computer  3) no computer work after 8pm   4) no phone after 9pm.   All reasonable rules that I can set for myself and honour.       I added 2 more rules to that   5) no checking emails on the phone   6) turn off all app notifications

Being accountable to yourself takes tenacity.  Being truthful about when you feel like you are hitting a wall takes tenacity.   Being willing to stop thinking takes tenacity.  Being willing to break free from the same thought patterns takes tenacity.

Being willing to get clear on why you do what you do takes tenacity.

It all starts with doing one thing different — hire me to help you be accountable, to find your balance, to listen when you need to talk.   Let me be your guide, your mentor and your cheerleader!  I know you can do it.  YOU ARE WORTHY!


Click this link to book your FREE 30 MINUTE PERSONAL BREAKTHROUGH SESSION (http://bit.ly/PERSONAL-BREAKTHROUGH-SESSION-FREE-30-MINUTE) to get you started on a journey to Get Clear and Get Real with LIFE!

CARRIE-ANN BARON, Mentor/Guide & Key Adviser, Tenacious Living Inc. Owner of Tenacious Living Network I www.tlrstation.com
3x Internationally Published Author | HQ: Calgary, Alberta | 403 818 6111 |www.tenaciousliving.org | www.choose-your-adventure.com

“Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

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