Live your best life yet!



Kylie Bartlett shares her core values and tips for making 2014 your best year yet…







The last few months of 2013 were an amazing roller coaster ride for me – so many things happened in such a short amount of time. The highlights? An unexpected phone call to say I was the recipient of an all-expenses ticket to the national Sustaining Women in Business Conference, and a close encounter with Princess Mary for the 40th Birthday Celebrations of the Opera House!

I also launched my own movement to inspire local women through workshops – which is chartering a path of personal risk taking for me.

Some of these events had me dealing with a classic case of ‘imposter syndrome’, where I was asking myself “How did I get here? How did this all happen to me?”, and igniting personal energy and the head space to design 2014 to be my best year yet!

Finding myself at The Sustaining Women in Business Conference felt as if fate landed in my lap – and the inspiring, informative and connecting content of the conference will stay me forever!

The conference had far too many highlights to pen here, but keynote Kieran Flanagan from the Impossible Institute discussing the importance of the ‘Human Quotient’ resonated with me. A perspective that suggests behind every statistic is a human story. According to Kieran if we are open to really listening to the human stories around us they have the potential to help us become the best version of ourselves. Not to mention the belief that building a culture of collaboration has the potential to beat individual talent every time.

Simon Sinek’s golden circle theory of always communicating with the ‘why’ first was another highlight. His notion of three concentric circles with ‘why’ in the centre, ‘what’ in the second circle and the ‘how’ in the outer circle demonstrate that it doesn’t matter what

you do or how you do it, you must first and foremost consider your ‘why’ – why you are doing what you are doing. Know your purpose first!

Talk about a serious dose of inspiration and quite frankly a good kick up the backside. I left the conference on such a high, ready to take on the world, ready to put into action some of my biggest visions! I just had to work out what my vision for the coming 12 months was!

If I was to really get serious about designing my best life yet – I needed to go back to outlining what I stand for. Taking strict instructions from the conference host and author of ‘Getting real about having it all’, Megan Dalla-Camina, I began to journal and play with the first task in her book – creating a life vision.

Megan opens the chapter with a provoking quote from Bob Marley “open your eyes, look within. Are you satisfied with the life you’re living?” She then adds a sharp question of her own – do you have a vision for your life? Megan suggests that a life plan is more than a career plan, it is ‘all about having a clear view of how everything in your life fits together…it’s about what your dream existence looks like… your aspirational picture’.

Despite some degrees of trepidation and a little discomfort, I felt as though Megan’s words were those of a good friend or mentor – not the kind of friend who tells you how wonderful you are all the time – but that person you love to hate! The person who challenges you, wants you to prosper by asking loaded questions – like where are you going? How are you going to get there? And watches over you in the process, holding you to your word and asking ‘how is that working for you?

I have a dear friend who over two years ago, on a yoga and art retreat I was co-facilitating – created her life vision in pictures. I recently learnt just how powerful creating that vision board had been. This friend was passionate about bringing more green into her life and family – it was a symbol for having wholesome abundance, eating homegrown and becoming more sustainable. Her board was filled with all clippings that represented these things and after the retreat she put it up on the refrigerator – so it could be a constant reminder. Just last week, she recounted how her daughter was looking at the picture and exclaimed ‘look mummy, you even have the bee’s from your vision board!’ Today, visiting her garden is like being teleported directly into her vision board – she keeps bee’s, aquaponics, chickens and so much more.

After quite some reflection I began working on my own life vision. It resulted in lists of things I must have in my life, the things that feed my creative soul, like constant inspiration, space to dream, create and time to be an explorer of the world. I even created a vision board of my own.

After a week of thinking and discussing the idea of creating a life vision with different people, I was hooked. I read on to the next chapter of Megan’s book – ‘knowing your values’. Another inspirational quote opens the chapter this time from Roy Disney – ‘it’s not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.’ I see values as the boundaries or non-negotiables of our lives. Most of us don’t actively explore our personal values or virtues until they come under fire – usually as loved ones or colleagues challenge them. I see writing down your top 10 values as an essential step to designing your best life yet.

On the outset of writing them down I thought a list of 10 would be most difficult, but as I began to really consider the beliefs, attitudes and behaviours that represent me or the person I want to be, it was easily exceeded. Below is a list of my values.

I challenge you, if you need a little focus for the coming year – try it out for yourself. I also challenge you to discuss your values with those important to you – and ask about theirs. You might be very surprised how your eyes will not only be open to what is within you- but you will be open to what is inside others too!

May 2014 be your best life yet!

Some of my Core Values

1. Believe in something bigger than me and use my voice for good rather than evil!

2. Question everything and teach my children to question everything too!

3. Eat local, shop local, buy local, share and celebrate local, live simply

4. Continue to dream big

5. Be mindful about how and what I fuel my body with

6. Seek out inspiration everyday

7. Create everyday

8. Read daily

9. Get high on intelligent conversations

10. Discover new places (even if they are in my own backyard)

11. Become a sponsor/mentor/rolemodel to others (to all humans!)

12. Say YES

13. Take risks

14. Practice ‘radical self love’

15. Celebrate ‘togetherness’

16. Choose freedom

“It’s not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.”