I like to see people go for it. I hate to see people settle. It doesn't tend to make people happy in either their professional or personal life to do so. I encourage my counseling and coaching clients of all ages not to. There are key moments in each ofour lives where we need a gentle nudge to step up to becoming a better version of ourselves. Less complacent and comfy perhaps, but reaching and stretching out of our comfort zone. Don't give upon what you REALLY, REALLY want.

In our work life, I like people to go to work happy. I often ask my coaching clients how they feel each day when they are driving to work. Are you excited to get started, or do you dread getting there? Do you wish you could drive someplace else? Since most of us are going to be living longer, and working longer than our parents did, we really need to begin to think differently about work. More of us will have portfolio careers, with different chapters of our work life. It's almost never too late to retrain, rethink and regroup for another chapter.

If you aren't that crazy about your work, you are part of the majority. It's normal to not like your work, but why be normal? Many people kind of passively "fall" into something work-wise, rather than choose a goal and go for it. You my start by remembering what you liked to play when you were a child. You may want to get some career testing done to identify your strengths, career preferences, and help you consider what kind of work environment would be the best match for you.

Even Sigmund Freud felt that we all need two things in life: work and love. It's wonderful if you can invest in yourself enough to find work that uses your gifts and strengths. Now, how about going for it in your personal life?

I see too many people settling for mediocre marriages and love relationships. Life is too short. Step it up. Have an honest conversation with your partner about what you could do to be a better partner for them, and vice versa. Marriage is a lot like an empty box you need to fill with good things and experiences, not just unpack it, and be mad the box is empty. Don't settle for a mediocre relationship: instead, be a leader making things better.

When you are considering a life partner, make sure it is someone you find interesting enough to have as a forever dinner date. I think people know on a deep level if they are settling, or if they are with a partner who makes them come fully alive. It's helpful if you have chemistry, because I find it hard to help a couple create later if they never had it.

It's also important to choose a partner who shares your values, that you share some fun, companionate activities, and have similar life goals.Are they somebody who you can trust? Be yourself with? Do they inspire you to be your best? What is your positive influence on encouraging them?

How are you doing as a parent? If your children are school-age or older you can actually check with your child directly and ask them. Find out if you are giving them the support, time, and kinds of attention they need now. You can ask them the best ways to connect with them, and what you may be doing that annoys them. When do they feel closest to you? Never settle for being a mediocre parent when you are capable of doing better.

People settle for all kinds of reasons. Sometimes it's because it's easier and doesn't require leaving the comfort zone.We can be fearful of being alone, risking failure, or looking defeated to others. We may feel pressure directly or indirectly to please others. We may need more information.  Change can be hard or anxiety producing, but change is sometimes a necessary condition for growing. Ignoring boredom or the feeling of settling either at work or in your personal life can actually make you anxious or depressed.

Go for the brass ring in your life. Why would you settle for anything less? You'd be shortchanging yourself and others, and missing out on your own growth from REALLY going for it. Go with courage towards your dreams.

"We are the ones we have been waiting for."
---Hopi Indian Elders' Prophecy

"Be yourself; no base imitator of another, but your best self. There is something which you can do better than another. Listen to the inward voice and bravely obey that. Do the things at which you are great."
----Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it."
 -----Mother Teresa