suc·cess: (n.) The achievement of something desired, planned, or attempted

Freedom In Starting Over

The story that is being used to illustrate the concepts of a lesson in life excavation and renewal is inspired by actual events. As a writer one of my greatest thrills is spinning life into what I hope will be original creations that inform you.

The following story is shaped by bits I’ve seen and heard and then translated through the filters of my mind and imagination. However, this article is inspired by the kind of situations that shaped the expansion of my consulting into the realm of personal coaching.

I encourage you to look for bits of your story in here because that’s an opportunity to see yourself in a new mirror. Read on and learn.

Let’s imagine a thirty-year-old stay home mother of two. On her birthday the phone rang.

“Hello, my name is Ray G... You don’t know me, but your husband has been having an affair with my wife.”

Her husband had spent so much money in strip clubs and long distance affairs that they were seriously in debt. Literally on the verge of being homeless, with too many bills already well past due. But neither of them was doing anything about it. They both continued to party separately, alternating to ensure childcare arrangements.

One day her husband of seven years just walked out, but not until they had both pursued adultery as the solution to their relationship problems. When his infidelity was discovered she retaliated with her own and he left their family with no money.

All it appeared she had were two children with their belongings, closets full of toys, fashionable clothes, a growing shoe collection, a decent book collection (primarily romance novels and instructional writing books/magazines), as well as a desktop monitor, computer and printer. We’ll call this woman Trina.

She’s about to start a new life. Before she's able to really grapple with that her situation goes from seperated to divorced. Her work experience wasn’t the kind of stuff she wanted listed on her resume, aside from a couple of retail jobs.

We had a couple of meetings in which she talked about being ready to get on with her life. She talked about getting it together and doing something fulfilling and productive.

She said she wanted to be a writer and eventually an editor. I imagined that she dreamed of the day she would produce a novel, and get a book deal. She mentioned on a few occasions that she thought it’d be cool to work for a publishing house or start her own.

Perfectly legitimate ambitions, but what had she overlooked?

She overlooked the fact that she had yet to develop the discipline to write daily or even weekly. And the fact remained that no one, not even her, yet knew if she could write.

While it is definitely good to know where you want to go, a flexible plan to get there is, at least, equally valuable. Her simple plan needed to include a strategy to address the challenges to achieving her goals. In fact, it needed to accurately assess where she was in that moment of her life.

One of the first culprits identified to be sabotaging her creation of a more fulfilling life was the amount of energy and focus she gave to relationships that did not serve her.

Not only did Trina immerse herself in a social group that did not support self-improvement, but also one based on misery loves company. Her romantic entanglements had not fared much better.

She had begun immediately dating the gentlemen she had been seeing while she was still married. Since he was still in his other relationship their romance was short lived and promptly followed by another ill suited match. When she finally got involved with someone with real potential as a supportive loving partner, she cheated on him. Of course, the “nice guy” was the one that helped her get back on her feet. So how does she repay him? She gets pregnant by someone else.

Because her focus was not on supporting herself, but escaping with her boyfriends, she was unable to support and focus on her kids. This gave her ex-husband leverage when he remarried and the custody issue reared its head.

Even without full time responsibility for her children she maintained her preoccupation with doomed relationships. I got an email from her saying she had been intending to read the material I sent, but she didn’t have time to think too much about it.

Trina insisted she didn’t know what to do, so her new car was repossessed, she lost her job, and had to live with her mother.

If this were you, what would you do next to turn your life around?

First Things First

Define The Problem: Trina’s first concern was how to support herself. She wanted to be a writer, but what can she do that will earn immediate money and still nourish her dream?

"Believe it can be done. When you believe something can be done, really believe, your mind will find the ways to do it. Believing a solution paves the way to solution."
-- Dr. David Schwartz

She took another retail job and I encouraged her to start an online business on a part time basis.

“You need the experience of being in charge of your own business. Accepting full responsibility for your affairs. Plus an online business offers a lot of advantages over a traditional store front operation. Chiefly, the low overhead cost means you can keep it going longer before you have to turn a profit or be forced out of business. That boils down to a better chance of making it, if you are determined,” I explained.

This meant her social life would have to be dramatically cut back. She assured me she was ready to make a change and embrace success and independence. Trina confessed that she had been battling depression and that partying was all she had to make her feel good.

“But how does where you are at this moment that make you feel about yourself?” I asked.

She didn’t answer.

I explained how she could use some books I was offering to begin working on her writing skills and developing a strategy to integrate her grand ambition. It was as if I were the first person to point her towards self-study resource guides, product reviews, articles, marketing education materials, e-courses, e-books, and resourceful e-zines to learn what she needed to know to be successful.

“I can’t afford all that!” she exclaimed.

“First, how much did you spend going out or shopping over the past few weeks?” I asked. "Secondly," I continued,"alot of help is available without cost, but you can't expect to get everything for free. Look at how much you spend in pursuit of a good time."

She paused. “Ok, I see your point.”

Do you want success enough to perhaps temporarily cut back your wardrobe budget? Only you know when you’ve had enough and if you keep doing the same thing absolutely nothing will change.

It too another year of struggling before she came back ready to apply herself to working with me and doing the work that only she could do. The questions I posed to her have become an excellent assessment tool. I encourage you to start here if you're on your own path of personal improvement based on personal empowerment and relationship managment.

What Next?

1. Assess how you’ve used your time thus far?

2. How long have you invested in futile efforts and relationships while avoiding the real causes of your problems?

3. Are you happy with your results?

4. Are ready to choose your Ultimate Success instead?

Yvette Dubel is the founder of and creator of Simple Plan Systemİ featuring Clarity Relationship Valuation software. Dubel also has over ten years experience as a consultant and personal coach. Request information about online events by email (

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Attracting Success