Horses, Lizards and Hope: How I Got My Life Back

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By Guest Blogger Chase Chaldekas, Financial Advisor/College Unit Director Northwestern Mutual - Lakewood, CO

Going through the Unleash Your Practice® program was an experience I have been waiting for my whole life without even consciously knowing it until I learned about it at Annual Meeting this year.

2013 has been an difficult year. Between January and May, I endured $115k of premium reversals. In April, I lost a staff member of 3 years when she went through a miscarriage and left the practice. All along, I was learning how to support my fiancé as she was diagnosed with kidney disease. Needless to say, my outlook on life was being tested. To say the least, I was letting my "lizard" run my life without even knowing who my lizard was. Through Unleash Your Practice, I got to know my lizard (the fight or flight response) and was given simple tools and strategies to let go and be my authentic self in my practice. From tension relief exercises, to working with horses, to learning about soft power, we accomplished more in three days than most do in a week at Fastrack. I was able to learn more about myself and my study group members than I learned in years of Clientbuilder, study group calls, etc. Unleash Your Practice® forced me to look in the mirror and see who I had become while operating from a place of fear.

The ability to take time out of my practice to work on myself was an investment worth making. In just a week back into my practice, I’m receiving compliments from associates and joint work partners noticing a change in my demeanor. My anxiety levels have decreased and I feel equipped with tools to continue to achieve more with less effort. I feel more in touch with my body and am able to wake up with more energy and maintain a sense of calm throughout my day. Unleash Your Practice® has given me a renewed sense of purpose and confidence as we close out the calendar year and enter planning season for 2014. I am truly excited to see what results come as the year closes and know that both my practice and my clients are getting to see the real Chase. Better than this, I feel like I can truly be present outside of work with my fiancé rather than worrying about my business away from the office.

To conclude, I can’t wait to see how much my team accomplishes between now and the end of the year with this renewed sense of energy. Energy, not time, will determine how much is unleashed.