At the end of every year I like to capture the learnings. The life-changing realisations I do not want to forget. 10 Lessons from 2022; here we go:

1. Ego-driven goals will waste your life away.

We often waste our lives pursuing goals that we think will boost our self-esteem instead of pursuing what is meaningful and joyful.

This was such an important breakthrough for me this year that I chose to speak about it in my TEDx talk: “Do your goals prevent your success?”

Filtering out ego-driven goals and focusing on joy-driven goals improves the quality of our lives immeasurably.

2. You do not need to be committed to your vision; you just need to be committed to being in flow.

I always had a vision about the future, which helped me attract a lot of opportunities. Vision can be a wonderful tool, as long as it remains flexible.

I realized this year, that if you commit to an ideal future too rigidly, it can lead you ashtray.

The north star should not be our vision about the future, but being in flow in the now. That is the best way to both enjoy the present and end up somewhere amazing.

The activities that keep us in flow change often, so we need to stay tuned in.

I redesigned my VisionPath program this year, to focus less on creating a picture of your ideal future and more about seeing who you are and what you would like to do right now.

As a result, many of the participants reported starting living their vision right away.

We were taught that we need to set goals and then work backwards what we need to do to achieve them.

I learned that the opposite works. We need to decide what we want to do, irrespective of the outcome and go and do that. The outcome will take care of itself.

Joseph Campbell said “If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path.” You create your path with every step you take.

3. Staying in flow requires letting go.

In the beginning of 2022, I had chosen a word for my year: alignment. As I look back, I see that the way I brought more alignment and flow was by letting go.

This year I let go of being an INSEAD 1:1 coach. The 1:1 coaching was replaced with one of the most fun experiences I had in my career, the INSEAD Life Vision Programme.

I let go of the traditional 1:1 coaching assignments, and I now mainly work 1:1 in an in-person, VIP coaching day format (LeaderDays). This allowed more work to go to my LeaderPath coaches and more space for me to work on other projects.

I also let go of sales calls for non-corporate assignments. People who want to work with me can message me with their questions or ask them live on my new live LinkedIn show.

I also took the most holidays in 2022 I have had in a while, letting go of the need to have a traditional corporate schedule. These holidays led to my most significant breakthroughs.

What do you need to let go in 2023?

4. Take inspired action quickly, non-attached to the outcome.

Over the summer, I felt the urge to talk about parenting. It did not make sense strategically, as most of my 1:1 clients did not even have kids. Would it dilute my brand that focuses on leadership, team development and vision?

Still, I felt I had a lot to share about parenting before my kids were older.

From the idea to execution, it took two weeks. I delivered the ParentPath course live on LinkedIn, and then it was remastered and put on sale on my website.

I did it without worrying whether people would attend or whether the course would sell. A week after the live class, I received a request for a proposal for a multiple 5-figure team coaching contract. The person who requested it had watched my ParentPath course:-)

Act quickly when you have an inspiration. Also, if you do something you enjoy, you are a winner irrespective of the outcome. The unexpected ripple effect from your inspired actions is a bonus.

It is worth noting here that more men than women attended the live and bought the course afterwards. A sign that men crave parenting and work-life balance resources as much, if not more, than women.

5. Often, the path to inner freedom goes through releasing old, unprocessed pain.

When we resist feeling our feelings, we store them inside. Those feelings keep coming up, though, when something reminds us of the original situation – we get triggered.

Most of us live our lives trying to avoid our triggers instead of releasing the unprocessed feelings and being free. If your reaction to an external stimulus is disproportionate, it is probably poking something stored from the past.

Rather than fighting the trigger, you can see it as an opportunity to release some stored pain. I did a lot of releasing this year which allowed me to access unprecedented levels of joy.  

No need to live our life captured by the fear of feeling something uncomfortable. Feel it, release it, and be free.

Warning: if you have unprocessed trauma, it is better to work with a professional to do this, as it can be risky to do it alone.

6. Investing towards your desired future is one of the most powerful moves you can make

I got invited to do a TEDx this year. It got me thinking about all the times I was asked to do cool things, such as writing a book for Penguin or becoming a coach for INSEAD. In all those cases, I had invested significantly towards the opportunity before the opportunity even appeared.

I had invested in my MSc in Executive Coaching before being invited to coach at INSEAD. I had invested in a business accelerator that included support for writing a book before Penguin reached out. And I had invested in a public speaking course before TEDx Patras wrote to me.

There is something that changes when you invest in yourself and what you want. Your belief in your vision is strong, otherwise you would not bet your money on it.

You move first, and the universe responds.

7. To be more successful, you need to think less, not more

This was one of the breakthroughs I had through my own 1:1 coaching. Thinking all the time does not make you smarter, it makes you more anxious.

This year, I found out that the less I allowed my thinking to interfere with my presence in the here and now, the more happy, calm and successful I was.

This is something that meditators have been arguing for years and I got it on the surface.

But, I was only able to let go of my incessant thinking, when I realized on a deep level that I was not successfull because of it; I was successful despite of it.

8. Clinging to the good things holds you back

I attended a yoga class by the sea during the summer, which was so much fun. But I immediately started clinging to the experience and worrying about how I could replicate it in the city.

I was not truly experiencing the moment; I was clinging to the moment.

When we do this, we end up constantly comparing the now with an older “better” experience that we got attached to.

I realised that letting good experiences go without clinging can help us experience every moment without comparisons or expectations.

9. Have the uncomfortable conversations early on

In 2022, I experienced disappointment in professional relationships. It almost always came down to my failure to have uncomfortable conversations early on. I did not set clear expectations about decision-making processes, the remit of authority, satisfaction, payments; you name it.

My desire to keep the relationship bubbly and not have the “transactional” conversation was the exact thing that damaged those relationships.

I understand now that the more I want to protect a professional relationship, the more I need to have uncomfortable conversations early on.

10. Be the path of least resistance for awesomeness to your loved ones.

Many people will hold themselves back because they do not want to leave their loved ones behind. They are afraid that they will be judged or alienated by family and friends if they become too successful.

This year, I intentionally designed a lot of awesome experiences for my family and friends.

I realised that I could be the path of least resistance for awesomeness for my loved ones.

I am not leaving anyone behind. As I am rising, I am taking my people along with me.

Which one of the 10 learnings resonated the most? Hit respond and let me know.

Take care,

Caterina

Additional resources

New Year, New Frontier

Let’s make 2023 our best year yet! My ‘New Year, New Frontier’ coaching program starts on the 9th January!

Join me for daily audios with assignments to provide insight and clarity, two 90-minute workshops to reflect, create, and be inspired by others, and an online community.

In week 1, we’ll say goodbye to the past year, extract the learnings, and celebrate the wins.

In week 2, we’ll focus on setting up the new year for success in all areas, including health, work, play, and relationships.

It will be practical, hands-on, and you’ll meet some cool people.

Only $111.

2023 is going to be epic. Period. Join here.

The LeaderPath Show

I am launching a Live LinkedIn Show. This will be an opportunity to spend time with you and have life-changing discussions together.

The first episode will go into depth on the learnings from 2022 and goes live on 5th January. You can sign up for free here.

Taking the TEDx Stage Masterclass

If you are interested in giving a TEDx talk, you can watch the replay here. If you have not watched my TEDx talk “Do your goals prevent your success?” you can watch it here.

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