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Embracing Your Quest for Success


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Laura Gassner Otting is a renowned life coach and best-selling author of “Limitless: How To Ignore Everybody, Carve Your Own Path, and Live Your Best Life.” She’s been featured on TODAY, Good Morning America, and Oprah.

In this episode of Motivational Mondays, we talk about her new book, “Wonderhell: Why Success Doesn't Feel Like It Should… and What To Do About It,” and how you have to give yourself permission to let your definition of success adapt and change as you do.

Why Otting wrote “Wonderhell”

Otting wrote her book because she found herself living through it. According to Otting, “‘Wonderhell’ is the space between who you were yesterday and who you just realized you could become tomorrow.”

When she published “Limitless,” it debuted at No. 2 on the Washington Post bestseller list, right behind Michelle Obama. It was a success but her mind immediately went to how she could get on The New York Times list. She was struck with anxiety, uncertainty, doubt, and imposter syndrome. It made her question if enough is ever enough.

Give yourself the grace to change

In “Limitless,” she wrote about finding a definition of success that works for each individual. In “Wonderhell,” she delves into the nuance of beginning to achieve something that’s important to you. Once you begin to achieve it, you see more versions of who you can become.

The person you want to be changes at every age and every stage of your life. At some point, someone hands you a list and says, “This is what makes a job good.” But no one tells you how to make a good job good for you. Ultimately, you have to give yourself the grace to change.

Otting knew she wanted to see what else was out there for her. The chasm between where she was and where she wanted to be wasn’t as big as she thought, but you have to learn to listen to yourself when you’ve had enough. If the next victory doesn’t interest you, it’s okay to move on and do something else.

Four questions to ask yourself before you say yes

You have to be intentional about your decisions on your quest for success. Otting asks herself four questions before she says yes to anything.

  1. Will this thing that’s being asked of me get me closer to my goals?

  2. Will this thing help someone else or are you simply on a list of multiple people they’ve asked?

  3. Will this thing cause me joy?

  4. Am I qualified to help this person or is someone else better suited?

If the answer to No. 4 is yes, you can say, “I don’t have the bandwidth to do this right now, but give me a minute to think about somebody else who might be better off.” You’re still helping but not taking on something you can’t.

Otting imparts more life lessons that you can embrace on your quest to success in this episode of Motivational Mondays.

Listen to this episode to learn about...

[1:35] Why Otting wrote “Wonderhell.”
[3:46] Giving yourself the grace to change.
[5:52] Wanting more while appreciating what you have.
[10:01] Being more intentional with small actions.
[14:44] The four questions to ask yourself before you say yes.
[21:00] Otting’s worst management story.
[27:40] How to be intentional with your leadership.

Listen to the bonus episode to learn how to define what type of leader you want to be and why you should lean into what makes you special.



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