How to take down the giants in life is not common sense. It really isn’t. If it were, we would all be living our best life. There would be noNo condemnation there – just a fact.
Most days I give up before I start. I have already told myself that today is not the day. Tackle that mountain? Nope, not today.
How many of us have that as our attitude towards the goals we set in life? In his interview with Hailie Deegan, Jeff Haden talks about this very issue.
one of the most common reasons people give up on their goals is the distance between here, where they are today, and there, where they someday hope to be…That’s why so many people give up on huge goals: They don’t feel they can bridge the gap between here and there.
It can’t be the here and there that stops people. It’s the fear that is attached to getting there when all they can see is the here. The layers of the fear. The fear of making a mistake. The fear of looking foolish. The fear of not being able to do it. The fear of others’ opinion.
Which is why so many people fail because they allow the fear to overcome them before they even start.
How can we overcome this fear? Here are seven tips I have learned in this past year:
- Take captive every thought. When fear or doubt about the here and there creeps in, as it will do every day (sometimes many times a day), don’t entertain it. As one friend says “Don’t let it land.” Every person who has found success in the big and the small has had to stop the barrage of negative thoughts ready to take them out.
- Acknowledge that you are not the only one who struggles with this tendency. That can be a powerful tool if we see that if others go through it and overcome, then I can too.
- Find your tribe. Find those people in your life that naturally elevate your thinking. Whether they cause you to think big, live big, reach far or keep your head above the weeds, find your tribe. Their influence in your life can be stronger than any negative thought that tries to land. They will be there to check in periodically, encourage you, ask you great questions, and speak to the giants in your life.
- Read, research, surround yourself in the thought culture that aligns with your goals. If you want to become an excellent cook, you have to follow the learnings of those who went before you. I’d suggest you follow people on various stages of the journey. Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube can all be helpful in research and spectrum thinking. Following beginners, intermediates and SMEs (Subject Matter Experts), can help you with keys to success along your journey. The beginners are particularly helpful because they are your comrades, your brothers-in-arms, as you step out. Buy books, watch Ted talks – anything that helps you align your thinking.
- Meditate, pray, journal. Have you ever found yourself feeling overwhelmed in the middle of the night or having a mini-panic attack during the day where you have made a mountain out of a molehill? It’s when you rehearse again and again all that needs to be accomplished, all the reasons why you can’t or won’t be able to reach your goal. In those times, worry has become the meditation of your heart. To journal, pray or intentionally settling your thoughts can have a profound quieting effect on those mountains. By naming the mountain, naming the panic, we can minimize its power, and it shrinks back to being a molehill. That’s why some experts recommend you keep a notepad on your side table at night, so you can write down those “to dos” or things your prone to struggle with. They say that by writing them down, you effectively lay them to rest, so you can rest your mind.
- Simplify your life to make room for the things you want. A friend of mine once used the analogy of Lego blocks when discussing relationship. If you picture your available time as those raised circles on a Lego piece, you only have a finite number of connections you can make to those in your life. This can be said too of your time to complete tasks. If you are spending most of your time on tasks that detract from your goals, then simplify your tasks. For some, it might be reducing your meetings out, or reducing your activities (or your children’s activities). For others, it might be reducing your possessions (less possessions have been proven to increase free time and creativity). Whatever it is, evaluate your life and begin to simplify. Learn to say no to the things that keep you from saying yes to the things you want to accomplish. It will be hard at first – deconditioning is reprogramming your mind – but with regular baby steps of simplifying, the tide will turn.
- Similar to finding your tribe, find a select few who you invite into your accountability. They will be more closely aligned to you than your tribe. They will have access to you, and will likely have strengths that you don’t have. I would recommend you read Who’s in Your Personal Boardroom by King and Scott. A very helpful resource, challenging us to be intentional with our relationships.
This is not an exhaustive list of tips. There are so many articles that speak of productivity and goal setting. This will probably not be my last article about it either.
What tips do you have for me?
It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves.