Can you recall hopes, dreams, and goals that you have not accomplished because you stopped working toward them? I can.
In fact, this blog has been a dream of mine for several years. I put the idea on the backburner many times. While I do believe it takes significant time and thought to nurture a dream, I finally came to terms with this: I was not prioritizing something I knew was very important to me. I had to figure out why there was a gap between what was important to me and how I was actually spending my time.
My AHA! moment came when I was reading Jack Canfield’s “The Success Principles.” Canfield describes 3 types of thoughts that prevent us from accomplishing an awesomely scary goal. You can bet they will emerge the moment you decide to do something special, something outside your comfort zone.
Here are these 3 types of thoughts:
Canfield shared an exercise that helped me identify why I was not moving forward with my goal.
Write every fear, consideration and potential roadblock related to your big goal.
I followed Jack’s advice. I cleared an hour in my schedule and sat in my tidy, open living room with a notebook and a pen. On the paper, I wrote down every single fear, consideration and roadblock I could think of that prevented me from not starting my blog, as well as my professional speaking career. I was completely honest with myself. I did not allow fear or shame to stop me from writing down these excuses.
These are thoughts that I had in regard to NOT starting a blog:
“People will not be interested in what I write.”
“I will quit when it starts to get good.”
“I might quit when it seems like no one is reading.”
“I don’t know enough about putting a blog together.”
“I need the blog to look flawless first. It has to be up to my high standards before I publish it.”
“I don’t know if I have the time to write regularly.”
Here is what I wrote in regard to NOT begin professional speaking:
“People won’t be interested in my topics.”
“Leaders won’t accept me to speak to their audience.”
“I don’t have enough experience.”
“Wow, this is way too scary.”
“What if I fail?”
“I don’t have the time to invest in this right now.”
“I’m busy right now.”
These negative, fear-induced thoughts kept me from making notable progress. Procrastination is one of the main ways we sabotage great things/ideas/goals. I spent hours on the Internet. I cleaned. I organized closets and stacks of papers. Now, I did read a significant amount about how to be a great blogger so that was a good use of time. However, if I did a little less of all those other things in the last year, I could have written dozens of blogposts.
After you write your thoughts down, acknowledge them. Acknowledge every single excuse, potential roadblock, and negative thought that has stalled you. Acknowledge that they are typical to the process. They will happen. It’s inherent to accomplishing anything great. Acknowledge that since you know this, you will not use them as excuses anymore.
“Our deepest fear is not that we’re inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us…As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
~Marianne Williamson, “A Return to Love”
(one of my favorite quotes of all-time)
Back in the day, I spent SO much time reading success stories and healthy eating tips in magazines. I saw the same ones over and over, plus new ones. I was so overwhelmed with advice that I couldn’t implement it all, so I didn’t end up implementing much of anything.
If your goal is to slim down or get stronger, get started already! You do not have to wait for the day when you know everything. You will never know everything. No matter what your goal is, and no matter how successful you become, there is always fine-tuning to do. So many people I meet are hungry for more information when they already know a decent amount to get started.
CALL TO ACTION!
Again, recall something special you want to achieve. Write it down. Schedule some time in the next few days to sit down and practice Canfield’s exercise. When you are finished, plan your first step to accomplish your goal.
In the comments below, let me know what you want to achieve.