Whatever your goal, obstacles will always present themselves and they can stop us in our tracks.
You set a goal and you are excited about where you will be when you reach it. The work starts and you can now envision your dream as a reality. Then you run into a roadblock.
This very thing hit me hard this week.
Our team had been working on a new concept for 5 months and we were scheduled to launch. Excitement was in the air as we finished up our final touches.
Two days from launching, we faced an unexpected obstacle; 30% of our offerings would no longer be available on our planned launch date. We had designed our programs and services around these offerings.
It felt like a mountain was dropped on me, I didn’t even see it coming. I had a moment of complete confusion and felt deflated. How can I fix this? Do I delay the launch or forget about the new concept completely after putting so much time and effort into my goals? I felt like I had failed before I even started. I was in tears; I took a walk and then I was in tears again. I then decided to sleep on it.
We can see obstacles as a puzzle to solve or an opportunity to grow. Or, we can see obstacles as threats or reasons why we cannot succeed. How we view obstacles has a direct impact on how we react and can help or hinder the achievement of our goals. If we view an obstacle as the world is against us or that we have failed, we will find ourselves overwhelmed and filled with painful thoughts, we will lose our passion and stop trying.
Sure as the sun will rise, we will have to overcome mountains, hills, ditches, and roadblocks when we are making life changes. The key is to not give up. It’s normal and if it wasn’t then you wouldn’t be working towards a goal, you would already be there – It’s the work part. I love this quote by Frank Clark. `If you find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere.”
Follow these steps the next time you are facing an Obstacle.
TAKE TIME - Spend some time to feel what is coming up emotionally. We are unable to work on overcoming the obstacle if we are in an emotional space. Our emotions will urge us to quit. So, it’s important to spend some time feeling these emotions. We are likely to feel like the world is against us and that we have failed. We sometimes feel shame and just want to hide. Understand that these feelings are normal. When we are ready, we need to switch off the emotional mind and start thinking with a clear mind, a mind that is ready to get back to planning our success.
DON’T PLAY THE BLAME GAME - When we blame others, we lose control of getting back on the success wagon. If the roadblock is someone else’s fault, how can we ever succeed? If the power of success belongs to someone other than us, we have no chance of accomplishing our dreams and goals. Blaming is discouraging and is a waste of your energy. Blaming isn't helpful in solving the problem.
LEARN – Now it’s time to get into our creative minds. We may need to consider different ways or approaches to reach our goal. We need to be flexible and open to new ideas and new solutions. Knowing what doesn't work allows us to think of different ways to reach our goals. Understanding and learning what doesn’t work brings us 1 step closer to success. That’s important information when executing a new plan...
REMEMBER YOUR WHY – What inspired you to take the journey and what were you hoping to gain before you started. Was it something you saw? – look at it again. Was it someone you admire? – understand they were once working towards the same goal. Everyone makes mistakes and everyone takes a wrong turn every once in a while. Even those who make it look easy also have struggles. Just ask; they will tell you.
CELEBRATE HOW FAR YOU HAVE COME - Celebrate where you are today! It’s important to recognize what you have already accomplished. We need to celebrate even the smallest steps in the right direction. What did you find out about yourself, what new skills did you learn, what was easier than you thought, and what steps were you really good at? Recognizing how far you have come will help you stay focused on what you want to achieve in the end.
REVISE YOUR PLAN - It's perfectly normal to change your plan along the way. Part of the journey is learning what works and what doesn’t. Now we need to acknowledge what didn’t work. Collect the information and understand what we learned. Accept the new information and consider alternatives. We need to write down the next 5 steps in the order of most importance. Now you need to complete the 2 steps that would be the easiest and/or most enjoyable, accomplish these steps within 24 hours. This will reignite your passion.
Life is amazing but can be challenging at times, there are many roads and paths that can lead you to your goals or dreams. You see, on the very day I learned that EatFitLife needed to pivot, was the same day that I found out that I would be writing the “You Got This!” column again and here I am writing about how to overcome obstacles. I took my own advice mentioned above and EatFitLife is still launching and our program is better than before. Don’t give up, because a block in the road only means that you are going the wrong way and a journey is not a journey without turns, bumps, hills, mountains, and ditches.
You Got This!