Wow. It’s JULY.
Can you believe it?!?!
Time has seriously flown, I find myself waking up every morning wishing for more hours in the day or for the seconds to simply slow down.
July also means we’re headed into the last half of 2017. Six months ago I posted about my ‘this time next year’ challenge, and there were so many people who got involved. Sending me their goals, secretly written down and sealed in envelopes for me to store away until the end of the year.
I thought today was a good opportunity to have a think about my own and see how I was getting on accomplishing mine.
Got to admit… it’s not going great.
Six months in and I am no way near hitting my goal for the year. I’m not going to lie, I’m pretty disappointed in myself. For years I have set myself lists of objectives and I normally get through the majority of them. This year I simply challenged myself to one thing, just the ONE and I just can’t seem to do it!?!
So. I’ve decided I need a new plan of action.
Usually at a time like this I would be looking for ways to motivate myself. Kick start my brain into thinking “you can do this. You can do anything” but for this particular task, that approach is beginning to seem wasted.
Maybe I need to instead turn to why I’m not achieving it. What’s stopping me?
Are the factors that are stopping me from doing it greater than my will to succeed?
Surely that can’t be possible??
As it happens, I don’t believe it is possible, BUT I do believe that looking into my failings could actually be the key to winning this fight against myself.
Literally by chance, fate fed me a sign that I was finally on the right track.
As I worked through my morning chores, my TED app playing in the background, a talk by Tim Ferriss caught my attention instantly as he explained when it came to hard choices in life, we should be looking towards defining our fears rather than our goals.
And there it was. The answer to what I was struggling with. The challenge I set myself this year is very much more about addressing my failings rather than pushing myself with quotes on positive mental attitudes.
By working through the extremely simple methodology he lays out in his talk, I realised that there were a number of deeper issues that was stopping me from moving forward.
Now, I’m not quite ready to tell you what exactly my goal is yet, but I’m definitely feeling a lot more confident about being able to achieve it thanks to Tim.
He mentions a philosophy that relates to his practice: stoicism.
I knew nothing about stoicism until I heard his talk, but looking into the subject I’ve realised it is right up my street!
It’s defined as the following:
The endurance of pain or hardship without the display of feelings and without complaint.
It sounds kind of harsh, but if you investigate further you’ll find that it simply means accepting that there are many physical and mental factors that are out of our control, however we have the capability to train our minds to deal with hardship through our thoughts.
I’ve talked many, many times about the importance of shifting paradigms, to better understand a situation and this is no different. When I’ve looked at Stephen Coveys paradigm shift stories in the past I’ve always spoke about using it to see how a situation affects others. From what I’ve read so far, stoicism seems very much about helping yourself. Self-preservation, self-control. Important skills which I’m pretty sure we could all do with some help on.
Rather than me continue to bore you, I recommend taking just ten minutes out of your night to have a watch of Tim’s talk.
If like me, you’ve been struggling to hit your goals, struggling to reach for that dream, maybe you too need to look at things differently. Sometimes we need to address the tough stuff in order to ease us on our way…
How are you getting on with your goals? Has anyone achieved there’s yet? How do you motivate yourself? Any tips are most welcome!!