Can you even make it out? It has a large tag on it and is nothing more than a spindly stick or two. Have I found the perfect spot? I don't know know but it couldn't do much worse than where it was. When I bought it a year or two ago, it was lush and green. Obviously, I've not been a very good caretaker because it has steadily gotten skinner and skinner. However, at the beginning of the growing season, it sprouts a few green leaves and looks promising, so I've left it where it was to languish and practically die. Hopefully the move will salvage what's left of it.
Can you relate to this in your life? Albert Einstein said, "Life is like a bicycle, to keep your balance you must keep moving." Are you pursuing your mission, your passion in life? Do you know what it is? Do you keep saying, "One day I will--when I have more time or more money or more energy"? While getting started is an action step, many times it is our internal critical voice that prohibits us from taking that first step. Here are four key roadblocks to getting started:
• Not knowing exactly what you want. If you haven’t yet set a goal it’s hard to achieve. Many times we distract ourselves by identifying so many possibilities that we are overwhelmed with the choices. We say things like, “I could do anything…if I only knew what it was that I wanted to do.” This involves identifying our mission in life and then learning to set goals. Pick one or two goals and put 100% of your effort into achieving it. You can always backtrack to other minor goals later.
• We know what we want but we are afraid to go for it. We are afraid we may fail. We secretly have a desire, a goal, but we are afraid if others knew about it, we would be turned down, rejected or embarrassed if we don’t achieve it. We may try to achieve on our own without using our resources, usually to no avail. We say things like, “I guess it just wasn’t meant to be.” We are actually cheating ourselves with this one. The resources in our lives are often more available and ready to help us achieve than we recognize.
• We are afraid of success. Just as fear of failure can paralyze us, so can fear of success. What if we don’t really know what to do, how to act, how to perform? What if we are overwhelmed with the responsibility of success, the amount of time and energy that it requires? What if we are successful and it turns out not to be what we expect it to be? Again our internal voice is paralyzing us with what if questions. We may say, “What if I succeed and they expect me to know everything and then find out I don’t?” We fail to recognize the flexibility, the power and the control that we have in any given situation.
• We know what we want but we don’t know the steps, the path, and the way to achieve it. This is a research question. There is always someone who has gone before us in all that we do. We need to find a role model and connect with them to discover how they were successful. We can then design our own way.
Sound like a daunting job? It is difficult but not impossible. Roadblocks can be cleared and the road paved for success. Don’t let fear of success or failure, lack of focus or lack of knowledge keep you from making that first step to achieving your goal.
Will Rogers says, "It doesn’t matter if you are on the right track. If you are sitting still you will get run over." What about you? Are you moving forward?