Do you feel stuck in an area of your life and aren’t sure how to move forward?
Have you set a goal to get “unstuck” but have trouble following through?
You’ve gone to the grocery store and stocked up on healthy food so you can eat better. You’ve purchased a new workout program or joined the gym so you can get more exercise. You’ve blocked out time in your day to connect with your kids, grow in your faith, declutter your home, or work on your business.
You’re overflowing with confidence and enthusiasm! You think, this time will be different! This time I will follow through! This time I will finally accomplish my goal!
Then, “this time” comes and something holds you back. You end up going through the drive through instead of cooking that healthy dinner you had planned, sleeping in instead of working out, and allowing daily distractions to pull you away from being more intentional with your time.
You tell yourself, “I’ll start tomorrow.” Or on Monday. (Because all new resolutions must begin on a Monday or January 1st, right?) And the cycle continues…
The best advice when it comes to getting unstuck is so straightforward, but it makes ALL THE DIFFERENCE between staying where you are or allowing yourself to grow and reach your full potential.
Just get started. Take that first step. Choose one thing to focus on and move forward.
Sounds pretty simple, right? Yet, we tell ourselves that the timing or our circumstances aren’t perfect. We get overwhelmed by how far we have to go instead of focusing on just putting one foot in front of the other. We let fear, worry, and self-doubt get in the way of where we want to go and who we want to become.
“Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out.” – Robert Collier
Success is not about leaps and bounds. It’s not about overhauling your life by trying to change everything at once. It’s about focusing on one or two things that will have the greatest impact and starting there. It’s about small efforts, repeated consistently, that add up to BIG changes. Decide what that first step looks like for you and take it!
Taking that first step can be scary and overwhelming, but it is what allows you to grow into the person you were meant to be. It is only when you step outside your comfort zone that real change happens.
Here are three ways to make taking that first step a bit easier:
1. Change your mindset. Stop thinking in black and white. Start thinking in shades of gray.
When we think in black and white, everything is either a success or a failure. This mindset results in feeling disappointed, discouraged, and defeated when we fall short of our expectations and things don’t go the way we had planned. When we think in shades of gray, we can overcome the fear of failure by recognizing that a small step in the right direction is still a success (1).
When we think in shades of gray, the only way our efforts are a failure are if we change absolutely nothing. If we prepare one healthy meal, get one extra workout in, or spend just a few extra minutes connecting with our kids, that’s not a failure – that’s a success! It may be a small small step forward, but we are no longer where we used to be, and we are moving! We are no longer stuck!
Sometimes that first step is less about how far you move forward as it is about no longer being stuck. You’ve conquered the fear of staying within your comfort zone, you will learn from that experience, and the next step you take will be with a little more wisdom and a lot more confidence. It may be scary, but it will be worth it!
2. Let go of the past and negative emotions associated with those experiences.
Regardless of your history, today can be a day to start fresh. Your failures do not define you if you learn from them and look at them as an opportunity to begin again with new insight as to what works and what does not. Don’t be defined by your setbacks – be defined by your comebacks.
As a Health and Fitness Coach, I have witnessed hundreds of amazing transformations, but I’ve also seen many women struggle to let go of the past and negative feelings associated with those experiences, including fear of failure, self-doubt, and low self-esteem. When you find those “mindset monsters” creeping in, replace your negative thoughts with power thoughts. Thinking healthy, productive thoughts will produce healthy, productive action so that you can let go of the past and move forward.
3. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
There is an inspirational video by Steve Harvey called “You Gotta Jump to be Successful” in which he describes how we have to take that leap of faith and jump in order for our metaphorical parachute to open so we can “soar.” In order to reach our goals, we have to step out of our comfort zone…we have to jump off that cliff into the unknown…we have to face our fears. But here’s the part I don’t want you to miss!
When we do finally take that step – that jump off the cliff – our parachutes won’t open right away. There will be a period of time where we are free falling, completely terrified, utterly uncomfortable, and perhaps even unsure of what comes next. But then, that moment arrives where your parachute will open up. You will be soaring along with the rest of those who took the leap of faith and are experiencing things they could have never imagined. As you take in the breath taking view, you glance back at the edge of that cliff and see the others that are still standing there – not moving, completely comfortable, but completely stuck.
Who do you want to be?
Change can be scary. For many of us, stepping outside our comfort zone brings feelings of anxiety, fear, or inadequacy. We want assurance that this time really is going to be different. We want to know that this time we will accomplish our goals. And while no one can promise that taking that first step will guarantee success, I can promise that you’ll never get where you want to go if you don’t take it.
How I’ve gotten unstuck…
Last year, I was inspired to expand my vision for my coaching business to include all aspects of a person’s health and well-being (e.g. physical, emotional, spiritual). In addition to providing healthy recipes, family-friendly meal plans, and top-notch workout programs, I wanted to provide resources for women to grow in their faith, in their parenting, and in their relationship with their spouse.
In addition to sharing success stories of weight loss and renewed energy, I was inspired to share the testimonies of women whose lives had been completely transformed by their faith. I set out to start a blog to encourage and inspire others to join me in my journey towards living a healthier, more focused life and achieving a true transformation – one that starts by first looking at what’s happening on the inside.
The problem was, I was scared. Scared that I wasn’t good enough or capable enough. That no one would want to read what I had written. That all the time and energy that I put into this “hobby” would be wasted. As a former high school science teacher, I thrive on personal face-to-face interactions, not sitting in front of a computer screen. Writing does not come naturally to me. I was entering a completely new territory and it was terrifying.
I spent months reading about how to compose an engaging blog post and build the ideal website, only to become overwhelmed and discouraged by how little I knew. I held back from sharing my posts and launching my new website, Fueled Fit Focused, for months until one day it finally hit me. I wasn’t taking my own advice – the same advice that I gave to those I supported in their health and fitness goals.
Just get started. Take that first step. Choose one thing to focus on and move forward.
I finally decided to stop making excuses and letting those “mindset monsters” (e.g. fear, worry, and self-doubt) hold me back. I was tired of being stuck and waiting for “the perfect time” that I now realize does not exist. Instead of doing nothing because I felt overwhelmed, I made a commitment to doing something every day that would move me one step closer to my goal. I started finding little pockets of time within my day to work on generating content instead of waiting for a two hour block that I wasn’t going to get. I refused to let myself get frustrated at my lack of progress by reminding myself that slow progress is still progress and that my timing is not always God’s timing.
“Progress. Just make progress. It’s okay to have setbacks and the need for do-overs. It’s okay to draw a line in the sand and start over again – and again. Just make sure you’re moving the line forward. Move forward. Take baby steps, but at least take steps that keep you from being stuck. Then change will come. And it will be good.” – Darren Hardy, The Compound Effect
It’s Your Turn…
Today, as I publish my first blog post, I am inviting you to join me and just get started! Instead of doing nothing because you can’t do everything, choose to do the something that you can do. Point yourself in the right direction and take one baby step forward. Conquer the fear of staying within your comfort zone and dare to be uncomfortable. Because that is the only way you will get unstuck!
“You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” – Zig Ziglar
Today, I am asking you to boldly take that first step! Don’t wait for a New Year or a Monday to have a fresh start! Start today!
CALL TO ACTION #1 (Please reply below): What goal do you need to “just get started” on? What does that first step look like for you?
CALL TO ACTION #2: If you would like support and accountability to reach your goals in health, fitness, parenting or spiritual growth, please join my Ongoing Support and Accountability Facebook Group, Fueled Fit Focused, by clicking HERE and requesting to be added to our online community.
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1. Lotich, Bob. (2016, June 17). How to Overcome the Fear of Failure. SeedTime. Retrieved June 17, 2016 from https://christianpf.com/overcome-fear-of-failure/.
2. Hardy, Darren. The Compound Effect. New York, N.Y: First Da Capo Press, 2013.