I am in a place and time in life at the moment that comes with many emotions. Several things have happened, are happening as I write this and will happen in the coming days. Things that leave me in different states, but mostly anxious. Anxious about the outcome, about my reaction, about the future.
I don’t like anxiety and my approach to deal with it has been to first determine how I do want to feel. I want to be curious about the outcome, positive in my expectations and confident that I will handle it. Though this has helped, the anxiety still kept creeping up, sometimes even stronger than before.
I found that I was trying too hard to push it down and it was fighting back. Then I wrote down in my journal: This too shall pass. And these four words had a more calming effect than all the things I had done before. I know there will be calm after the storm. I know I will overcome possible sadness or disappointment. I am human. As a human I am built to feel and I am built to heal.
I still don’t know the outcomes. They may bring pain, they may bring happiness. Whatever they bring, anything I feel tells me that it’s important to me and that I care. And I will move through it, knowing that this too shall pass.
Show yourself. Be open to judgment. Share your work, your passion, your ideas, your beliefs.
I see too many people trying to play it safe. They want things to change but they are not willing to put themselves out there. They have wonderful ideas but they don’t want to take the risk of being rejected.
I think the world is missing out on so much, because of that. I often am one of those people who stay below the radar. And I also know that stepping forward is exciting and scary at the same time. But being your authentic self and sharing that with the world around you is priceless. And I find that if you put yourself out there, without pushing others aside, it will be appreciated and people will be inspired to do the same.
How successful you are depends on a lot of small factors. Take a job interview, for instance. Dressing right, smelling right, being on time, your handshake, your facial expression, the first words out of your mouth, your inner dialog, your preparation, your state…I could go on and on. All these small factors can make the difference between success and failure.
Especially when you are in competition, small factors make all the difference. You will want to optimize every detail that you can. A good strategy for improvement is to think small instead of big. If you want to improve a skill or activity, do the following:
Thinking small has the following advantages:
What area in work or elsewhere could you improve on in bite size chunks?
If life hits you over the head with problem after problem, it’s easy to get discouraged and frustrated. Every problem that comes up just makes your heart drop even more. I have fallen prey to this at times and it still happens from time to time, especially when I’m overwhelmed at work.
My remedy is reframing the problem, by asking: What’s the opportunity presented here? How can I use this to learn, to improve, to feel good? You need to ask this with a curious and excited mindset. In the beginning it’s all about pretending to be curious and excited, even if it’s just for a few seconds. This already breaks the negative pattern. If you practice this mindset and reframing the problem as an opportunity, you will find it gets easier and puts you in a more positive flow.
Don’t expect never to feel bad about a problem again. You do have a tool now that will prevent you lingering too long in that bad emotion.
Get curious. Get excited. See the opportunity.
You only have to redefine success. How successful you feel depends on your definition of success. Most people define it in terms of money, power, influence, position, etc. That’s fine. But in the search for our defined success we tend to forget that we are successful already in so many ways. Being able to comfort a friend, making somebody smile, being able to stay afloat through economic hardship (even if barely), those are all valid definitions of success.
Redefine success and recognize that you are already successful. That’s a better place to start from to reach for more success.