As much as we’d rather avoid it, the truth is that at some point in our lives, most of us will find ourselves facing a difficult situation.
Even the most carefully laid plans get off track, and the best of intentions can go south. Whether you find yourself facing a brick wall, or feel that you’re running out of steam, the end result’s the same. You suddenly find that you have no desire to push forward or reach for the stars anymore.
Maybe you find that you’re doubting yourself and wondering whether you’ll actually be able to accomplish the things that you’d planned. Maybe you’re thinking, “Those goals are too big for me,” or “What was I thinking?!”
“Be careful how you are talking to yourself because you are listening.”
The truth is that when things get tough, the biggest risks are giving in and giving up. But instead of succumbing to the feelings of frustration and discouragement, it’s important to step back and find a way to rise above.
Ready to change your thoughts from “I can’t” to “of course I can?” Here are some ideas for taking back control of your mindset—and finding a way.
1. Visualize It
Many people are visual learners, meaning they learn best when they can see something for themselves, instead of just reading about it. If this sounds like you, then there’s a good chance that you could benefit from visualizing your goals. Focus on them, remind yourself of them, and try to ask yourself what, exactly, the end result will look like. Try to envision it—and make it real. This tactic can also be applied to smaller, short-term goals as well. For instance, if you have a busy day ahead, visualize how you want it to go. Think through each step of your day and visualize the outcomes that you want to have. Having a visual plan of how things should go will help you stand upright when the going gets tough.
2. Be Mindful of Your Thoughts
Your thoughts are powerful. And if left unchecked, they can be dangerous too. Be careful that the thoughts you are thinking about yourself and your goals are positive, and don’t let the self-doubt and second guessing come in. Instead, be mindful of your thoughts—and learn to direct them. On those days when you feel defeated or overwhelmed, it’s important to take the time to readjust your mindset. Try to refocus by thinking of something that you’re grateful for. Keeping a gratitude journal can help to assist with this. When you feel like giving up, jog your memory by reminding yourself of the reasons that you decided to embark on this journey in the first place. Be mindful of the thoughts that you’re thinking about yourself and correct them. Replace those doubts with positive, encouraging thoughts. You’ll be surprised at how much this can help reshape your state of mind!
3. Don’t Hold Yourself Back
So often we are our own worst critics. Everyone else could be cheering us on, but we’re on the sidelines repeating negative thoughts to ourselves! Whenever you feel that you can’t do something, or are hesitant to try something new, ask yourself if these thoughts are coming from a place of truth and positivity, or if they’re being fueled by fear. Fear is a powerful motivator, but being motivated by fear will never lead to an outcome that’s as positive as one that’s motivated by a dream or a goal. Holding yourself back and keeping yourself from trying something new out of fear is a big mistake. Don’t limit yourself. Instead, step back and let the greatness flow!
4. Take Small Steps in the Right Direction
When we start to feel overwhelmed, sometimes simply taking a few steps in the right direction is enough to spur us on and get us back on track. If you feel defeated, think of something that you’re grateful for. When you feel overwhelmed, plan tomorrow out. When you feel like quitting, remind yourself of what you’re trying to achieve. Instead of beating yourself up, learn from your mistakes—and then get back up and try again.
Avoid dwelling on your mistakes or failures, but rather focus on your achievements and how far you’ve come. This is especially important on those days when nothing has gone right and you are tempted to give in. When the going gets tough, get tougher! Don’t let life get in the way of your goals and don’t get in your own way either.