To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong. ~Anonymous
Adding to today’s quote: we must also lose our fear of making mistakes, looking stupid, being laughed at, and our friends and family not “getting it” as we go for our dreams.
In order to achieve your dreams, you must listen to the Still Small Voice within and follow the whisperings and urgings of your heart and soul.
Your homework today is to review your week. Pay attention to where you are allowing yourself to be influenced by others, causing you to either half-heartedly pursue your dreams or to not pursue them at all. What can you do in this upcoming week to begin to change this?
Remember to note the steps, and bits of steps, you are taking. Notice the progress you’re making, no matter how small or humble. It all counts; it all adds up!
Today Mom said to me, “You have to do it the hard way.”
At first I thought, oh man, is Mom really telling me to go out of my way to do things the long and difficult way?!
But as I thought more about it, I realized Mom was telling me to not procrastinate and drag my feet over projects. She also meant that I shouldn’t give things a lick and a promise or say that I’ll do it later. And forget about those shortcuts! Oftentimes they turn out to create more problems than if you just sucked it up and got it done the right way.
She was telling me to jump in now and do the projects that need doing; do it right the first time, and do it now because Later On is never a more convenient or easier time—and no shortcuts!
Thanks for the advice, Mom!
Your homework today is to Review Your Week! As you do so, keep an eye to those areas and projects where you can apply Mom’s advice: Do it now, do it right the first time, and forget about looking for shortcuts!
As always when reviewing your week, make sure you note the times you took a step, no matter how small the tidbit of a step and no matter how humble the project. The fact is you did it, you make forward progress!
WooHoo! Yay you!
Make sure you celebrate your progress. Taking even the smallest increments of forward progress will add up over time, as long as you keep doing it, keep taking steps!
“I am stuck on Band Aid brand ’cause Band Aid’s stuck on me.”*
This is well and good if you have a wound that needs protection as it heals, but this isn’t that good as it relates to procrastination versus doing it.
At one time procrastination may have protected you because it caused you to slow down, re-think where you were going and what you were doing. It helped you double-check and feel surer of your decision.
Now, though, it’s holding you back. Time to rip off the Band Aid; time to do what needs doing.
Sometimes, before we actually take the step, things look bigger, farther off, and worse than they turn out to be. I’m sure you can think of instances in your own life where this was true. Afterward you may have wondered what you were so anxious about!
As long as you’ve done your due diligence, then go for it! Have faith in yourself, your skills, and in your intelligence–that you’ll figure it out along the way. Trust that you’ll be able to handle it. And you will. You’ve done so in the past and you can do it again now.
Your homework today is to take a moment to think about one thing you’re procrastinating about. Ask yourself why you’re delaying; is there some part of it that needs a little more investigating? Are you stalling because you don’t have every little answer or your skills aren’t masterfully perfect? Recognize that you’ll never have all the answers and there will always be room for improvement. Break the steps into small, easily doable pieces and then go for it!
You can do it! Yay you!
I am so proud of you. I knew you could do it!
*Band Aid brand bandages are a product of Johnson & Johnson
Keep showing up, no matter what. It may seem hopeless and like a total waste of time. Your friends and family may make fun of you. They may even be checking out facilities with comfy rubber rooms for you because they think you’re totally nuts.
But they can’t hear the Still Small Voice inside you; they can’t see the Vision that you do. The Voice, the Vision, was put inside of you–not them. And, because the Voice and the Vision is inside of you, that means you have the talents and the gifts required to bring that dream into manifestation. Believe it because it’s true!
You may have some work to do–either formal schooling or a program of self-directed study–in order to develop your raw talents, but you do have the raw materials inside you. And you do have what it takes to develop these into the abilities, aptitudes, and skills that you’ll need to make your dreams come true.
Don’t mistake not knowing how to do something–or not being good at it yet–as a predictor of your likelihood of success. They aren’t related…unless you make them related in your own mind and then give up before you even take a shot at it.
For your homework today is think about your skills and abilities and which ones need brushing up and polishing. You may need to hit the books, or observe others who are better than you at a particular thing, to learn more about it.
Keep going! You can do it! Keep plugging away at it–keep moving forward!
“Never give up. Never ever give up.” ~Paraphrase of a quote of Winston Churchill’s *
It can be very hard working toward your dreams and goals. It can be incredibly discouraging and disappointing. It can be painful.
DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES GIVE UP. When you quit, when you throw in the towel, when you give up then it’s all over and there is no hope and no way those goals and dreams will ever come into your life.
You deserve to achieve your goals and dreams. You wouldn’t have them if they were not meant for you. They have your name all over them. They are yours! Go get ’em!
YOU MUST HANG IN THERE. Put your shoulder to that obstacle and push. Even if you have only a little tiny drop of strength, give it your all.
Dig deep. You have strength, you have might, you have a titanium core within you. Life may have knocked you around so much that you think you’re weak and wimpy. I am here to tell you that you are a mighty warrior. You are a victor and a champion. You are way more powerful than anything Life can throw at you. You CAN do it!
So, take a breath and move forward. You can do it, I know you can. I am sure of it!
Your homework for today is to take a look at the steps on the pathway to your goals and dreams. In spite of Life and your Inner Critic telling you it’s impossible and you’re so dumb for thinking you can do it, in spite of that, choose a step, a tiny one that you are positive you can do and then do it. Do it with all the might and glory that you have within you. Because you do have it, it is there waiting for you to tap into it. Go for it! You can do it, I am so very sure of that!
Go for it! You can do it! Yay for you!
I am so very proud of you for not giving up. You are my hero!! You rock! I knew for certain that you could do it!!
* The speech was made October 29, 1941 to the boys at Harrow School. ” Never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.” The full speech is contained in “The Unrelenting Struggle” (London:Cassell and Boston:Little Brown 1942, and is found on pages 274-76 of the English edition). It may also be found in “The Complete Speeches of Winston S. Churchill,” edited by Robert Rhodes James (NY:Bowker and London:Chelsea House 1974).
Honor yourself and your commitment of making this year different for yourself by putting you first.
You took the time yesterday to work with the steps you need to take and you made them into small increments that you are sure you can do. Honor this by scheduling time in your day to actually do one of the steps. I’ve found the best time of the day is first thing in the morning.
When the alarm first rings, get up. Don’t hit the snooze button. I know it’s tough to get out of a warm comfy bed, especially if it’s dark and cold. I know it’s tempting to say you’ll hit the snooze only this once…. Don’t do it–don’t hit that snooze button! Get up instead. You’ll be very glad you did, I promise. Remind yourself that you’re getting up because you are in the process of building something better for yourself this year.
You don’t have to get up hours and hours ahead. I’m sure you hit the snooze button several times in the morning. Snooze periods are from 4 – 9 minutes, depending upon which brand of clock you have. By getting up with the first buzz of the alarm, you’re gaining an extra 4 – 30 minutes (or more!) in the mornings. That’s perfect for completing a step!
Choose one that will take only a few minutes to complete (when you’re beginning a new routine, start small and simple. As your momentum gathers, you can increase your time). This is another one of the benefits of breaking your steps into teeny tiny increments. Not only does it create the belief that you can do that little piece, but the bits are small enough that they can be done in a few minutes.
When you put yourself first each morning, you’ll be surprised and amazed at how much better you’ll feel. Soon, you’ll have a spark of energy that you didn’t have before. You’ll also begin to feel more confident about yourself and more positive about the day ahead. And it won’t take months to feel this. With regularly putting yourself first in the day, you will quickly feel empowered.
For those of you who are unable to take an actual step, spend a few minutes first thing this morning imagining the little step that you could take if everything were lined up perfectly. Engage as many of your senses as possible. Don’t worry, though, if you have only a vague sense of things. That’s good enough for now.
Your homework for today, in case you haven’t already done so, is spending a little time going through your list of teeny tiny steps and categorizing them into ones that will take 5 minutes or less to complete, ones that will take 5 – 15 minutes to complete, ones that will take 15 – 30 minutes to complete, and so on. In the evening before you retire for the night, go through your list and select an increment you’ll complete first thing in the morning. Then go to sleep with the peace of knowing you’re all set for a terrific start to your day.
You did it! You got up when your alarm first rang and you also took a small step first thing this morning–whether you actually did something or if you spent time imagining it (PS: categorizing your steps counts as taking a step!)
Here we are at the beginning of a fresh, clean New Year. It’s sparkling, glittering with opportunity and promise. We can do anything we set our minds to! We’ll knock it out of the ballpark this year, for sure.
From this vantage point, we believe that this year will be different for us. Of course we’ll follow through on our plans, goals, and resolutions. We have vim, we have vigor, and we’re confident we’ll keep driving forward all the way through the end of December. But yet, there’s a niggling uncertainty in the back of our minds…how will we actually do this?
Though, for some of us at the leading edge of the New Year, we have a different vantage point. Instead of seeing the brightness of possibility and good fortune, we may be experiencing the bone-wearying lifelessness of the deepening rut we’ve been in for years. We have no goals, we have no plans, and we have no resolutions. Our hopes and dreams died years ago. We have no expectations because we promised ourselves that this year we would not set ourselves up for the disappointment of not following through and the resulting humiliation of being in the same place–or worse–this time next year. Furthermore, it’s exhausting to even think about getting up the nerve and wherewithal to try–yet again–to make something different for ourselves. But still, there’s a small whisper niggling at the back of our minds saying that we’re made for something more, something greater, than this…but how do we actually do this?
The answer is: by taking one step at a time.
It sounds simplistic, even ludicrous. Maybe it’s insulting to be told something we’ve heard countless times before. We’ve already tried it with varying degrees of success and yet we’ve stood by helplessly as our excitement and drive fizzled out. Or, perhaps we’re crushed by the despair of not being able to summon the tiniest scrap of energy to take so much as a feeble limp, much less a step.
All these objections are saying one thing: the steps you are taking, or are imagining you must take, are too large. Break them into smaller pieces. Make them microscopic if you have to. Break them down to the point where the first step is something you believe is reasonable and achievable; something you can do. It doesn’t matter what other people are doing or have done. It doesn’t matter that the step you are taking is so small that even the most powerful electron microscope would have trouble detecting it. The only thing that matters is that you are taking action–moving forward.
So that first step–either the one you will take or the one you are imagining taking–break it down into smaller pieces. Break those into baby pieces. Then break those into teeny tiny pieces. Keep breaking them into smaller and smaller increments until you get to a piece that you know you can commit to doing.
To help you, repeat to yourself often throughout the day, emphasizing the word in italics:
I can do it;
I can do it;
I can do it;
I can do it.
Also repeat to yourself often throughout the day, emphasizing the word in italics:
Yes I can;
Yes I can;
Yes I can.
If one of these strikes a chord within you, then repeat that one as often as you can. Write it down, carry it with you, paste it where you’ll see it often, and refer to it throughout the day.
Your homework for today is to break your step into small, easily doable increments and do only one of those increments today. Or, when you imagine a step you might take if the world were perfect and if you had a stiff wind at your back, break that down into a very small piece that causes you to say, “Huh. I think I can actually do that one.”
For those of you who can take the small incremental step, go ahead and do so. For those of you who can only imagine it, then do that–trying to imagine it using as many senses as you can. Don’t worry if you get only a little glimmer of it. That’s good enough for now.
Congratulations! Pat yourself on the back because you did it! You took the first step! That’s all you had to do today so you’re done! You’re free to do what ever else you’d like to do.