What's stopping you?
There are many times in our personal and professional lives where we are not where we want to be.
There may be obstacles to overcome, walls to climb, craters to hover over and fall into. All lead back to one simple thing:
How we approach the next step.
If that next step is a big one – getting that promotion, going back to work after a long lay-off, breaking off a relationship, giving someone bad news, moving jobs etc, then you feel like the smallest person in the world stood at the bottom of the biggest mountain on earth.
At that point, stood at the bottom of the mountain, it’s impossible to see how you’re going to get to the top (you may not even be able to see that far), how long it’s going to take, or what you’re going to find on the way that will slow you down.
So the only thing you can do that will help you get there is take that first step. Make it a small one and celebrate when you’ve done it.
Now you’ve taken that first one you’re hungry for the second, you think you can do it quicker, think you can maybe miss a couple of steps out and take a bigger stride. You’ll wobble a bit, you’ll fall down and go backwards sometimes but you get up, you dust yourself down and you go again. That next step again. A small step again this time. Build your confidence, gain some trust and respect for and from the mountain.
What stops us taking that first step is the fear of what might happen.
Think about what happens when something goes wrong. We revert to fight, flight or freeze mode and most of the time your reaction is instinctive. You can’t control how you react as it’s a behaviour that’s ingrained in you from childhood and from every major life episode since then.
Some people come out fighting, try and wrestle control back.
Some run away, as far as possible and as quickly as possible. What I can’t see can’t hurt me anymore.
Some people freeze, rabbit in headlights. I don’t know what to do so if I stand still or close my eyes it will all go away.
What if you could change how you react?
It won’t happen overnight and there’ll be some pretty uncomfortable steps along the way. But you’ll be so happy the first time you confront something and don’t run away or freeze, or the first time you decide not to confront and to walk away wrestling control back that way.
It takes a big person to walk away when frightened or threatened. It takes guts, it takes resolve. It takes trust in yourself that you will find a way to sort or to fix. It also takes guts to stand up for yourself, for your family and for your friends.
Coaching is about giving you the tools to take that first step. To wrestle that control back. To influence your life in the way you want to influence it.
You cannot change other people so don’t waste your energy. Only they can change themselves and they have to want to change in the first place. The only thing you have the absolute power to do is change yourself and become the person you want to be. If you like yourself just as you are thank you very much then why change for other people? Be strong and be happy with the person you are. If you don’t have the strength all the time then that’s where your first step is.
If you can’t find the strength to take that first step then let a Coach help you find it. They can give you the strength to make that first step, to stand there for a while celebrating (quietly or shouting from the rooftop – up to you) and then recharge for the next step and then the next one, and the next one.
Before you know it you’ll be part way up the mountain and you will not go back down. If you feel as if you want or have to go back all you need to know is what inner strength or ability to call upon in order to keep going.
That strength is already within you. It’s always been there. Sometimes it needs coaxing out, sometimes you need to go into the deep recesses of your brain and memory to find the strength and resilience when you need it. But it is there.
Coaches experience many people with an enormous fear about the future, a hopelessness about what’s next or what’s impossible not what’s possible. Generally speaking, what Coaches see unravel in front of them over a period of time always astounds them and makes them very proud, happy and privileged to be a Coach.
Coaching doesn’t have to be a long term relationship. Clients come and go. Some have a few sessions and are happy to sail on their own again after that. Some want the ability just to check back in a few times when another obstacle comes up. Some clients can be seen for a number of years but as time goes on the amount of sessions reduces. Each way has the same objective and result – finding the best way for each Client to take one step at a time and work with what you’ve got in front of you.
What’s stopping You?
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About Neil Robinson
Neil specialises in Career Coaching and is a qualified and certified professional Life Coach. Over 30 years industry experience in the public and private sector and a proven track record of helping people achieve their ultimate goals.