how to overcome obstacles and achieve your goals without skipping a beat
My breakfast is planned for the next several months. Seriously. I eat the same thing pretty much every day. If the Quaker company goes out of business, then I'll really have to rethink my mornings because I'll be completely thrown out of whack. Although, like most type-A people, I do, of course, have a back-up plan for breakfast, and that's the case with most of my plans and goals as well. I always make sure I look at things from multiple angles to make sure there's a solid backup plan in place should things go astray.
This, however, is not the case for when something comes out of left field that I really couldn't see coming. I mean, there will always be things that you cannot foresee that may end up hitting you hard, and you're left to pick up the pieces wondering what went wrong or what you missed. It can be hard to think, hard to see the big picture, and most of all, hard to pull it together again when that happens. But that, my dear, is when you need to the most.
I'm sitting here writing this after life has given me a huge barrel full of lemons. I thought everything was well-planned and on track for my goals, but life had another plan. And it shook things up quite a bit. There was no backup plan I could have made for this. No plan B to make it any easier. I just had to realize that life changes that fast and being adaptable enough to see how to get back on track is the best thing I can do to keep my head up and start making lemonade out of those lemons.
When you find yourself looking head on at an obstacle, it can be so hard not to just throw up your hands and make a million excuses. You're flustered, frustrated, and feeling defeated, but you've gotta know that whatever obstacle is in your way will make you stronger. You will come out the other side with a new perspective, new experiences, and new knowledge to carry you through to achieving your goals. If you're wondering how it's even possible to get back on track again, then I've got a solution for you.
First, I want you to know that this plan of attack can give you a way forward when you're facing any obstacle. It's a tool that you can use time and time again to find your way back to a path toward your goals. Now, it may not be the same exact path that you had planned out to begin with, but it may end up being even better. The point is that you pick your head up and find the good in what has led you off-track. So, go ahead and watch this short video about how to use this little strategy, finish reading the post for more tips, and then grab your free worksheet to put it all together.
Okay, awesome. So you've watched the video, but you're still wondering how in the heck you're gonna modify your original plan to make it work again. Well, my dear, the steps below are gonna help you to find your way again.
1. Evaluate the hurdle.
With all the noise that might be going on in your head, what you really need to do is just stop for a second and evaluate things. Take a step back and see what's actually happened that threw you off. Was there a change in your environment, support system, your resources, or anything else that put you at a loss? Did your timing get off track? Did something of greater importance come up to push back your original plans? Whatever it may be, you need to evaluate the situation so that you can make knowledgable decisions about the way forward.
2. Practice a little gratitude for what's going right.
When you feel defeated, putting yourself in a better head space can allow you to regroup and pick yourself back up. So the next step in finding your way again is to practice gratitude. I'm talking about gratitude for what you do have going for you and what you already are truly proud of creating. There's always something that you can be thankful for in your journey no matter how small it may be. Focus on that and know that this is just a tiny roadblock in the overall path you're taking to achieve your goals.
3. Get your confidence back by modifying your plan.
Now for the big way ahead. I know it can seem daunting when you've just had an upset to your plans, but you need to reestablish your confidence by giving yourself a direction again. For this, you need to reconsider your original plan and create a modification that will either put you back on track in the same direction you were headed toward your goal originally or establish a new path toward achieving that goal. Either way, you will once again have clear steps to take to getting to where you want to be.
As I talked about in the video above, give yourself about 15 minutes to sit down and get out a piece of paper, your computer, or whatever you usually use for brainstorming your goals. Write down 1-2 sentences specifying what change occurred to your plans. Then, you're going to make a list of at least 3-4 ways you can look at this change as a positive, an opportunity, or a way to learn and experience something new. For each of these opportunities you write down, you're going to define specific, small steps you can take to use that opportunity and put you back onto a path for achieving your overall goal.
For example, since I live in Japan, let's say I was planning a major outdoor charity event to raise money for an important cause to me. It just so happens that there's a super typhoon headed this way that will completely wreck any event plans I had been organizing for the last 3 months. Now, I will not make the event date to raise money for my cause. But....Since I've got this handy little strategy called making modifications in my back pocket, I can regroup and use this to my advantage. See, maybe I was trying to rush at the last minute to find additional volunteers or a band to play. Now, that I'd have an additional four or five days to work at home while the storm passes, I could use that to my advantage to make phone calls, send emails, and create a new plan of attack to still make my event happen maybe even better than before.
4. Create a new big picture.
Okay, so now that you've listed out the opportunities and the steps you'll take to make your revised plan, it's time to bring it all back to the big picture. You know how I like to see the big picture! You're gonna take that newly revised plan, and you're gonna envision it all coming together in the end. Write down any specific ways in which it may look different from your original goal. The key is to make sure that you're still accomplishing the main objective of what you set out to achieve, but you'll define what pieces of it you have to approach differently now. Lay it all out for yourself so you understand how the opportunities you've created out of your hurdle are now altering the end picture a bit...Which is exactly what you need to make the path clear in your head again.
Sweet! Now, you know you've always got a way ahead when life gives you lemons. Remember, obstacles just show you what you're made of to help you become even more incredible on the journey to achieving your goals. We can respect life's changes and grow with them, or we can push back with little result. If you can roll with the punches and find ways to pick yourself up again, then you can come out the other side with some seriously big shoulders and an immense amount of confidence going forward.
Grab your free worksheet below and put your energy toward going after what you want. Enjoy.