There is increasingly doom-laden evidence of society being unhappier now than ever before. The most optimistic period in the US according to various data, was the 1970’s and joie de vivre has declined steadily ever since.
Despite obstacles you might face, there has never been more capacity and access to resources for change. You can live life by design. Lifestyle disruptions may force you to revisit values and behaviors that were embedded and unquestioned, but you can certainly address them.
Dare to Dream
Grasping the opportunity for new life direction and purpose, guided toward an empowered future in the driving seat sounds like a big goal to set and might be all too easily abandoned when obstacles appear to be insurmountable.
The prospect of actualizing our dreams can be daunting. Self-doubt often pushes our goals and desires to the recesses of the mind, where flights of fancy gather dust.
This paradigm is common and completely understandable, but it is not something set in stone. Transforming obstacles into opportunities for resetting your life and creating new processes is entirely possible with planning and patience.
Insecurity and fear of failure can lead to self-sabotage of our efforts, often without much investigation or resistance from our conscious minds. Those are times when you must find strength.
Face Your Fears
By cultivating awareness of and confronting internal conflicts and challenges, you can learn to overcome them with your own set of mental tools and advance towards the happiness you hope to achieve in reaching your goal.
Self-sabotage is the act of getting in our own way, subconsciously saving ourselves from catastrophe or disappointment further down the line. Soul searching to find the deep-rooted cause of this destructive pattern can be uncomfortable but necessary to extinguish and remedy the fear of untrodden territory.
Self-doubt and insecurity are the outcomes of unresolved traumatic or difficult experiences that you have encountered, chiefly emotional experiences rather than physical. If a dog bit you when you were a child, a fear of dogs in adulthood is somewhat predictable but unless your goal is to work at a dog pound, you need never suffer the impact of that fear.
Conversely, if you were tormented for failing an exam or losing at sports, harboring a very real fear of humiliation as an adult can impede your accomplishments. No matter how deeply buried, your mind will deploy that fear as a safety mechanism when you pursue goals in later life. It is the brain’s “Danger Ahead” warning sign.
Facing the cause of insecurities and fears can be tough to take, it’s squirrelled away in the recesses of your subconscious for a reason. Meditation and journaling are empowering forms of mindfulness that can facilitate the reprogramming of negative behaviors and self-inflicted roadblocks. Patience is needed, but habits can be broken as quickly as they were established if you address them daily.
Assess the Risks
If the goal is to write a book but the writer frequently abandons it after achieving very little, the unaddressed fear could be of nobody liking their work. They will find excuses to distract them from writing, whenever the doubt stirs in the back of their mind. The laundry might need folding, but in reality their subconscious makes them stop writing in order to avoid the humiliation of failing.
Addressing and overcoming the hurdles could result in many different outcomes for the writer. For instance, the realization that they want to write for pleasure instead of money, consequently removing fear of judgement and setting a far more realistic and enjoyable goal.
If their mind had been set on becoming the next John Grisham, their fears were due to an unrealistic and overwhelming objective. Reassessing their concept of success and breaking the journey down into smaller steps would assuage the disappointment of chasing an impossible dream.
Look Within and Without
Thought patterns can be remapped by asking; how realistic is that fear? Who am I worrying about? Am I catastrophizing? Whose approval do I need or crave? Is self-doubt stifling my progress?
Confronting internal conflict can diminish its power and shining a beacon on the reality of failing to reach your goal can extinguish an overblown fear of failure.
Ceaseless patterns of self-sabotage compound your insecurities and damage self-esteem. This cycle of negativity affirms your doubts by obstructing your success in reaching your goal. Overcoming challenges to achieve your aim, makes the goal more worthwhile in the end.
Assessing possible pitfalls and issues before embarking on the journey might equip you better for facing demons and fears along the way. Voicing your concerns to someone you trust can give you a new perspective and even accountability that helps your commitment.
Keep Moving Forward
Goal setting is a form of always moving forward and developing our skills. Without goals and aims, we remain stagnant and unchanging leading to dissatisfaction with life. Adopting a healthy and realistic map of where you want to go and how you want to get there is far more likely to lead to worthy accomplishments and motivation to continue on to the next exciting challenge.
Obstacles and diversions along the way are absolutely inevitable, whether they are self-imposed or external, physical or emotional. Starting out with a flexible yet purpose-driven attitude will keep you motivated to overcome problems you are faced with rather than rigidly sticking to your path and finding yourself completely unable to move forward.