PSA: No one has it all together, all of the time. You’re not the only one tripping and f***ing up sometimes.
Twice recently I saw the “get healthy” suggestion of doing a sweep of your pantry and tossing out all of the processed junk. Both times it pissed me off. Over the past 6-7 months (and especially the last 2-3), I’ve been working more diligently on my business Skip the Box — a lot of days I still feel like I’m not getting anywhere. And it pisses me off.
I’ve written before about my lovely health (and general life) block of “there,” as well as the value of baby steps, and yet I still find myself tripping on “there” and forgetting all about putting one foot in front of the other, one step at a time. Good grief, when will I get this?? I’ll answer this question at the end.*
For whatever reason (and there are probably many), I build up these mental expectations of where I think I should be, some “there” in the future where I’ll have it all figured out all of the time, where things will be perfect and easy and maybe I’ll even start pooping sprinkles or something. And then I just expect myself to be there immediately and all easy peasy.
Yeah, that never happens for me. I can’t just be “there” — and then I get frustrated, angry, upset, and start to wonder why I’m such a failure and can’t make anything happen (which never helps to make anything happen). And then things spiral farther downwards as I decide I might as well not even try on other goals/items on my to do list because clearly I can’t follow through on anything. It all makes for a grand time as I keep digging deeper into this hole.
I know that I know huge leaps (or plans with strict black and white boundaries or restrictions) don’t work for me. Baby steps, on the other hand, do. Teeny, tiny, small, incremental, plodding, one foot after the other, baby steps. When I slow down to think and feel clearly, I’ve seen over and over again that taking baby steps helps me build my confidence muscle to get things done, whether that’s adding in exercise, cleaning up my diet, or creating and building my business. As I keep taking baby steps, I find that the steps that I thought were hard before aren’t really any more, and that stretching myself becomes easier and easier (and it’s not until this point that some slightly bigger strides can be made).
Rome wasn’t built overnight; neither is anything else for me. Brick by brick, step by step — that’s the way I make progress.
The suggestion to do a clean sweep of the pantry pissed me off because it felt too drastic to me (though it may work great for someone else!). To clean out my pantry, I need to do it one item at a time, like starting with buying one new box of cereal the next time it’s needed, and looking for something with real food ingredients, no GMOs, and organic, if possible. One box of cereal at a time, not the whole damn pantry in a weekend.
On the business end, I’d ultimately like to be able to fully support my family financially while working in the freedom of my own business in hours that I set. I’d like my husband to be able to retire early if he’d like. To make this goal a reality, I’ll need to have a focused business and offer products and/or services that generate revenue. And frankly, I don’t know exactly what this all looks like yet!!
This year has been a lot of throwing things at the wall and seeing what sticks, what resonates, what feels good to me. But when I think I should be “there” already, when I think I should just be able to figure out how high to jump and then take the leap (and then everything will magically happen all at once), I bring myself to a halt. And no wonder that sort of thinking isn’t motivating to me. Instead of berating myself for everything I should be doing already (like writing more books, creating e-courses, speaking, etc.), I just need to focus on the next baby step, like consistently sending out my newsletter.
*Now back to answering the question I asked before: when will I get that “there” thinking doesn’t work for me and that baby steps do? Here’s what I think the answer is: never fully and always eventually.
Blocks are interesting things. I don’t know if we ever fully get rid of them (though maybe we do). What I’ve found for myself is that I do keep tripping on some of the same stuff over and over. However, as I keep reminding myself that baby steps will get me wherever I want to go and that the picture of “there” is an illusion (yes, it can be helpful to set a goal, however, if I cling too tightly to how I think it “should” be, I’ll miss out on the magic of what is), I find that I can more quickly remember these learnings in future times. As I keep practicing and reminding myself, I see that I spend less and less time digging myself into a hole and more time actually making progress! And perhaps this is the real win here – not to try and get rid of a block but to spend less time down when I trip (and maybe even sometimes see the block enough in advance to avoid it!).
And slowly but surely, baby step by baby step, I see that I’m making progress. 🙂