I have spent the last 19 months of my life writing a leadership book – And then when it was pretty much ready to be published, I stopped.
I stopped taking action and I gave myself loads of “reasons” why.
Of course these reasons were just excuses… Here is why I stopped taking action and the reasons why I shouldn’t. If you have aimed for a goal, been making progress, then felt like quitting… maybe this could help:
“Everything you want is on the other side of fear”
I hate to admit it, but the main reason I stopped was due to fear – fear people might not like my book, fear that people might laugh, fear that I might not be any good. Looking at it logically it is likely that some people wouldn’t like my work or me… but it wouldn’t be everyone and it shouldn’t be something that I should be fearful of.
But that didn’t stop me being afraid.
Fear, essentially is a powerful metabolic function, that is designed to protect us from danger. So when genuine threats come along we change our behaviour so we can survive – behaviours such as running away, hiding or freezing.
The bottom line is that, no matter what, fear is going to play a part in your life. It is how we manage it that makes all the difference.
We can do this by creating leverage and developing our mindset.
Leverage – Purposely create the thought process that the act of quitting will be a more painful experience than the possible results of taking action.
To do this you will need to write, in as much detail as possible, how awful your life will be if you don’t take action towards your goals. Do this over various timeframes, for example how horrible your life will be next week, in one year and in five years.
Completing this simple process will shift your minds focus and perspective, transforming your energy towards taking positive action.
Mindset – Are the goals you have set yourself fixed or growth goals? If you have lots of fixed goals (a fixed goal is a goal that has an end point and is ridged in the success criteria) then you are not be setting yourself up for success.
The reason why is with any fixed goal there will always be factors out of your control, this can then create frustration, fear and disappointment. All of which will direct you towards quitting.
A growth goal on the other hand does set you up for success. Growth goals are about continuous development and growth, both of these factors are within your control… You can grow, develop and learn everyday if you so desired. This will help remove the fear you feel, because each step of the goal is now fully achievable, so you can continue to progress towards your goals with more control.
I don’t know what to do
In my example, this surfaced with publishing – should I go through an established publisher or self publish? There are benefits for both – and there are negatives.
A publisher will do most of the work for you in getting your book on sale, but at a very high cost, which would mean literally no profits from my book (unless by some miracle I became a multimillion selling hit!). Self publishing means I would make more money per book sale, but I would have to learn how to publish!
I didn’t know what to do, so I did nothing.
This is one of the easiest excuses to make – because the truth is, there will be times when we don’t know what to do!
An ultra affective strategy in this situation is to role model from those people who have already done what you need to do.
Go onto any internet search engine and type in what you want to learn or become and, as quick as a flash, you will have a reservoir of resource, from world-class experts, at your fingertips.
Don’t make the excuse that you don’t know what to do – instead put it on your ‘to-do list’ to find out what you should do!
Don’t have the energy
After writing my book, I got distracted by day to day hassles and problems. In fact I got so involved in the daily struggles, that even when I had the time to focus on my book, I felt so tired, that I couldn’t face more work.
This is a common problem… Most people fail to chase their dreams because they have busy lives and this gets in the way of achieving real quality. After a tough day being busy most of us want to relax and “un-plug” rather than chase our big life goals.
Here are two strategies to combat fatigue:
1 . Prioritise the important. Very simply, your vision, your destiny or your dream should be the most important goal in your life. So make it the first thing you do. Build in the time and make your big life goals the priority and focus on these first!
2 . Take care of your physiology. Are you drinking enough water? Are you eating healthy, energy providing foods? Are you committing to a productive exercise routine? If you look after your physiology, you will have more energy – Obvious, but true!
I don’t have the time
We are all so busy. We live in the most fast-paced, ever-changing and hectic time in human history. Pretty much everyone struggles for time. It is an almost foolproof excuse for quitting on our personal goals and dreams… That is one of the things I told myself about publishing my book!
Yet, if we are absolutely honest – do we use all the time we have available to us, effectively?
Just think about the amount of time each day you spend looking at a screen… Television, phone, laptop, tablet…
Is this a productive use of our time?
If you want to have enough time to achieve amazing things do this: Stop using any social media and TV (this includes programs on the internet!) for 30 days and instead use that time to take action on your goals.
In 30 days I guarantee you will be amazed at how much progress you make in achieving your goals. I also guarantee, if you can do the 30 days, that you won’t miss TV and the internet half as much as you imagine you will!
If you follow through and take the required action everyday towards your goal, then eventually you will get there!
Yet sometimes rather than committing to keep moving forward, we create an internal story that tells us to quit.
These stories can seem compelling, but the truth is, they are excuses. Challenge yourself to take action even when you feel scared, don’t know what to do, don’t have the energy or don’t have the time.
If you do you can achieve your goals – Like I did… My book will be published later in the year!
If you want to get a discount on my book later in the year (plus a free high performance PDF now, extra motivational videos and coaching on achieving your potential direct to your inbox) CLICK ME NOW!