THE WEATHER has taken a serious turn here in New England. The days are brisk and I can already smell winter in the air. In fact, it’s raining right now and I spy small, while flakes scattered in the mix. With the fall back of daylight saving time coming up, the sun will soon be tucked away for the night by 5:30 PM. That feels both cozy and depressing.
I, like many people, have a tendency to hunker down and hibernate this time of year. The chilly, gray days require extra energy to perk up and engage; energy that’s hard to come by when the sun’s precious vitamin D is scarce.
More time spent at home can be an invitation to look within, to evaluate priorities, and to revel in the silence. In theory, that sounds lovely. In practice, it can be uncomfortable.
With so many tempting distractions available (I’m looking at you Facebook, Netflix, and Instagram), I spend less and less time in quiet contemplation, despite knowing that any guidance or direction I seek is found within. I have several online courses and books queued up that would make great companions on my introspective journey, yet inevitably, finding out who won the battle rounds on The Voice takes precedence.
Sometimes it’s just easier to check out than tune in, but when I do turn my focus on myself, I am always better for it. I feel grounded, connected, clearer, and empowered. When I’m in that space, I’m willing to take more risks, expand my comfort zone, and basically, get shit done.
Why must we need to be reminded of that so often? Why do we opt to resist, struggle, and complain? Do we not trust ourselves enough to navigate both the good and the bad, the challenging and the easy?
I think that’s what it all boils down to — self-trust. The more you show yourself that you’re loved unconditionally; that you believe you have what it takes; that you’re willing to take small steps, the quieter your resistance becomes. If you let the voice win that says, “you never finish what you start,” or “sure, make a commitment to take action. I give it about a week before it all goes to hell,” then it will always win.
If you challenge that voice instead of validating it, I can almost guarantee that you’ll spend less time running toward mindless distractions and away from yourself. The next time you find yourself up against your resistance, try the following:
- Answer this question: “What’s one small step I can take right now to support my vision/goal/dream?”
- If you’re still feeling unmotivated to take that step, break it down. Ask yourself, “What’s my first step in taking that action?” Keep asking this same question until you’ve come up with something that feels really doable.
- When your doubts pop up again (and they will), give them space. Acknowledging instead of denying takes the wind out of their sails, in a good way. Your fear or hesitation isn’t looking to be solved or fixed. It just wants to be heard. A loving response can be something as simple as “We got this. One step at a time.”
By repeating these steps as often as necessary, your self-trust gets stronger and stronger and your resistance gets weaker and weaker.
What goal or plan will you tackle first using this approach? Me? I’m off to read just the next chapter in my book.