..so stop making excuses for not taking action. Stop doubting your knowledge, ability or skills. Stop playing it safe, for fear of failure. Take action. What is the worst that can happen? You stumble and fall short of your goals? If that does happen, learn from the experience and get back to work.
You already have the answers to many of your questions. You also know what you have to do, and even know how to do it. For those questions which you can’t answer yourself immediately, a quick internet search could help. The real obstacle here is not a lack of knowledge or ability, but a crippling fear. You are being held back from leaving your comfort zone and fulfilling your potential because fear is leading you to doubt yourself.
While I do believe in mentoring and coaching, I also believe that they come much later in the personal development process. First, listen to yourself before you seek counsel from anybody else. In my own experience, the following process has really helped;
- Quieten your mind. Whether it’s a quiet room in your house, or a walk in the forest, go there and get away from the fast pace of daily life. Now, you can clear and quieten your mind.
- Reflection and goal-setting. You can’t discuss personal development without mentioning reflection and goal-setting. Both are crucial, as this is where you identify your strengths, skills and abilities as well as your weaknesses and areas for improvement. You define what success looks like to you and set goals which can get you there.
- Research. Having identified gaps in your knowledge, search online and read books to help find the answers you seek.
- Trust your instincts. Now is the time to act. No excuses or waiting for the perfect opportunity or time. Trust your instincts and listen to your inner voice. What are they telling you? Just put the work in to get yourself closer to your goals.
- Checkpoints. At regular intervals, reflect on your progress so far. What have you learned? Every experience, even a bad one can offer us a valuable opportunity to learn and grow. Learn, adapt and then get back to work. If you have hit a wall on your journey and can see no clear way forward, this is the perfect time to seek a coach or a mentor whose fresh perspective can make all the difference to your progress.
Stop telling yourself that you don’t have the answers or know what to do. In looking everywhere for answers, you are just procrastinating and wasting time. Quiet your mind, reflect and the answers will come to you.
If you are ever in doubt as to how much you already know, ask yourself what advice you would give to someone else if they were in your situation. This simple act of taking a step back and looking at a problem from a different perspective, could be all you need.
You have a choice; Are you going to trust your instincts and act in order to take a step towards your goals and dreams? OR are you going to play it safe while you procrastinate and search for more answers?