I love this weekly intention as it has been a continued focus for me over the last few months. As I am exploring this new world that is opening up for me in my career, I often find myself wanting to rush through the process – to cross the finish line. What I have noticed is that when things feel really big & overwhelming, I have a tendency to either withdraw or double down my efforts and force it into reality. Recently I had a revelation that gave me pause: What’s the hurry anyway? I found myself asking this question because I was becoming an emotional wreck, feeling unworthy and generally frustrated with where I am at in my journey. After a great session with my coach I realized something – I had unrealistic expectations and I was measuring myself against a version of myself that isn’t attainable. For anyone. This was profound for me because it helped me feel grounded and back in touch with what really mattered to me – making a difference. It was a great reminder that most things in life are a marathon, not a race.
I find that it is tempting to get carried away in our swirling thoughts and this unrealistic need to be perfect. Are you feeling like you’re in the same rut, constantly striving for perfection and always coming up a little short?
Give this a try:
Pause – You probably have noticed by now that every intention I focus on starts with the pause. Pausing is one of the first intentions I created for myself because it is the foundation for everything. It’s difficult to be effective and make any progress without it. Start by taking a daily pause. Reflect on where you have been and where you are trying to go. If it helps, pause and write down what you notice.
Look around – Is your goal attainable? Is whatever you’re trying to achieve a reasonable goal for yourself? Does anyone you know ever reached the goal as quickly as you’re expecting? Are you putting unnecessary pressure on yourself to get to a certain level, to be a certain way? If so, I would encourage you to ask yourself “What’s the hurry?” and see what comes up. In my situation I realized that I was placing my value and self-worth outside of myself and then holding myself accountable against a reality that just isn’t feasible.
It’s always about the journey NOT the destination – I will often find myself fixated on the end goal. I suppose because it feels like relief; once I get to the finish line, I can take a breath, and look to validate that all of the hard work has paid off. Imagine you’re on a leisurely road trip. If you’re going 90 miles an hour down the freeway, there is probably a lot you’ll miss. If you’re going 25 miles an hour, you’ll probably see a lot more. If you stop and take breaks and really enjoy the scenery, you’ll have a more fulfilling, rich experience. I know I’ve had this feeling of, “let’s just get there already” and have wondered what did I miss along the way?
Focus on what’s important by asking yourself these questions:
- What am I missing along the way?
- Do I have unrealistic expectations keeping me constantly striving for more?
- What do I need to feel grounded and whole?
- What would happen if I released my attachment to the destination and just enjoyed the journey?