It’s not unusual to become paralyzed into inaction. And it’s the worst feeling imaginable. For most it starts with losing confidence and conviction in ourselves. We want to take action to do things but we’re feeling the weight of these decisions and the implications they may have on those around us. So we don’t do anything but there is a slow simmer that is happening inside. There is frustration mounting and you feel like you’re losing precious time to take action.
Sam is a mid-40’s business professional working for a large Fortune 500 Company. For years, she was able to balance the rigors of work and family. What this meant was sacrificing her wants and desires. While others were being taking care of, she felt her life was idling with no personal growth. Her hobbies and interests always took a second seat to something else. Well, guess what. There will always be something or someone else to do for. We must nourish ourselves in order to be fully present for others. Having neglected her own needs for so many years she didn’t know where to begin. So we worked out a plan.
Step 1: Sam had to acknowledge that personal growth was vital to personal fulfillment. And personal fulfillment is just as important as satisfying the wants and needs of everyone else.
Step 2: Sam had to prioritize where she would derive personal growth. And this was spending time drawing and sketching. This meant that time was carved out of the week to pursue this creative outlet. The spouse and kids were put on notice. Not surprising, there was a lot of angst about having this conversation and that the family might feel neglected. Guess what, there were totally cool with it. They didn’t even flinch. Sam had played out an entire future event where this type of conversation led to disaster. It didn’t.
Step 3: Sam has now carved out time to not only pursue sketching but also other activities that generate personal growth. The family has even joined in on a few of them.
There was time when we did nothing but take action. We were constantly moving and doing. As we get older, we feel weighed down by the obligations that we either create or take on. These impact us in such a way that we stop enriching ourselves. When our personal growth is idling we are stagnating. We all have to respect and fulfill personal and professional obligations but we also have to give back to ourselves and ensure that we are developing and growing.
Where would you like to achieve some personal growth? Read. Create. Build. Experience. It doesn’t matter what it is, it just matters that you stop idling and start moving forward.