overwhelmed

How to Avoid Giving Up: A Formula Tried and Tested

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Facing a crisis

My life began to get pulled into different directions as my mind kept pacing from one aspect of it to another. I was trying to balance day-to-day motions and emotions, while constructing the next chapter of my life. I found myself losing control because I was motivated by fear.

I had built up a level of success that I feared losing. Rather than deal with these feelings, I sped passed them and missed certain cues telling me to slowdown and evaluate. If I had just taken the time to understand what this new area of success meant and what I should’ve been focusing on, I could’ve re-organized my life and continued on attentively. I would’ve done what I did much sooner…

My priorities were mixed up, my mind couldn’t sit still and it all became overwhelming. It was like my life was stuck in a game of Wheel of Fortune: blogging, completing my book proposal, ‘Feeding the Lion’ videos, consulting, running a home, finances, family, friends, me time? Exercise, meditation, reading, dating, query letters, researching agents/publishers, writing, more errands to run and so on. I was never certain where the wheel would stop, I needed an indication of what I should be working on in order to keep progressing successfully. I just felt compelled to always "spin the wheel" because I was afraid of losing momentum. I just kept on going and did a bit of everything; unfocused and unsure, my aspirations were beginning to get blurry.

I became hesitant of what goals I had to accomplish and what aspects of my life I was supposed to be focusing on. I remember trying to write a blog post but kept trailing off topic because I wasn’t in the right frame of mind. I felt like an actor playing many roles at once; I became disordered and almost went on stage wearing the wrong costume.

Life was unclear because I was motivated by the fear of losing success, rather than the reasons for pursuing it. I firmly believe that fear is a response to the lack of control, and that’s exactly how I felt. That loss of control caused me to crash. It caused a lot of anxiety as one deadline loomed after another, and if I’m being completely honest, the thought of giving all this up crossed my mind.


Taking my own advice

When you find yourself stuck in a theme of uncertainty and insecurity, you find yourself in an identity crisis. You’re lost between two worlds, between you recurrent reality and the life of your aspirations. Comfort ZoneYou end up swaying between motivation and procrastination. You’re either sitting around procrastinating, waiting for motivation to come along, or your motivated to work just so you can feel better about procrastinating. Your mind faces an aggressive wrecking ball of doubt, as it breaks down the confident spirit you were once plugged into.

…I started to read through my own blog posts and it was like I was talking to myself. Evidently I was reading my own journal. My aspirations were communicating to me right there on the screen, but my conscious thoughts were not relating. For the very first time I started to question my own advice to the point of disbelief.

It was a very threatening thought process but it was that exact eye opener I needed. I’ve been blogging for some time now and these lessons that I had already learned and shared, lessons that led me to my current accomplishments in life, needed to be retested. The answer was right there in front of my own eyes.

I needed to prove myself, to myself. There was no way I could continue guiding others if I was struggling to guide myself. It was time to take my own advice and rebuild my spirit back to the level I had maintained for so long.

I turned to my aspirations and reminded myself of where I was aiming to be in the next few years. Almost instantly, I noticed how taking the time out to evaluate and reflect allowed me to focus on where I was going wrong.

I was entering a new chapter in my life and I had forgotten what it took to get me here. I needed to remind myself of my identity. I needed to reaffirm my aspirations and listen to that little voice inside my head. I needed to re-align my responsibilities with my dream. The list kept on building as I read through my blog, I realized how many cues I missed out on.

With the intention to uphold the lessons I had shared through this blog, I constructed a plan that resonated with this new chapter I started. As I plan to move to Los Angeles, CA in the next four years, everything I was trying to complete contributed towards this next major goal in my life.

So I flew out to L.A. and connected to my goal emotionally to face what I had almost turned away from.

Alone

I went alone to escape any zones of comfort I had nestled into. I rebooted my identity as I was forced to speak to people about myself and my aspirations. I connected to my environment and completed the goals I had set myself. I networked, I motivated people, and I helped a couple out in their relationship. Then others started to approach me for guidance and motivation. I knew there and then that I was on the right path, because I felt fulfilled doing it, I naturally felt like myself as I was in my element.

I worked and I had fun too, I even did things I felt I never had time for. Not only had I rebuilt my spirit, I raised it. I returned home having accomplished several goals that I had struggled to focus on and complete. More importantly, I returned home having strengthened my identity, with a rediscovered sense of self-assurance.


The Formula

Identity and DreamRemember success is a series of different levels, when you reach one level it doesn’t grant you access to the next. You need to re-establish yourself and familiarize yourself with the new platform from which you’re working from. Once you become aware, you will discover what you need to do to make it to that higher tier and avoid giving up. You declutter your mind and refocus your energy.

The best thing is that the formula for this is quite simple because your identity and your aspirations are forever interconnected, they can help each other out.

If you ever find yourself at a loss of identity, remind yourself of your aspirations and allow yourself to psychically connect with a small piece of it. Whether like me you book a short trip to somewhere you aspire to be, or something totally random. Whatever you decide to do, make sure it’s doable and that it connects directly to your aspirations.

On the other hand, if it’s your aspirations you’re struggling to remember, do something that makes you feel like yourself and connect with your identity. There’s nothing better to remind yourself of what you want from life, than to immerse yourself within your own identity.

Good luck on your ventures and never let fear lead you astray.

Vancouver Relationship and Life Coach

How to Deal With the Emotions You Ignore

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Recently my emotions ran amuck and every day, rather than take time out of my already overwhelmed schedule to express them, I stored them somewhere in my mind to process later on in order to power through and accomplish tasks. When we’re on this roller-coaster toward success we knowingly put our feelings to one side which, if left unresolved, come back later and negatively impact our state of mind.

You know how in cognitive psychology the mind is likened to a computer, well imagine you’re working hard on your computer and during your work you’re met with a pop up, like an error message or warning. It’s the computer alerting you to something, instead of paying attention we tend to have a habit of clicking the little ‘x’ at the corner of the window or passively clicking ‘OK’ or ‘Close’ to get rid of it. We then continue to repeat this process as this pop up returns until something goes horribly wrong and we're forced to deal with it. That’s how it gets when we’re so focused on reaching goals. We sometimes ignore how we feel until we’re inundated with emotions which lead us to stress and frustration.

Shutdown: Let’s say I recently clicked the ‘x’ too many times and my computer shutdown. I had ignored so many emotions to get through my tasks that I became frustrated, angry and a little lost. I had no idea what to do next and I couldn't confront anyone because I wasn't sure of where to begin. I was going to start writing, but then the message in this post would have been very different to the one you read now because emotions affect output. So I took my car keys and went for a drive, driving keeps me focused on a task yet allows me to think. I know people who take naps to cool off, exercise is also a favorite of mine. Also note, whatever you try to do to clear your mind and pay attention to your inner self, you must proceed alone without any influence.

The "the cooling off period" is crucial to the healing process. Its helps you work through emotions and allow you to come up with sensible and sustaining solutions. I always thought music would help, but music is a motivator for me I know that driving allows me work through anything that I have to deal with. I took note of that, I can only begin to get motivated if I have cooled off. I haven’t met a person yet that can go from a very stressful emotional state to a motivated state that quickly, I find those who can, often just suppress what they feel causing further problems for themselves in the long run.

Reboot: When I went for my drive I switched the phone off to avoid dealing with any "enablers" or "triggers" people swaying me one way or another giving me guidance based on information I would pass onto them. Seeking advice on your own feelings is sometimes a bad idea as the advice given would just be biased, especially making it unfair to others affected by your own frustration. After about an hour on my own processing my thoughts, I had come up with solutions that would work best for me and others around me I was able to reboot and pick up my tasks from the point I had left them. I came home, and I was back up and running, furthermore I could start motivating myself again and get that natural oomph back into my life and my work.

Upgrade: The last stage was to set up a solution. Just like your computer getting a virus: you install software to fix it and periodically you update that software to ensure it adapts to new threats and changing formats. So if we're not dealing with our emotions and end up overwhelmed and frustrated, then we must put something in place to ensure we do not continually repeat this pattern. For now, I go on more drives; it’s how I best deal with my crap. If I’m working on my next big project and I feel my emotional baggage is just getting a bit too heavy, I go on a drive and deal with it, I won’t push it aside and I avoid so much aggravation.

Develop a system that works for you, deal with the warning signs; you of all people know when you’re beginning to feel things that affect your mood, so pay attention, run those “upgrades” you recently installed to process the emotion. Check for updates, be on the lookout for new ways to better deal with your emotions (you won’t figure it out overnight) but whenever you feel overwhelmed, find that one thing that will help you cool off, but ensure you do not use the thing that motivates you as you'll need that for when you’re ready to pick yourself back up.

Vancouver Relationship and Life Coach