I have been settling into a new office space and just this week met my neighbors. One is particularly friendly and went beyond the cordial hello’s asking a series of questions about my work, family, health. I found myself opening up and before long I was sharing “my story”.
This recount was a good reminder of why I left my corporate role and what set me on this journey as a professional coach. It helped re-ignite that passion inside me. Starting your own business is hard...pursuing your passion is hard. What isn’t so hard…getting distracted, falling back into comfortable habits, taking “the easy path”.
An accomplished friend once told me:
Success comes more effortlessly to someone who has already had it…you know the path and it is easy to do again!
But what if you want to find success following a new path for yourself? The road not yet traveled. Clearing and paving a new road to success is anything but easy!
As I pave this new path for myself, I love that I am continuously learning. While it isn’t easy, I have found some specific strategies that help keep me stay focused and set me up for success:
1) BE INTENTIONAL. Whatever you have set out to accomplish, your day isn’t only filled with the things you want to do. There are a lot of things you “should” do. Our minds can obsess about the “shoulds”, not matter how small. Be intentional in taking time to write down what you plan to focus on for the week and then Let. It. Go. The anxiety won’t build and your mind will be free to follow possibility.
2) BE VULNERABLE. Open up to people and share where you are struggling. People are good, people want to help. More importantly, ask how they are doing. If you are fortunate to have people in your life who are on their own journey, support them. Seeing their struggles objectively, with compassion and concern, may be just the reminder you need that you are in fact, doing your own amazing work.
3) BE CLEAR. Leave behind any expectations associated with what was and clarify your vision for what will be. In the past, it may have been your title, the size of your team, your paycheck. What is the definition of success in your new world? It is likely different and you may only need to bring a very small percentage of your old life forward to achieve it.
4) BE IMPERFECT. Take one step forward each day no matter how messy and uncomfortable. At least you are moving ahead. Don’t wait and don’t let lack of confidence hold you back. Learn – what you like and what needs some adjustment – and you will more quickly find success in the path you are on. Practice makes progress, not perfect.
5) BE KIND. Look back on each week - celebrate your wins and acknowledge how far you come in your journey. Hold yourself accountable to your ultimate goal and to your vision of success, but don’t beat yourself up. There will be good days and meh days…be kind to yourself!
The next time you have an opportunity to recount your own story, do it. Capture your learnings. Every journey is unique and sometimes it just takes the right support to turn your own experiences into strategies that pave your path to success!