We are the era of influencers. Of sharing your voice. Of fighting to be heard and unique among the masses. We are a generation dying to be heard, and we are heard by content creation. By our art. By our passion. Our beautiful individuality on display through our passion projects or our skills.
So then – what do we do when the inevitable fears of inadequacy creep? How do we silence the inner critic that is constantly after us with the fears rooted too much in realism to dismiss? What if we fall? Is this all a waste of time? Should we quit while we are ahead?
While this generation is known for breaking barriers and making history, we are also known for our anxiety over our inadequacy. For the pressure to be perfect. Whether you are a blogger, a parent, an employee or simply a human – we are all faced with crippling and paralyzing fear – of the unknown and of our own missteps.
I speak to myself as much as I speak to the person reading this blogpost. By self-sabotage we are absolutely assuring our complete failure. The definition of failure is relative, yes – but if we hold back because a situation is a risk or a gamble… we will always be asking a question of… “what if?”
I have “failed” by common definitions several times. Walked away from jobs and stability. Walked away from relationships after calling out unhealthy behaviours. Fought the inner critic and started this blog, as a matter of fact.
We cannot expect instant returns on our efforts. As someone who has grown up with instant gratification in our culture this is hard to grasp. We have to be confident enough in ourselves and in our abilities to confidently move forward still.
So what does this mean? You have a great idea. You have a life altering decision to make, perhaps, or a risky move you’d like to take. So what do we do from here?
You take a deep breath. You draw it out. Visual aids are great, like a pro-con list or a blue-sky realistic look at your life to define your main goals for yourself. Come forward with a mindset that is not fatalistic. Allow yourself to explore what you are passionate about and allow yourself to take the time, guilt-free, to work it out. Chances are, you will be much more effective, and therefore a stronger asset to the world, by working in something you love.
Also, accepting that those steps will take time and may not be today is especially important. For those of us who thrive on chaos and productivity and caffine every hour, this will be hard. But it is a necessary step to success.
Finally, make an action plan – a list of small, attainable goals to get there, one step at a time. A goal is not simply just “success.” A goal would be definable and measurable with a plan behind it – such as, “in order to run in the marathon next year, I will run a mile more each month (starting January 2020)… and aim for a 30 second shorter time. By May, I will be able to run 5 miles in 40 minutes.”
You may benefit from getting a partner or a friend involved and play the motivator for each other in doing this. You can apply these methods to any goal you have in life – whether you are starting out as a hopeful college freshman, trying to graduate high school while working, or overhauling the household budget for the third time this year.
What methods do you use to attain your goals? I would love to hear what you do to keep yourself passionate and productive! Let me know in the comments below and I would love to make a blog post featuring the suggestions.