3 STEPS TO GET THROUGH THE TOUGH STUFF

WHAT IS TOUGH?

TOUGH is different for every person. It depends on what kind of person you are. What is tough for me may be a breeze for you. The bottom line is that tough is anything you don’t want, but have to do.

We avoid things for a variety of reasons. Among them, the three biggest reasons are FEAR, FEAR, and FEAR. There may be other reasons, but these are the main culprits.

Fear is best understood as realistic or unrealistic worry about the potential consequences of a given action. So, basically, you are worried about what bad thing might happen. Another fear is fear of discomfort. This is about not wanting to feel a certain way…mainly, uncomfortable. Finally, you may fear conflict. Conflict-Avoidance occurs when you don’t tackle the tough stuff because you don’t want to be in opposition to someone.  

Whatever the reasons for your avoidance of the tough stuff, they all have something in common. THEY KEEP YOU FROZEN. You are stuck in place when you could be moving forward. Here is how to get unstuck and push through the tough stuff:

STEP 1: STAND TALL

I am being literal here. Straighten up, lift your chin, get up off that chair. Imagine there is a string that is attached to the top of your head that goes up into the stars. That string is pulling you gently upward and helping achieve your maximum height. Now, let your shoulders drop from that tense, squished up position. Take a deep breath in, fill your belly. Now, pull your belly button back and breathe out that stale air. FEEL YOUR STRENGTH. This is what I call Standing Tall.  In this simple act, you will feel be confident and powerful.  

STEP 2: LEAN IN

When there is something you are avoiding, your brain is sending you a message. It is telling you there is something important you have to do. When we avoid, we pull back. We hide. We lean away. What I am proposing is that instead, you LEAN IN. By this I am not saying you should literally lean in. Instead, leaning in is a mindset as opposed to a physical action. When you lean in, you imagine yourself leaning toward a feared action or behavior. Put your effort, energy, and attention to the task. Leaning in changes your behavior completely.  Instead of avoiding, you are challenging.  

STEP 3: ACT AS IF

We all have a idea of ourselves in our mind. Our roles. These ideas can be helpful, telling us and others who we are. What we can and can’t do. But, these ideas can also trap us or keep us stuck in a place we don’t want to be. Sometimes we don’t even realize the roles we are playing. In fact, the role you play highly influences how others treat and interact with you. If you act unimportant, invisible, or unworthy you will be treated that way. If instead you act as if you have value and a right to exist you will be treated that way.  The funny thing about Acting As If is that if you practice enough, you will soon not be acting. You will be living.