We all have periods in our life when we feel a little stuck. Whether it’s due to our current career situation, relationship status, the everyday grind, or all the above, the
underlying feelings are often the same. Throughout the day, feelings of unhappiness, frustration, and an overall lack of motivation weigh us down. Those feelings are difficult to say the least, but even worse is the desperate desire to move forward, while simultaneously feeling overwhelmed at the prospect of figuring out how.
If this sounds all too familiar, and you’re ready to take the necessary steps toward a
positive change, keep reading. There is HOPE! Below you will find 5 manageable tips that are actionable and transformative.
TIP # 1: Determine a Direction
First thing’s first. If you want to move forward you must determine a direction. This is a key component of moving forward that people often overlook. It’s not so hard to see where you are and to imagine where you want to be, but progress comes when you see where you are, imagine where you want to be, and then actively plan the route that will help you arrive at your ultimate destination. Without direction, it is not possible to move toward your goal.
Think of where you currently are as the starting place on a personal journey. Now, sit down and begin to map out your course. Start by doing a little soul searching to determine what it is that you are looking to change. Next, brainstorm to determine what goal that change will ultimately accomplish. Finally, determine a personal roadmap for how you will reach your goal. When determining your direction, remember that your roadmap does not have to start off perfect. However, it will be most effective if the steps that you outline reflect a plan that will be workable and realistic for you.
TIP # 2: Determine Three Action Steps Right Away
The difference between a great idea and an actionable plan comes down to action. If you’re anything like me, a plan will quickly fall by the wayside without clear action steps to help continue the forward momentum. After determining a direction, immediately identify three small actions that align with your goal, and commit to doing one each day for the next three days to build your momentum.
While these actions should be small and manageable, note that they should not be random. Try to act strategically by looking at the specific roadmap that you previously decided to utilize. Based on that roadmap determine the logical first step. If the first step happens to be something large and overwhelming, break it down into bitesize chunks that will be easier to manage.
Tip # 3: Find Your Hidden Minutes & Hours
Planning is essential, but there is no denying the fact that action steps take time, and you cannot create extra time out of thin air. Despite this, it is helpful to note that most people have hidden minutes and hours that are underutilized or completely
unused in their day. With this being the case, the easiest way to find your extra time, is by taking a serious look at your day and writing down where your time is going.
The key places to look for your hidden minutes and hours are at the time you spend on social media, television, and video/internet games. It is surprising how five minutes here and ten minutes there can quickly turn into forty-five minutes or an hour. Another great idea that has been a game changer for me personally, comes from Kat Lee, from the Inspired to Action podcast and blog. She tells an inspiring story about how God spoke to her at a stressful and chaotic time in her life and told her to wake up earlier as the answer for getting everything done. I will admit that this is a difficult habit to cultivate, but it has really been integral in allowing me extra time to pray and write in the mornings with a clear mind and no interruptions.
Tip # 4: Learn to Be Selfish with Your Time
Once you have discovered what hidden time you have available, whatever you do, do not give it away! It is important that you guard those minutes and hours fiercely, even if that means that you must guard against yourself. As women, it is often easy for us to become so immersed in taking care of the needs of others that we forget to take care of ourselves. So much so, that we often feel a sense of guilt when we take time for ourselves. As real as that might be, now is the time to overcome that guilt, set some boundaries, and become selfish in this one little thing.
If you want to maximize your newly found time to pursue real change, you will not only need to be selfish with that time, but you will need to be selfishly purposeful with the time. The best way to do this is to make sure that you always have a plan for exactly what task or tasks you will complete during each designated time. Make sure that your roadmap is clear enough that you are always able to easily decipher your next step, or in the case of a large step, your next bitesize chunk.
Tip # 5: Share Your Plan
There is something frightening and incredibly real about sharing our secret dreams and plans with someone else. Besides making us feel uncomfortable, there is also something vulnerable about the possibility of someone else having a front row seat to witness our possible failures or setbacks. I get this, and in all honesty, it is still something that I struggle with and am working on myself.
However, there is so much power in accountability. Don’t just share your plans, but ask others to pray for you, help you where they can, and to hold you accountable for taking the steps that you have said you need to take to be successful along your journey.
So, there you have it, by committing within your mind to make a positive change and utilizing these five tips to make a strong leap forward, you are actively positioning yourself for ultimate success. Best Wishes friend!