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Do you ever have one of those down days where you’ve fallen and can’t get up?
You’ve spent all your energy and have none left. You’ve exhausted every avenue you had. You’ve run into obstacles that you can’t climb over.
If this sounds familiar, no wonder you feel uncertain about things.
You’ve put in all the effort, only to yield little results. You started at the same time as everyone else, only for others to leapfrog over you. You realize that your time is limited, and yet you’ve squandered it away.
No wonder you feel doubtful about yourself.
But sometimes, it helps to get a perspective. A bigger picture. When things aren’t going your way, a different frame of mind can help you get through those dark times.
Here are 8 reasons to keep moving forward during those times of doubt:
1. You’ve made it this far.
You’ve made it this far, so what’s to keep you from getting through the next obstacle? Think back to the most difficult challenge you endured to date. At the time, you felt like you were at a crossroads, undecided on how to proceed.
Yet you found a way through. You overcame the obstacle, sidestepped it, or tried something else. No matter what you did, you survived the hardship and you’re still here. So no matter what is happening with you today, you will get through it.
2. Others have been in your exact same situation.
We like to think we’re unique snowflakes. Everything revolves around us. If we encounter some hardship, it only applies to us. But no matter what you feel, know that others before you have felt the exact same way. They’ve been down that road.
Yes, even if they are what you would consider successful. Especially if they’re successful. Why? Because people who excel tend to be the ones who put themselves out there, who try things, and fall flat on their faces. Those who don’t try new things don’t fall. They don’t go through the doubt that someone who takes a risk faces.
3. Feeling doubt means you’re figuring things out.
When you’re unsure about things, it means you’re at a stage where the path ahead is unclear. You’re facing reality with the hard facts you’ve been given. This may seem like a bad thing, but it’s not. In fact, doubt can be a good thing.
Doubt is a sign that you’re processing the facts, working issues out in your head, and approaching a problem from different angles. Think of it like holding a giant ball of knots and having to undo the knots, one at a time. You’ll undo the knots eventually, but you need some time to work it out. Have patience.
4. You’re gravitating towards a better fit.
Think back to a situation where you felt out of place. Like the odd one out at a social gathering, you sense that you’re in the wrong career, surrounded by the wrong people, or going down the wrong path. It’s not that these places or things are inherently bad. They just don’t fit you.
Maybe you find yourself in a place that doesn’t fit your personality, values, or aspirations. If you’ve been feeling this way for a while, don’t brush it off. Your sixth sense can be telling you that something isn’t right for you. Acknowledging this is the first step towards getting to a place that’s better for you. When you get there, it becomes clear that where you were previously wasn’t where you were meant to stay.
5. Keep moving, you’ll encounter a better day.
All of us go through times where it’s as if we’re walking through a lightless tunnel, surrounded by darkness and no end in sight. It could be the result of an unexpected tragedy, repeated failures, or simply the banality of an everyday routine. Any small negative event is enough to swallow up and engulf any positives in our lives.
Things might not seem great right now. But if you keep pushing, keep trying, and keep discovering new things, you will reach better days ahead. Pain is temporary. No matter what you’re going through, the feeling wears away with time. Uplifting events happen eventually, making the long, dark days of struggle to get there all the more worthwhile.
6. The downs make you appreciate the ups.
Imagine if you got every single thing you wanted. Sounds nice, right? But really think about it. No setbacks. No resistance. No obstacles. It may sound good at first, but you would get bored sooner or later.
It’s like playing a game against the same competitors, and winning by a landslide every time. Would you want to keep competing against them? Probably not. You would look for more challenging players to compete against.
On the flip side, imagine going through numerous challenges. When you finally achieve a victory, you appreciate it all the more because you knew all the effort and difficulty you had to endure to get there.
7. Change is inevitable, so get ready for it.
Change is uncomfortable. We picture an unexpected shift in our lives, whether that means an unforeseen event, a loss of a loved one, or a forced difference to our everyday routine. These changes mean we have to adjust and adapt to a new environment.
And yet, change is part of everyone’s lives. Change can be for the better. Something unexpected comes along, prompting you to find a solution to a problem. You experience an event that forces you to grow and reconsider where you were before. Eventually, that change can lift you to a better place than before.
8. It’s up to you to get up and keep moving.
Bad things happen to everyone. It’s often not our fault. But ultimately, it’s up to you to gather your strength and keep going. The good news is that unfortunate events can actually lead to something better.
When you find yourself in what looks like a dead end, you’re forced to stop and ask yourself, “What now?” The road before you is closed, so it’s time to look at other paths. Good opportunities can easily pass us by when we’re unaware or lack the initiative to grab hold of them.
You’ve Made It Through Everything So Far
Think back to the hardest thing you ever did in your life so far.
When you go back to that time, you’ll realize that it wasn’t so bad after all. You survived. You are much stronger than you think.
You’ll get through everything, no matter how tough it is. That doesn’t mean you’ll pass through an event the same way other people do. Others are probably taking a different approach. It doesn’t matter.
What is right for one person isn’t necessarily right for another person. You may be doubtful that you’re capable enough to do something, or doubtful that you’re even headed the right direction. It takes time, thought, and trial to figure it out.
Whatever you do, you’ll eventually find yourself in the place that is right for you. Without realizing it, you’ll naturally gravitate towards the things that suit you the most. It might not be obvious in the beginning, but as you look back, the view will gradually become clearer.
Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges by Amy Cuddy – Have you ever gone to something high-stakes, flunked it, and walked out regretting your performance? This book shows how to transform your mindset, behavior, and body language to perform your best.