Deciding to take action towards a goal or hidden ambition can be intimidating for just about anyone. When there is no telling what will come of your efforts, we are often hesitant to try something new.
Regardless if you are on the cusp of quitting your current job, entering a new relationship, or are just unclear as to where your life is headed; decisions and actions are a part of everyday life. With every passing minute we are making decisions for our lives. While some decisions are fairly straightforward and simple, others require a lot more thought and preparation. How naturally does decision-making come to you?
Are you an over thinker?
Do you generally take significant risks without looking back?
Do you like to test the waters before deciding to dive in head first?
No matter your style, making decisions that can alter the course of your life is no simple feat.
One thing that my parents always used to tell me, which remains true to this day, is that we’ve got to start somewhere. When it comes to decision-making no matter how large or small, the decision to just start is just as important as the result you’re looking to achieve. “Life is a journey, not a destination.” Ralph Waldo Emerson When we can give ourselves permission to just start playing with an idea or ambition we tap into our courage, confidence and choice. We push aside any negative thoughts we might have and we create a space for our curiosity and creativity to emerge.
Possibilities and natural openings can only be seen when we clear away the clutter of our negative thought patterns. Think positive thoughts and the right path will start to present itself.
Here are a few tips on how you can just start:
Create a “To don’t List”
Taking the first steps into the unknown is scary, but what’s even scarier is settling for the dissatisfying, safe and redundant. When you find yourself at a crossroads and you’re looking for a change it’s important that you first acknowledge those things you know you don’t want to take with you on the rest of this journey. Pack only those things you know will serve you. Starting something new often requires that you unload some of the old things that have burdened you for too long. When drafting this list be sure to include any limiting beliefs you know you currently hold that will only succeed in keeping you small. When we unload what’s been weighing us down we stand a bit taller, and see a bit clearer. Pack lightly. Negativity will weigh down but positivity has the power to propel you forward.
“Accept the fact that you are the pivot along which the loads of your efforts will turn. Acknowledge yourself as the chairperson at the center of affairs management for your dreams. Take the chair and be at the fore-front.” Israelmore Ayivor
Take an inventory of the things you value
Every so often I ask my clients to take an inventory of their values. This is a great way to get a visual of those things that matter to you the most. Values impact the way you live and work. They guide your actions and impact the decisions you make on a consistent basis. When you take inventory of your values you give yourself permission to review what course your life is currently taking. You examine if your actions are in alignment with your values and you give yourself an opportunity to make changes where necessary. When was the last time you reflected on the things you value most? Next time you start to feel like your life has gotten off course make a list of the things you value and take a look at how your values are matching, or, not matching up with the everyday actions you are taking. This is a great way to reprogram your life and refocus your energy on being true to yourself.
“Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.”
Celebrate Small Victories
There is no victory too small that doesn’t merit some degree of acknowledgment. All too often we get in the habit of just focusing our energy on the END PRODUCT. Never stopping to acknowledge the minor victories that have gotten us to where we are today, we lose sight of the all important steps that lead us to our biggest achievements. By practicing being fully present we can slow ourselves down to take notice of these moments. These are the moments that help to keep us going. Small victories serve as a ray of hope when we find ourselves feeling overwhelmed or disempowered. Next time you find yourself working towards a long-term goal devise a list of the short-term goals you might organically achieve along the way. These goals help to recharge your batteries and help to keep your momentum and ambition alive. When you decide to take those first steps towards a new goal or ambition you already have cause to celebrate. You are listening to your future self and acknowledging that the journey you are about to embark on is necessary for your personal development. Your goals are deeply connected to your values and so keep them always at the forefront of your mind. Revisit those things you value the most, take the first step towards a goal and see things through till their completion. Celebrate these moments. It takes courage to take action and these actions no matter how big or small merit your acknowledgement and celebration.
“Nothing grows in the shadow of want without the sunlight of acknowledging your fullness.” Bryant McGill
Ambition in the City