Have you ever shied away from a big endeavor because it seemed too big of a challenge to take on? Maybe you received a great idea for a new business, or you felt inspired to make a big life change, but shortly afterwards, you dismissed the idea because it just seemed impossible, or at least very difficult to attain.
While it’s true that bigger goals require extra effort which can leave you feeling drained periodically, it’s also worth noting that holding yourself back and settling for less than you deserve will diminish your enthusiasm and joy for life. Chronic dissatisfaction becomes a gnawing ache inside of you and it becomes increasingly difficult to carry on with your daily routine.
You may be familiar with the saying, “Everything worthwhile is all uphill.” It’s certainly true that new endeavors require a lot of energy and effort at the beginning, but once you build a little momentum, keeping the progress going starts to feel easier.
One good way to reduce the strain on your time, energy, and motivation is to approach the goal with smaller bursts of effort, followed by periods of rest. Imagine that you wanted to walk up a steep, long hill but you were not in the best physical shape. Standing at the bottom of this hill and looking up at the top would probably make you feel overwhelmed and doubtful about your ability to make the climb.
However, instead of climbing the hill all at once, you could walk for a short distance and then pause for a few minutes to catch your breath, then walk another short distance, and so on. Taking the journey in smaller chunks will make it seem much less arduous.
You can approach any big goal or endeavor in the same way. First, consider some initial action steps that you can take to begin moving in the right direction. You can even make a list of a series of steps that you believe would be the most effective route to the goal. Then commit to taking just one action step from that list. Then take the next step. Continue on, taking one thoughtful step at a time.
At any time if you start to feel overwhelmed or depleted, give yourself permission to take a break so that you can rest and recharge your energy, whether it’s for a day, a week, or longer. Avoid the temptation to push through the resistance and keep going simply because you want to reach the finish line faster. The harder you push yourself, the more tired and frustrated you will become, which will only slow your progress and make it much more likely that you will give up. Taking a brief pause allows you to not only rest, but also regain your clarity and motivation.
Once you feel rested from your brief break, you will be eager to start moving forward again and you can follow this same approach of short bursts of effort followed by rest all the way to your goal. Before long you will be able to look back at how far up that hill you have climbed, with little stress or strain.