Times Tough? Get Going

This week’s Wright Words of Wisdom, published in the Trinidad Guardian’s Womanwise Magazine:

Every now and then, each of us must struggle through a challenge. At some point in the process, we find ourselves stuck and wondering when we will get through to the other side. Although we might have supportive people around us, we still feel alone. Although we pray, we still feel lost and burdened. However, if we are to manage and overcome our life challenges, we have to get up and get going. We have to take the actions that will keep us in a productive and progressive loop.

The following suggestions will help you to get going regardless how tough your current challenge may be.  

Manage the process. One action, just one, can jump-start your “get going” muscles. There is immense satisfaction in taking action that creates a direct result. Moreover, when you face a long-term project, simple, measurable actions can provide the rhythm you need to complete it. Pick something that you can do in a specific time-frame. Start at the beginning and systematically work your way through to the end.

Focus on the desired outcome. We are such suckers for What if…, Suppose… and If only. Instead, we should shift our focus from what or who hurt you, derailed you, or blocked you, to the dream, the success, the happiness and fulfilment you want. Don’t you want to move past the point of the things and people who may have contributed to the difficult situation? Look inward for what tugs at your heartstrings, upward for God’s guidance, and forward towards the end or accomplishment you desire. That’s where you will find the inspiration to get going.

Savour accomplishments. Everyone needs a little “pick me up” every now and then. Review your accomplishments and relish the praise people have bestowed and you. You’ll feel better and energized to get going again. When last did you take the time to acknowledge your achievements? Take a moment to make a list of the things you are most proud of accomplishing in your life. Anytime you achieve a goal or master a challenge, put it in storage for those rainy day blues. They will provide the quick and effective pick-me-up you need to move through your current challenge.

Give thanks. Despite the challenging situation and its attendant stress, you are alive. What a blessing to be grateful for! That is as simple as you can get, yet it is the ultimate blessing to be thankful for, every day. Notice what is in your life, rather than focusing on what is lacking. This can be like a breath of fresh air when your mind is consumed with finding solutions to troubling circumstances.

Pamper yourself. A visit to the hair salon or a spa or even a do-it-yourself manicure and pedicure can rev up your self-confidence and motivate you to tackle complex and difficult tasks.

Laugh. The sense of humour is one of the first things to go when the going gets tough. Things take on a serious tone because you are so focused on getting past your troubles. Take a moment to have fun and to laugh. Keeping things light will help you reconnect to the big picture and you’ll quickly find yourself in a better frame of mind to deal with the serious issues at hand.

Many of the famous people we admire today used similar tactics to deal with rejection, loss, humiliation and life-threatening events. You may never be famous, but going on in spite of tough times can be a rich legacy. Moreover, you will have the satisfaction of knowing that when the going got tough, you got going.

4 thoughts on “Times Tough? Get Going

  1. I like all these suggestions, but the one that speaks loudest to me is the first. If I'm in any kind of a writing rut, one small, really concentrated effort always works to feed the muse somehow. Maybe that one effort reminds me who I am and what I'm supposed to be doing, and suddenly all the gears are turning again, feeding off it.


  2. Cheryl, I keep wondering when you are going to compile a book of all your beautiful columns, or perhaps a self-help guide. Your words are always a balm and a comfort for the spirit! In our “keep moving ahead” world, the tip about stopping to appreciate what we've already accomplished makes SO much sense! Three cheers!


  3. Joanne,

    I guess we can never really get away from the truth that everything begins with one step.

    Yes, look what your small steps have taken you. Whole Latte Life will be out next month.

    Congratulations again.


  4. Cindy,

    I keep wondering the same thing myself. Maybe I should take my own advice – the first in this article: Manage the process. One action, just one.

    Actually, I started but stopped as I looked at the forest instead of the individual trees. Have to retrain my eyes to focus on the step-by-step process. Wish I could throw them into a machine and it will spew out the book or at least sort and group and rewrite the pieces.


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