Obstacles to clarifying and implementing our Vision and Purpose
99.9% of obstacles to being able to develop and implement our Vision and Purpose, are in our head.
We are our own worst enemies. And conveniently, we generally choose to blame a lot of other things and people and events.
Our most common self-imposed obstacles:
- Over-thinking – many of us think waaaaaay to much, and in the process we can get ourselves so tied up in knots that we induce all kinds of anxieties, we don’t sleep, we run out of energy, and we lose rational focus.
- Negative thinking – “There’s no way my dreams will ever come true.” “I’m not good enough.” “I’m not smart enough.” “I’m not deserving.” And so on. Sound familiar?
- Excuses – “I don’t have time.” “I’ll have to move.”
- Money issues – a special kind of negative thinking excuse that deserves a category all of its own – “I can’t afford it.”
- Competing principles – “If I do this, that will happen.” “If I do this, I will lose that.” Generally another type of negative thinking excuse.
- Worrying – another name for all of the above.
For many of us, we’ve had these negative voices for decades. And so they’re not easy to shift. And in attempting to do so, many of us – or maybe most of us – will judge ourselves harshly too, in failing to stop the negativity thinking. And so it goes…
In large part, our route to ridding ourselves of negative thinking is to become increasingly aware of the negative messages we give ourselves, and slowly and deliberately stop doing it. This takes time, maybe years.
To the extent though that our vision and purpose are clarified, we can increasingly replace the negativity also with commitment and energy for a new passion and direction.
After decades of practice, much of our negative self-talk has literally become an addiction, and we can even panic if we don’t over-think a situation, worrying we may have left something out of an equation; or the freedom from so much thinking feels too loose, too relaxed; or even that wallowing in self-pity is actually a comfort, that regardless of how much we tell ourselves to ‘get it together’, it’s just too easy to stay wallowing.[In none of this do I want to impose on clinical diagnoses of depression and other mental illness, which can be severe, and for which the counsel of medical professionals, and very often medication, are a requisite path. Clinical depression arises for a number of reasons and can be differentiated ‘ordinary’ negative thinking. At its less chronic and less severe, there is no doubt a grey area where medical patients would benefit from awareness of negative thinking, and where those with negative self-talk may benefit from short-term medication to help lift them up and forward. The diagnoses and treatment of mental health issues, whether mild or severe, is an enormous topic; and it is an arena employing many health professionals, both traditional and alternative.]
Notwithstanding the values of analysing situations, and being prepared, rational and even cautious, there is no part of negative thinking that has any use to us, and indeed it is generally more negative than we imagine, denying as it does, happiness, joy, openness, and the furthering of our dreams and goals.
Over-thinking – equally deleterious – so without let-up as it is, acts as a barrier to inspiration and creativity, not allowing positivity the least crack in the wall (the least space in our thoughts) to find any foothold in our minds.
There is NOTHING to gain from negative thinking, and almost EVERYTHING to lose.
There will always be events that have the power to stop us in our tracks on the way to working out our Vision or in implementing it. Events can slow us down, and some obstacles may turn out to be blessings in disguise, but nothing has the power to keep us from having a Vision and working towards it, except us, and our own thinking.