When it comes to making a major life decision, it’s okay to be on the fence. It’s not okay to live there. And, yet, far too many of us live on the fence, wavering between one major life decision and another, contemplating one life path while debating another. There’s nothing about that wiffle-waffle state that leads to success.
The ability to make an UNEQUIVOCAL DECISION and move in that direction is a key attribute of all super-successful people.
It’s the ability to dream and do and continue the process UNTIL success happens.
Unfortunately, fear can get in the way of that. It can make you doubt your ability to move forward, question your right to have what you want, and leave you in a frenzy of analysis paralysis… and then days, weeks, months and years go by and guess what? You’re still on that same fence.
How do you get off the fence and fully into your life?
One word: commitment.
Overcoming the fear of going in a particular life direction is not about decision making. Most people make the decision fairly easily. It’s the staying-committed-to-the-decision-for-as-long-as-it-takes that gives people trouble.
How do you overcome the fear of making AND keeping a commitment to yourself?
4 steps to begin with (notice I said begin- there’s no fast and loose way to be persistent; a lot of persistence is HARD WORK- no shortcuts):
- Evaluate whether the decision you’re making is a means or an end. Far too often, people decide to go in directions that give them a short term escape but not a long term outcome. Before you go to the place of saying, “I’m going to be here UNTIL”, evaluate your decision and be sure that the path you’re considering is a path you’d still want to be on 3, 5, and 10 years from now. Be sure that you’re not running away from one problem only to land in a new, bigger one. If the decision is about short-term satisfaction, stop wasting your life on it. Everything needs to lead you to long term outcomes. You don’t get this moment back again. Why waste it on something temporary?
- Accept that the outcome is not going to be perfect. In other words, you commit to going the distance because the journey is worth it, not because you expect to end up exactly where you want to be by exactly the date you set. It may take longer. The outcome may not be perfect. Things may turn out totally different than you expect. There are no guarantees. Accept this and you’ll be free to give the journey everything you’ve got.
- Stop looking for immediate gratification. The victory moment is just that: a moment. In any commitment, there are two moments of bliss: 1) when you first make the decision to go after it and 2) when you finally get what you went after. However, there’s usually a long period of hard work, persistence, and sacrifice in the middle that’s not cute, fun, or exciting. You need to know that, accept it, and still be able to go on the journey, even if it’s not fireworks every single day.
- When obstacles hit or better options resurface, be absolutely serious about NOT changing your mind. Since most of the journey to a goal is the “middle-of-the-road” part of the journey, there are going to be moments (MANY of them) where you’re going to want to turn back or quit. Don’t.
Want to learn more about overcoming the fear of commitment in ANY area of your life?
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