MAKE THINGS HAPPEN WITH
WHAT YOU ALREADY HAVE
These past few months I have come across a lot of people who are devastated and completely discouraged due to the carnage that COVID has wrecked on our lives. I feel and understand their frustration, worries and pain and although I wish that I could make all the bad disappear, I cannot do that. What I can do is to help with support and guidance to make things more bearable.
Before I go any further, let me ask you a couple of questions. Do you REALLY want to make things happen; and do you REALLY want to affect change in your life? If you answered both these questions YES, with conviction in your voice and genuinely want change, then we are on the right path.
We know that nothing falls magically from the sky and because we also know that we can only control what we can control, we have to use what we already have and what is at our disposal for affect change and to make things happen to deal with life in a more positive and healthy way.
Apart from particular events that we really do not have any control over, there are things that we have a certain amount of control over. Some might say that an unbearable number of bad things happens and that they do not have any control over it, but think about it in this way. Sometimes we might just be at the wrong place but not necessarily at the wrong time. Sometimes there are aspects in a situation that we must take responsibility for and can learn from if we allow that process to happen to us. Once we start taking responsibility, then we can start making things happen and change will follow.
Say to yourself: “Today I am no longer a victim. I am a survivor.” Keep that in mind when you read through this blog and working towards your goals in where you want to be.
I want to ask you to become actively part of your own life and stop standing on the sidelines watching life happening to you. You have the ability to make things happen for yourself. All you have to do is adjust your mental processes, attitude and show up for yourself in your own life.
One thing that I just quickly want to make clear is that each one of us are unique. We interpret life events differently, our backgrounds are different, our talents are different, our education varies, and our dreams and aspirations are different. Some of us might look similar or come from the same household or community, our religious beliefs might also be the same, but it is our own true values, visions, interpretations and souls that are truly different.
With that said, you might ask how this blog can help you if we are all different. Yes, it is true. I do not know you. I do not know your background and I do not know how you think or where you are or where you see yourself in the future, but hopefully some of the guidelines that I give you will help you with your journey in making things happen with what you already have. Eleanor Roosevelt once said “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams”.
- You Know You: Do a bit of inner self-searching. Be honest and realistic with yourself. Nobody knows your inner self better than you. You know the life lessons that you learnt. You know what your dreams are. You know your strong characteristics as well as your weaknesses. You know what you like and do not like. You know what you want and do not want out of life. Write these things down in a journal and keep it handy for future reference.
- Find Quiet Time: Find a quiet time to reflect on your thoughts and feelings. With all the hustle and craziness, it is important to find time to listen and reflect on our own inner direction. Practise your breathing and meditation techniques and keep journaling.
- Ambition, Effort and Persistence: All these form part of really getting what you want out of life. We must work for what we want. A bit of sweat and hard work is part of the process. First you want to know what you want, and you must want it pretty badly. Next you must put in the “elbow-grease” and work hard towards your goal and lastly, you must push through and not give up even if there are challenges and obstacles in the way. Keep your mind and body strong. It might be easier to just give up and curl up into a ball, but it takes strength to get up and persistently working towards the goals that you have set for yourself.
- Position Yourself: Are you positioning yourself for success? Imagine hiding in a corner where nobody can see you. You are not getting the support, knowledge, mentoring and coaching that you need. Will you succeed? Quite doubtful. Where you place yourself and how you carry yourself makes a big difference. Try positioning yourself more prominently. No, I am not saying that you should force yourself into situations or into people’s lives. I am saying that you should become curious and be present. Act as if you already succeeded and what kind of person you would be. Ask questions and learn as much as you can. Reach out to a mentor or coach. Set new aspirations and widen your horizon.
- Positive Thinking and Self-Talk: Try this mental switch. Instead of saying “I am going to try and probably fail”, rather say “I am going to try my best. Possibly encounter a few hurdles, but I am going to succeed”. If you do fail at first, get back up, learn from the experience, and try again. Believe in yourself and your capabilities. Most times we sell ourselves short. It is easier to break ourselves down instead of building ourselves up. Start seeing the fire within yourself. You are capable of so much and all you must do is show up and fight the battle for yourself.
Start talking to yourself like a winner. Start saying to yourself some of the following:
I can do this
I am smart enough and strong enough to figure this out
I know that there is a solution and I will find it
It matters that I try. It does not matter that I fail
I am capable of solving any problem that comes my way
I can handle anything that life puts on my path
- Think Big: I know what the goals are that I want to achieve with my practice. They are really big, but each day is a step to realising that goal. Do not do anything half-heartedly. To speak mechanics here, give it gas. Whatever you do, give it all you got. Do not settle for mediocre or the middle. Only reach for the best.
- Failures does not Define us: When we fail at something, it tends to break our confidence and motivation. Keep your goals in mind. Learn from the failures and see where things went wrong. Adjust your plan, broaden your perspective by asking questions, do a bit of research and persist in what you are working towards. Do not let the struggles and little failures rob you from the pleasure when you achieved your goal. Everything comes at a price and it is up to you whether you ultimately emotionally pay the price by beating yourself up for your failures or are you going to acknowledge and give yourself credit for what you learnt and accomplished?
- Keep Setting Goals: I have mentioned goals a few times already, but this one is important. Instead of focussing on what you do not want in life and what you want to get rid of, focus on what you want in life. By adjusting your focus, will already allow you to grow in that direction. Never settle just because you reached a goal and finding yourself feeling fairly content. Set new goals. You limit yourself if you stop setting new and higher goals for yourself. You must also be willing to work towards those goals and climb the mountain to reach them. You can reach them if you take it one step at a time by breaking big goals into smaller parts and working on them diligently and with passion.
- Let it Go: I have spoken earlier about control and that we do not have control over everything, but there are also things that we do not have to control. Take this blog for an example. I have semi-control over this blog, what I write, when I post it and how I decide to advertise it is under my control, but I do not have control over how many people read it or how they interpret my words. At some point I have to let go or take the risk of burning myself out and possibly burning a few bridges if I force people to do something that they cannot or do not want to do. It is not something that I want to control nor have to have to control over.
- Be Aware: There are really a bunch of wonderful people and events that are present in my world. I am going to ask you to become aware of the guidance that you are receiving. It might be from a mentor, coach or a counsellor, but it could also be from a friend, colleague, spouse or even that very wise toddler who shares his or her uncensored and precious wisdom with you. See if you can become a part of a group or an event where you can learn more. Who knows, the normally negative newspaper could open doors for you.
- Be Grateful: My previous blog dealt with Gratefulness and how it can help you. There is rarely anything more delightful than receiving a heartfelt “thank you” from somebody. Now it is your turn to say Thank You. All the events that lead up to this moment, all the people that came, went, or stayed in your life had an impact on you, one way or the other. Remember to say thank you to yourself as well. Recognise yourself with gratitude and acknowledge what you have in your life because of you, your hard work and what you created.
- Surround yourself with Positive and Inspiring People: We know who the positive and inspiring people are in our lives. For me it is my daughter and husband. They are the magic potion that drives me higher and stronger. Search for people who have already achieved a certain amount of success in their own lives, who can inspire you and offer support and advice as you deal with your own journey to making things happen for yourself. Remember, their success does not necessarily have to be business orientated, but can be personal, family or creatively orientated. Ask them to share their own experiences, knowledge and advice that you can tap into and use in your own journey.
- Do not take things Personally: Unfortunately, bad things happen to good people because life is a bit crazy and unpredictable. It is how we perceive and react to these events that makes a difference. Is it necessary to take every event personally or as a personal attack on you? What if you pet a dog and all of a sudden, this little fur-ball bites your hand? It might not be anything that you said or did wrong, but you accidently touched its ear that could be sore and sensitive. It was not your fault. On the positive side and with your hand all patched-up you learnt that there is a problem with your dog’s ear and can take him to the vet. Sometimes other factors and other peoples plans/goals collide with our own and for that you cannot take responsibility. Once again, focus on your mental thought process and how your thoughts influence your emotions and behaviour. Does it serve you in a positive way?
- See Opportunities and Step Out: Step out of your comfort zone and start noticing the various opportunities that are available to you. If you come across an opportunity to learn, study or gain knowledge from somebody else, please grab onto it with enthusiasm. If you notice a shortfall within your community and know that you have the expertise to fulfil that gap, go for it. If you are unsure of where to start, do a bit of research and talk to as many people as possible who can help you with establishing the steps to achieving your goal. You can even collaborate with your new acquaintances to reach your goals. Only you stand in your way of achieving your goals.
- Be Flexible: The whole process of making things happen with what you already have is liquid. It is not rigid and there are no set ways of doing this. The steps that you take does not really matter, it is your belief in your actions, visions, clarity, motivation, persistence and even those things that you cannot control that does matter.
- Reach Out: Often when we face difficult times, we lose focus and only see the walls that surrounds us. Reach out to Mentors, Coaches or a Therapist if you feel that the struggles that you are facing are getting you down or getting too much to bear. You are not alone with your mental health struggles. We are trained and are more than willing to help you. It is always highly recommended that you speak to somebody that you trust. We can help with introducing you to new perspectives, goal setting, problem solving, communication skills and many other techniques that will help you on your journey.
Today you can make the changes that can lighten your life and your future. Listen to your instincts because you know who you are and what you want. Do not jeopardise your own wellbeing, those of others or your peace of mind. Stop degrading yourself and start focusing on your potential. Lastly, stay motivated and do not let the hurdles in life stop you from reaching your beautiful goals.
You already have everything within yourself to make a change and to make things happen. You just have to tap into your own strengths, skills, talents, passions and determination to do it.
As always, I like to end my blog with a quote or two and the following might give you a bit more insight. The first one is from Bradley Whitford who said, “Infuse your life with action. Don’t wait for it to happen. Make it happen. Make your own future. Make your own hope. Make your own love. And whatever your beliefs, honour your creator, not by passively waiting for grace to come down from upon high, but by doing what you can to make grace happen … yourself, right now, right down here on Earth.”, and this one from Howard Schultz who said, “Risk more than others think is safe. Dream more than others think is practical.”. As a little bonus, here is a last quote from Israelmore Ayivor who said, “Never be complacent about the current steps; don’t agree and follow the status quo. Be determined that you are making an indelible impact with great change. Now, dress up and go to make it happen!”.
As a reminder, GEM Mental Health Therapy and Coaching has decided to offer Skype Video Calls, Zoom Video Meetings, WhatsApp Calls and WhatsApp Video Chats in order to reach as many people as possible. I have also decided to incorporate Counselling via Email, which seems a bit unorthodox, but some clients do not have the freedom and privacy to discuss heart matters in the enclosed environment that they find themselves in at this time. Please do not hesitate to reach out so that we can work together on your mental health.
Thank you very much for reading my blog. I truly hope that it helped somebody, somewhere. Please send any feedback or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org and remember to have a look out for a new blog every second week.