Progress. Now that’s an interesting topic!
It is a word that is often surrounded by a cloud – well in our own minds especially. We can see others progress as clear as day, shining brightly and often making us feel slightly inferior (in all honesty!). But our own? We have to peer through a dark cloud of our own judgement, was it enough? The comparison trap, ‘yes I progressed BUT BUT BUT’… always followed by more BUTS!
So if we struggle so much to see our own progress, how can we define it? How can we look ourselves in the mirror and see our own successes, truly believing that we are doing well?
For this weeks ‘5 Top Tips on a Tuesday’ I give you five action steps to look at in order to define your own progress. Whether that be in your personal life, your career, sport, hobbies or interests – trying viewing your progress differently and reveal its wonder from that dark cloud!
How can you work out if you have progressed if you don’t know your ‘why’? Why did you start in the first place? What motivated you? If I use my example of CrossFit – why did I start? To become stronger physically and mentally. Did this happen? 100% yes. Sometimes going back to the basics of why we started is enough for us to see our progression. It can be as simple as this.
Emotions surround our progress and our view of it. The best way to release that emotion is to look at your progress from another’s eyes. If your friend achieved what you have done, would that have been enough? Do you think they have progressed? You may be disappointed that you were overlooked for promotion at work, but have you progressed? Surely even to be considered for a promotion means you are close to it?
Sometimes the art to progression is simply to release the clamp it holds around you. I want to be a better CrossFitter, I want to PR. But when I put that pressure on myself to see progress I am often hindered by it. I stall, go backwards or lose that sense of enjoyment. You will see progress when you least expect it – if you don’t expect it all the time.
Back to the ‘yes BUT BUT BUT’. I am so bad for saying ‘yes I managed to progress but I didn’t do as well as I had hoped/ as X did/ as I should be doing’. I even said this sentence to David this morning. And what did he have me do? Release the negativity from the situation. Take away the ‘BUT’. Once I did that it dawned on me that I did achieve something today – I progressed, period. And isn’t that something to be pleased about!?
Focus on the future
Sometimes we forget we have progressed simply because its a part of a bigger picture. But we need to celebrate these small steps and achievements on our way to our overall goal. I meditated today – I have wanted to do so all week but time slipped away. But I progressed because I did it – I cannot meditate everyday without starting with day one.
Don’t let your definition of progress be clouded by your own personal judgement. We are our own worst critic, but I rather think it’s time for us to be our own cheerleader and supporter from now on.
How do you define progress?
Tell me something you have been working on?
Are you your own worst critic?