START WHERE YOU ARE
It’s time to be honest with yourself… Where are you emotionally, physically and even geographically right now?
You don’t need to analyse or judge it, just accept whatever is really going on for you – all of it, the good stuff and the more challenging aspects of life. This might include acknowledging that you feel disheartened, confused or sad or that your body is unwell, unfit, injured or in pain. Perhaps you’re in a job you dislike, a house that’s not a home or with a person or people who don’t make you feel good.
Be real and accept all of you, just as you are now. It’s one of the most self-supporting things you can do. Let’s face it, if that big goal feels insurmountable, beating yourself up about it and putting yourself down won’t make things any easier or you more able to achieve it.
And remember - accepting where you are doesn’t mean acquiescing to it. It’s not about giving in, giving up or relinquishing personal responsibility. It’s just noticing what’s already happening.
USE WHAT YOU HAVE
What intellectual, emotional or physical resources do you have to give you more to play with?
It’s easy to let the negative stuff cloud the fact that, actually, you do have the skills, knowledge or energy to do something positive, however small.
- What do you know? Probably more than you think and a lot of it will be useful because it’s brought you this far. Build gently on that.
- Who do you know? Chances are there’s someone who will listen to you, support you or have some great advice.
- Where can you go? Unless your body says no, you can be wherever your legs will carry you. A change of scene can change your state of mind. That might mean going into another room or for a long walk.
- What do you have access to? Ideas, information, inspiration. By opening up your mental horizons you create more possibilities and avenues not yet considered.
DO WHAT YOU CAN
What is possible right now?
Just for the minute, progress might be slow. It might be a case of taking stock or even going to bed rather than ploughing on or perhaps the only action possible is incredibly small or limited.
In a culture that focuses on being the best or the most, aiming high and thinking big, realising that all you can do is ________ can feel like failure. It’s not. It’s a step forwards and with each step, the view changes.
This may be a time to scale things down. It may be that all you feel you can manage for the moment is a few big deep breaths. As it happens, that’s one of the best things you can do. If you’ve never meditated, focusing on your breathing is the easiest way to do it. It will calm you, get oxygen into the body and help you think more clearly and creatively.
How do you eat an elephant? A little bit at a time. You may not be able to achieve your ultimate dream or desire today, but you can still nibble away at it - and don’t let that negative self-talk get the better of you. It’s not enough… You’re not enough… Both untrue.
“Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can” is the reminder that can make all the difference, if we can just be kind enough to forgive ourselves for being human.