Have you ever been tempted to pack up shop and quit? You know how it goes. Your client calls to cancel at the last minute. Again. Oh, there’s a good reason. That’s not the issue. It’s just that there are issues that come up frequently when people are working their way through difficulties. Parents, peers and professionals- all of these roles require support from a mind- from a perspective, that exceeds what one person can offer. Sometimes there are breakdowns along the way. These episodes can have clients skipping everything from coaching to a needed legal consultation to a chemotherapy appointment. When breakdowns become frequent in number, they become the default. You’re still carrying some clients on your census that have missed more of their sessions than they’ve attended? At some point, the process just stops working because the client is anxious, avoidant, depressed or wholly disengaged.
Maybe the trouble isn’t a person? For some of you, the trouble is a circumstance. You’re waiting for one or more pieces to a solution. There’s a challenge in the area of business, education, health or finances. You’ve got enough clients to pay the rent, but not enough to pay yourself a living wage. Your Spanish, French or other language is good enough to talk and even to translate a document, but it’s not good enough to let you deliver your professional service in your second language. You’re eating healthier, but the A1C just isn’t coming down. And neither is the weight. Your business and personal budgets are maxed out. You’re giving and you’re able to put some in savings. But investing? A six month cushion for emergencies? It’s not there yet.
In every one of these situations, there’s a human tendency to look for the easy button. C’mon, you’ve seen the commercial with the big, red button. Figuring out how to do things in one step or a few steps is a fallacy. So is figuring out how to do things using one approach. We always want the end result. The short cut, right? This innate desire shows up in our storytelling. A genie and three wishes… A fairy godmother, some glass slippers and a handsome prince… In the real world, maybe it’s a coaching package and six steps… A treatment plan with a qualified clinician… Or six sessions with a CPA to get your commercial taxes unknotted… I’ll tell you a secret: know why all of these systems, services and short cuts often work? It’s because the people who use them work their asses off. That’s it. That’s the secret to success in business, coaching and life. Coaches would say that such a person “is playing full out”. In other words, they’re not holding anything back. They’re as engaged, disciplined, committed and active as it is possible to be.
It’s worthwhile to look for the right tool, system, principle or approach. It’s worthwhile to pay a coach or a consultant or other professional to support you through the process. But the key ingredient is work. And most of the places where my clients and I get stuck, if we’re just brutally honest, is getting stopped at some point when engaging the work. Why? Work is uncomfortable. It’s costly. And it’s unpredictable. You can’t KNOW that after five sessions, you’re going to be all set. Or that after two more months of working on your healthy food plan, financial wellness plan or spiritual maturity plan that you’ll have gotten to your intended destination. At some point, you have to sign on the dotted line of your own commitment and promise to pursue the journey whether it’s six steps, sixty steps or six million steps.
So- don’t pack it in! As one sojourner to another on this mortal plane, trust in the combination of diligence, discernment, engagement and vision you’re consistently engaging to move you forward. You’re going to get there. And when you do, you’ll look back at today and be glad that you stuck with your promises to yourself. Go ahead and pour on that labor. Your sweat equity will accrue over time. Your choice to be diligent to the point of being uncomfortable matters. It’s significant. It means that you’re more invested in the change you want to see than you are in maintaining the present. Honestly, you’re going to be uncomfortable to some extent in any case. It’s a choice between the discomfort of limiting present circumstances or the discomfort of investing in the vision. Staying in the present scene can bring depression, disengagement, disappointment and dysfunction. Or- choose the discomfort of facing the future and its costs- generally a combination of courage, integrity, perseverance and skill, Because that’s how you get to real results.
If you’d like to consult with a compassionate coach who can help you keep that vision in view and enhance the results of your labor and engagement, reach out! We’ll be happy to support you as you journey forward.