The Process IS the Progress

Not too long ago, I was giving a workshop for FENG (Financial Executives Networking Group) about how to achieve success through self-awareness. I was getting a great response, with a lot of interaction from the attendees, when one member asked, “Red, if I know what my obstacles are, is there a quick way to remove them?”

Have you ever wondered this same thing? For instance, maybe you realized that your poor self-image is making it harder for you to gain the confidence necessary to pursue that promotion you want. Or perhaps you’re aware that your poor time management is hurting you when it comes to meeting clients on time; thus negatively affecting your business and making you wish for a fast way to overcome this issue.

While it’s only human to wish for some type of quick-fix, let me tell you what I told him. There is no quick answer when it comes to overcoming your obstacles. It takes a lot of work—hard, challenging, introspective work—to effectively remove obstacles from your life. (But it’s oh so worth it when you do!)

Like anything else, you have to go through a process when it comes to changing negative habits or patterns, especially ones you’ve had for years, if not decades. And even if you can identify which behaviors are hurting you instead of helping you, which is the first step to overcoming them by the way, that doesn’t mean that they’ll just disappear once you’ve realized what they are. You have to constantly work through them in order to eventually make it to the other, happier and more fulfilling side.

Reminding yourself of this one little fact can help you get through the tough times, and there will be tough times. There will be times when all you want to do is beat yourself up because you know what the problem is, yet you continue to do the same thing over and over again, preventing you from reaching your goal. Yet this is when it’s important to remember that changing these behaviors is a process, but as long as you follow the process and put in the work, you will definitely make progress.

Yes, you will slip up from time to time and experience moments when you wonder if you’ve got what it takes to banish your negative behaviors for good. Well, I’m here to tell you that you do. We all have what it takes inside of us, and the key to bringing it out is to never, ever give up. And to never fall for the idea of a quick and easy fix.

As long you look for a quick way to resolve your obstacles, you’ll find nothing but frustration. You’ll be constantly faced with the reality that they don’t work. Sure, some work for a limited amount of time, but eventually, without fail, anything that promotes fast and easy change winds up easily going by the wayside, often leaving you in worse condition than when you started.

So do yourself a favor and get over the notion of there being a quick fix for whatever hurdle is standing in your way. Instead, remember that getting from point A to point B successfully involves following a process—a usually lengthy process. But once you arrive, you’ll be glad you put in the time because then the positive results will stay.

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