Ever feel like the way forward is proving hard to achieve?
It’s our default as human beings to seek the easiest or quickest route to achieving our goals.
Sometimes though, the path we choose doesn’t produce the results we’d hoped for. Occasionally it can seem like we’ve hit a dead end. And thinking we’ve run out of options can cause us to feel trapped and helpless.
Our beliefs about what is possible affect our actions. So, if we think it’s impossible, it will be.
But if we believe in what’s POSSIBLE, then there’s always another way*.
There’s always another path we can follow to solve a work problem, fix a broken relationship, or move forwards in our lives.
It might not look, feel or seem like the track you thought you’d take. The road might be squelchy underfoot. The trail might be bumpy or steep in places. The route might be unfamiliar.
But does short-term discomfort or uncertainty really matter if it helps you get to where you need to go, when the path you’re currently on isn’t?
Taking a different route also creates opportunities you might not have encountered taking the well-worn path. Possibilities like creating relationships with new people. Or strengthening your character by facing uncertainty head on.
Finding new ways to solve our problems paves the way for us to help others do the same. But only if we believe, as Marie Forleo puts it, that “everything is figureoutable”.
“If we start to think about our creative challenges, and our life challenges, and our collective challenges, in this way that everything is figureoutable, it all starts to change.
We go from feeling defeated and overwhelmed and broken, to feeling courageous and capable and full of hope.”
So, don’t just look. See.
Change your perspective. Open your mind. Think differently. There’s always another way, if we’re willing to change the way we look at things.
“Sometimes even the smallest shift in thinking or doing can create the biggest opportunity.”
But how you do apply that in real life?
Here’s a few simple suggestions to start…
- If you’re stuck in a pothole on a challenging work problem, try reversing things. Work from the end goal backwards to see if this will highlight a different path forwards.
- If you’re struggling to connect with a loved one and it’s becoming an issue, change the environment in which you’re both communicating. Take a walk in nature together or find secure, neutral ground to talk things out (in the real world).
- If you’re feeling frustrated at being unable to make big changes in your life, stop for a moment and breathe. Turn the direction of your focus inwards and first work on changing one small thing about how you live your life, that is totally within your control. That could be something as simple as starting a morning gratitude ritual, being kind to the neighbour’s dog despite their constant barking, or actually flossing your teeth daily (like you say you do).
“The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.”
There’s always another way, if you believe there is.
Changing big things starts with small steps.
And guess what happens when everything is “figureoutable”?
It doesn’t just mean “we can”.
According to Marie, it makes us unstoppable. :)
Further motivation to find new paths:
1) Read Lori Deschene’s practical post on how to open your world to new possibilities
2) Watch Marie talking about figuring things out on stage at Oprah’s SuperSoul Sunday
3) Be inspired to take action by Apple’s famous advert, which highlights that those who think differently can achieve great things.
* The phrase “There’s always another way” is used regularly by one of my real-life mentors. This blog post was prompted by a discussion we had around finding alternative options when the way forward seems unsatisfactory.
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