Getting Unstuck – The Power of Purpose
Do you ever have trouble getting something done? Something big?
(Or maybe something that feels big?)
When faced with a rather large task or project, it is easy to get bogged down in the details and the heaviness that comes with them. We can experience what feels like a never ending process of having to check a bunch of boxes to advance something toward completion. And when the project we are working on requires us to do something new – something uncomfortable and challenging – it is easy to get mired in feelings of fear, frustration and anxiety. All of these things can keep us feeling stuck.
Our focus goes from the joy of getting something done to the frustration of having something undone. In this state, many of us tend to become rather mechanized, as we try to get clear on the steps before us and what we need to do to accomplish them. We can also put a lot of pressure on ourselves, beating ourselves up for any lack of progress and failing to recognize and acknowledge ourselves for what we have done.
We may become easily distracted by things that we know will be easier and potentially more enjoyable – tasks that don’t really need to get done right now (or at all), and things that may really be more appropriately delegated to others. We can get sucked into unproductive activities, such as surfing the internet, engaging in idle conversation, taking several coffee breaks, or – my personal favorite – making more lists of all the things we need to do and identifying the steps we need to take in order to get them done. This is actually a great practice when we are focused, but in a procrastination mode it can become relegated to planning to plan – and then plan some more – until we have a rock solid strategy that we never actually implement.
It may feel as though you are spinning your wheels – running like heck,
but not getting a whole lot of traction.
I know this, of course, because I have experienced it myself. Many times. And I have worked with a lot of people who fall into this pattern as well to recognize what’s happening and shift into something that will get them back on a more productive track.
One of the most powerful things I have found to break out of a “spinning your wheels” cycle is to take a few moments to revisit your purpose – or the larger mission or goal you have which relates in some way to what you are doing.
- Get clear about what – or who – the work is for.
- How will it improve the quality of life for yourself or those around you?
- In what way will it help people, contribute to something greater, or allow you to achieve a meaningful goal for yourself?
You don’t have to take several hours to do this. Just stop yourself for a few moments and ask, when this project/task/ initiative is finished, what bigger goal or purpose will it accomplish? What would you like to accomplish? Write it down. Add to it as you think of additional bonuses. Now, sit for a moment and see if you can envision what it would feel like to satisfy that larger purpose, vision or goal. See if you can feel it so clearly that you are actually grateful for it.
This simple act will help you reconnect with something that will fuel you beyond the minutia. It will give you the courage and strength to walk through your fear or hesitation to do something that you may not be all that good at yet. And it will help you to get back to the joy that comes through the process as well as the achievement of the end goal.
When you go about accomplishing things in this way, all that you do will become infused with a new energy – one that uplifts, delights and inspires. Whatever you are experiencing as you work on something will be the same thing people will experience when they partake of the fruit of your efforts. The more we keep this in mind on a daily basis, the more we will experience the satisfaction and gratification of having done something truly meaningful – something that lifts us out of the mundane and into a place of magnificence. And everyone that comes into contact with our work will be better off because of it.
Copyright Synchronistics Coaching & Consulting 2010. All rights reserved.
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