“Just when the caterpillar thought the world was ending, he turned into a butterfly.” — Proverb
Remember your new year’s resolutions for 2020? Did you want to lose weight? Add weight? Spend more time with family? What did you set out to achieve…We all had these huge plans and somehow 2020 happened. The “zombie apocalypse” meant we spent a huge part of the year indoors.
Maybe during the lockdown, you tried to do a few things but it just did not happen for you, rather it left you feeling unmotivated, confused, and lost. You check on social media and you see everyone starting a new chapter and you feel stuck. Maybe you even feel restless and anxious as a result, because things did not quite happen how you wanted it.
We’d be looking at some things that might have contributed to this feeling, how to address them, and make a huge bounce back in the next 3 months. The world is going back to a semblance of normality, you can finish the year on a high.
Maybe you remember watching tom and jerry as a kid(or not), but there are episodes where tom has an angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other shoulder. Both telling him what to do, Just like Tom. We all have these two angels talking in our heads… Each and every one of us.
One of these angels is your inner self(the one you are born with as a child) and the other angel is the inner critic(the one that grows as a result of your past mistakes, failures and every other thing life defeats you with).
Your inner self is the childlike wonder that has you brimming with confidence when you are about to take a new step, the voice that fills you with imagination and wonder. The one you listened to more as a child. Want to eat, you’d eat, want to sleep.. You’d sleep. Want to climb down or up where you should not.. You’d try. This is the voice that made you crawl, walk and run even with the many falls in between.
The inner critic is the voice that grows with the conditioning of society, The voice that is always telling you to play it safe or you’d fail and people will laugh at you, it is the voice that reminds you of every time you’ve failed.
Every day we walk around with both voices shouting and it can get exhausting. But your inner self is YOU. the true YOU. that is who you should listen to because it has brought you this far. Your inner critic should take a back seat for the next three months
Remember that old cliche “if you do what you have always done, You would get what you have always got”
2. How You have questioned failure.
If you listened to your inner-self when the lockdown started and you failed. Your inner critic is having the laugh of his life and screaming “I told you so”. How do you go about this?
I’m glad you asked. First of all, When you start something new to change your life or improve your circumstances, you’re bound to encounter setbacks that would leave you questioning your decisions. Questions like:
This is a fast lane to feeling very restless. Feeling like you wasted all that time to achieve nothing. While it may look like that, asking yourself “what went wrong?”
is bound to produce negative responses and your mind feeds off this energy and empowers your inner critic(see how he gets stronger)
This leads to something even worse. When next you want to perform a task regardless of your inner critic, he starts chanting a different tune… Questions like
These lead to paralysis by analysis. You’d never make a move because you are stuck. You’d always find something you want to improve before you make the move.
The cure… train yourself to find what went right. Did you learn a new skill, did you get a new perspective on how things work?
In fact, start seeing the good in your world, ask positive questions like “What is the one positive outcome from trying and failing”
You’d be fine.
3. Start Small, Build Momentum to Avoid Burnout
To make the most of the next 3 months.. Try to avoid burnout by setting realistic goals with a realistic timeline.
Burnout occurs when you try to do so much in so little time. It is like going to the gym for the very first time and trying to gain Anthony Joshua type muscle in 2 weeks, by lifting weights 3 hours a day… You’d burnout and you’d quit.
If you experienced this before… It is time to try again but this time with a more realistic goal set over time. Break your goals into realistic plans you can do for 90 days. If you start small and commit 30 minutes twice a day for one hour, You’d have put in 90 hours of deliberate practice.
Studies show it takes 20 hours to get really good at a task. This of what 90 hours spaced out over 3 months can do for your year. It’s not too late to save the year.