In early November I was at a breaking point.
I had been pushing myself hard in my business and marketing, but it felt like I wasn’t making any progress. I was run down, depleted, and frustrated with everything. This lasted for several days and I knew I needed to do something to change my state of mind.
Over that weekend I went for many long walks and tried to record a selfie video to process what was going on in my life. I wanted to share my experience to help others in the same predicament. I wanted to demonstrate a resolution to my problem, instead of sounding like I was crying for help.
The Bigger Your Problem The More You Need To Try This Solution
The outcome of this process is to gain clarity on the reasons for your problems, struggles or challenges.
The first few videos I made were garbage: unhelpful, self-absorbed, and essentially complaining. Three days into my “drama”, I was towel-drying my hair after a shower and saw myself in the mirror. The towel on my head gave me the hook I had been looking for. I quickly put on my clothes and sat down to record a video.
What you’ll see in the video is how I coached myself into a brighter, more hopeful place, to see the gift, or the lesson, in my struggle, and a way out of what was blocking me.
I’ve modified the transcription of the video to make it easier to understand what you can do if you’re feeling stuck, or feeling lost and uncertain about what to do next.
First, watch the video
The emotionality of the message is just as important as the story itself. I hope this helps if you are struggling with any part of BEING in life. :-)
Lean Into Discomfort Instead Of Avoiding Uncertainty
This is how I feel today: like throwing in the proverbial, fucking towel! I need to share the struggles I’ve been having for the last few days.
Everything that’s happening in my life at the moment is about,
“Why isn’t it working?”
This is the wrong question to ask, because it has a negative focus.
I watched a livestream on Instagram that mentioned Les Brown. I found him on Spotify and began listening to, Choosing Your Future, Part 1. Sometimes these old-school, pseudo-religious personal development gurus are all about, “Come on! Raise your hands and feel good about this!”
His talk was good for about 15 minutes and then it started to get really annoying. Knowing what I do about neuroscience and our three brains, while there is a positive aspect to creating a vision and saying affirmations, those actions alone will not improve your life.
Why Your Actions Are Not Your Own
Has this ever happened to you? You had a long day working. It was stressful. A bunch of things went wrong. You get home…
What I took from his talk that was that it’s possible
Everything is possible!
You don’t have to say that it’s going to happen.
You don’t have to say it’s going to work.
You only have to keep saying (and believe),
Those words can move you towards considering different possibilities and potential next steps.
I’ve tried a number of things in my business over the last while that didn’t work out as I expected. I’ve been struggling with the clarity of my message, so I can better connect with my audience.
I was discussing this with a good friend who started as a client many years ago. I attribute to him as the person who helped me become a coach. When we worked together, he challenged me unlike any other client before him.
Transformation is my core message. It’s who I am.
Yesterday, I was working with a coaching client who was having a similar experience. She’s been on the fence about leaving her current job, because she thought she might get promoted within to a C-level position. Things changed recently for the worse and now she want out.
To make sure she was certain it was time to leave, I asked her to explain what kind of a work environment she wants to experience. What she told me was so beautiful, because it was so clear and simple. I read back my notes to her and asked, “Is this your current work environment?”
It was one of those moments that was fucking gorgeous in my work as a coach.
Coaching is the work I’m meant to do, because it’s the work I do on myself.
I love helping people get clear on what they want, and the actions they need to take. Yet this is what I’m struggling with for myself!
I love what Pema Chödrön has to say about discomfort in, Comfortable with Uncertainty. 108 Teachings on Cultivating Fearlessness and Compassion.
The central question of a warrior’s training is not how we avoid uncertainty and fear but how we relate to discomfort. How do we practice with difficulty, with our emotions, with the unpredictable encounters of an ordinary day? For those of us with a hunger to know the truth, painful emotions are like flags going up to say, “You’re stuck!” We regard disappointment, embarrassment, irritation, jealousy, and fear as moments that show us where we’re holding back, how we’re shutting down. Such uncomfortable feelings are messages that tell us to perk up and lean into a situation when we’d rather cave in and back away.
I help my clients do this.
I’m helping myself by sharing my story with you, because I’m leaning into uncertainty.
There’s been too much uncertainty in my life for so long. It’s like I’m holding myself up against the wall so I don’t lean too far forward, fall into the chasm, and can’t get back up.
This is a matter of necessary recovery.
Sometimes we have to pull ourselves back from the edge and stand up straight. We need to give ourselves the permission to lie down and recover. But our recovery can be short-lived if our aim is to keep moving forward, to grow, to evolve, and to transform.
So go ahead and lean into discomfort!
Comment below if you’re struggling, just like I was in early November.
It helped me to share my journey with friends, and it might help you to talk it through as well.
Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus! ;-)
I figured myself out and, well, you’re seeing the message right before your eyes:
Th-Ink Queerly — my passion project.
And now I have clarity about my message and my market:
I coach gay men to break out of the box that fucks with who they want to be!
Ready to break out?
Find out what’s holding you back with these 7 short, insightful, and fun videos and get back to being who you really are!