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Influential Leadership: Eight Things You Need to Master to Develop Your Resolve
Life is about a series of lessons, and it takes challenges to often get the best out of us. You never know how good you are until challenges refine you. We will, at times, hit setbacks; the important thing is to understand that this is not the end of the journey, but a critical juncture for learning and becoming better. Your determination and grit to rebound from setbacks will be an asset that will be crucial to your success.
You could be embarking on a journey to fulfill your vision, or perhaps try hard to break new habits or learn a new skill-set. It is easy to make excuses or to give up when you go through challenges. This advice comes from someone who has been through the hard knocks of life.
Anything worthwhile does not come easy. The Instagram or LinkedIn images of success arrive with great sweat and tears, frustration, and disappointment. These never make it to the pictures. If you intend to take on a challenge, prepare yourself for all of these. You will go through all forms of emotions you never thought existed. These experiences develop your character, build wisdom and experience, and the life lessons that come from them are invaluable.
One common thread running through characteristics of successful people is perseverance. They apply effort to achieve despite difficulties, failure, or opposition. The mental toughness required will test you and will be an excellent asset for your entire life.
Here are a few tips that can help you on this road.
1) Set an intention.
Commit to yourself what you want to achieve and commit to the work you need to accomplish this. Understand the effort required to achieve what you need and set milestones for it. Once you have, remove quitting from your vocabulary.
Prepare to have days when you are not inspired; this is part of life. Every time you fall off-track, put it in context. Your actions for the day failed, but you are not a failure. The right mindset and habit will bring about the best version of you. Life is a journey. Your journey is unique to you; keep moving forward.
When you hit that inevitable snag and are feeling sorry for yourself, here are a few suggestions to consider.
2) Reflect on what is going on.
It is a mind game; once you succeed in your mind, half the battle is won. At times you have to reflect on what creates the blockages in your mind. How are you reacting to stumbling blocks? What about your background influences the way you respond to current situations?
For example, I grew up in a household where the money ran out, and the answer was often, "God will provide." As I observed as a child, this was so traumatic, as we had to wait for the day that this God would provide. The stress in between to a seven-year-old was unbearable. I have, in turn, ended up so fearful of running out of money. As an adult, it probably drove me to make the highly cautious moves about money, which may not have been optimal for me in the end.
It is essential to, at times, revisit the past and engage it from an adult point of view. Understand the behaviors that are a result of the past so that they do not hinder your journey.
[Related: Where You Start Doesn’t Determine Your Success, But These Three Things Can]
3) Seek someone who has been on this journey.
Look out for people who have attempted what you are trying to do. Sometimes they are not too far. If you do not have any, it may indicate an area where a coach can assist.
The guided process of a coach will help reveal to you many areas that can be supported for growth. Online resources on topics of interest are also numerous and can be easily accessed. Use these for your benefit. There is also a minefield of biographies of successful people who have gone through immense adversity. Learn from their lives as well as lessons they have learned along the way.
4) Build upon your strengths.
Challenge yourself to stick it out. Tell yourself that you are capable and talented at taking on challenges thrown at you.
When you fall, understand that the following emotions are only part of a process and not an indicator to give up. Stand up and try again. Failure is part of the learning process. Reframe what you perceive as a failure to be a "challenge."
5) Develop a support system.
I can reflect on the many times that I ventured onto a challenge; my partner and friends have always been an immense source of support. These are the very same people I can go back to on my tough days, and the support is always there without judgment.
The worst thing you can have is a circle of friends who do not support you when you are attempting to make significant strides in your life. Supportive people are always there and may take forms that we do not even envisage. Reach out to them, as they will be your incredible outlet and source of motivation to get back into the hang of things.
There are also many resources of support groups for anything you can think of online. Reach out to them, evaluate if they meet your needs for where you are, and use the buffer they provide where possible.
[Related: Take a Leap Before You Grow Wings]
6) Resilient people are an asset; surround yourself with them.
You are highly unlikely to master resilience and not give up if you hang around quitters all the time. The saying that we are an average of the friends we keep is true. Re-evaluate your circles. Are you hanging around resilient people? If not, re-assess your networks and identify where you need to make changes.
Spending time with people who are resilient is helpful and will assist you in developing habits that strengthen your resolve. Reach out to them whenever you reach a point of giving up and leverage the immense value they bring.
Life will happen and sometimes will get in the way. To stay on course, always attempt to pursue your balance by spending quality time with family and friends. When you hit a snag, pause, reflect, but do not in any way give up.
Resting is a powerful tool we hardly use. Sometimes focusing your attention on something else helps as a distraction. Surprisingly, you may notice some parallels that can add value to what you are seeking to achieve.
8) Reframe your view of failure.
Even when you prepare yourself never to give up, you will not be immune to failure. You may fail, even more often than not. The way you deal with failure will be a crucial differentiator and set you apart from everyone.
Have the fortitude and a perspective of seeing failure as a lesson. Learn to have a backup plan in place to offset any losses that arise through failure.
Remember, it is a journey. Make the best of it.
[Related: Focus on What is Going Right]
Phumza Dyani is the Chief Marketing and Sales Officer for Broadband Infraco.
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