We are in the middle of September and three quarters of the year is over. Think back to New Year’s when 2013 was a new clean slate with potential and goals. We hopefully reached some of those goals and have seen good things come to pass. Perhaps you’ve reached your desire to run a marathon, sew a quilt, ride your bike to work, clean out the garage or organize the storage room in the basement. Whatever you’ve done, big or small, celebrate the steps you have taken.
For some us, the year hasn’t gone the way we planned. Perhaps there’s been a death in the family, a cancer diagnosis, divorce, a rained out vacation, power outage and flooding from storms… These major trials interrupt our plans, goals and dreams. Ever feel stuck like you’ve made no progress? Or guilty that you aren’t where you want to be emotionally, mentally or physically?
For me, this year was interrupted by a labral tear in my right hip. When all is said and done, this trial will have taken up seven months of my year. My list of goals I made back in January sits untouched and unaccomplished. Talk about feeling guilty and unsuccessful; that pretty much defines how I feel.
Recently I had lunch with a good friend who is also a professional organizer. She does corporate training on time management. She was very kind to listen to me list off my goals to her as we ate. With each one, I shared what stopped me from reaching that goal. Some were valid reasons and some were just based on fears or lack of confidence. All the roadblocks that stopped me from reaching goals showed me how difficult this year has really been. So I asked her, “Now what do I do?”
Perhaps you’re having the same kind of year. Maybe you’re like me, saying to yourself “It’s September and what do I have to show for it? Now what do I do?”
My friend had these encouraging words: Trials, road blocks, and disasters do happen and it is perfectly okay to “hunker down and get through” just to survive. In some cases, that’s all we can do. There will come a time when we start to turn the corner, come out from hiding, or just breathe again. When we are back on our feet or even one foot again, take baby steps. Do the small steps you can take and just start. Our fears block us from starting. Once we’ve made the initial attempt and made the movement forward, we will find we can keep going. We’ll feel better about the small progress we have made. Like our teachers or parents have told us, “Some progress is better than no progress.”
So I encourage you to press on. You don’t need to climb the mountain or run the marathon tomorrow, but as you move forward you will be one step higher and one step farther if you, like myself, just decide to start. I choose to finish 2013 strong and pray and hope that 2014 is a better year.
Photo © Eduardo Gonzalez diaz / depositphotos