This is going to be a quick one. A client of mine recently said to me “You know, I’m really enjoying giving myself challenges. It’s fun. It’s like life is an interesting video game and I’m always looking forward to leveling up”.
The reason this is significant is because this guy came out of the depths of survival mode. He used to obsess over death and was terrified of it. He feared time running out. He feared being a failure to his family. He had very low self esteem. I remember our first Zoom session where he had his camera setup in a way so only the upper half of his face would show. It was dark in his room. I kept asking him to sit up and show his face. He unconsciously was hiding again and again. He would avoid everything. People, places, situations. He didn’t want to interact with the world. He didn’t feel he had a right to. Failure was his identity. Fast forward to six months later. The Zoom session is quite different. From his car, in bright sunlight, enjoying a peaceful day, a half grin on his face almost throughout the session. He says he loves challenges. There was no magic. There was a lot of work put in and it had to start somewhere. The reason he’s here is because he started with ONE tiny little challenge. One thing that he focused on and faced consistently. Keyword: Consistently. I’m deliberately not mentioning what that thing was, because it doesn’t matter. It would also invite unnecessary analysis into what the coaching process looks like, which wouldn’t be helpful because of how unique the approach is from person to person. All that matters is that it was in his domain of control. That he could focus on it and manage it. That he could break a certain pattern of existence and replace it with a new one. That started a train of accomplishments. Little by little, a step at a time. To his credit, he followed through. He didn’t necessarily understand, but he followed through. Without getting into his business, that image of him sitting in his car with a grin on his face tells a story. A really good one. I keep saying again and again, don’t underestimate progress. Nothing is insignificant. If it moves you in a positive direction, it’s significant. It’s not our job to value it based on how we observe the rest of the world, which way more often than not is a skewed perspective. Our unique existence and our challenges are NOT a competition.