SECRETS OF A SOCIAL WORKER

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Tag: progress

Failing Forward

What is the opposite of success?
(*Hint*   The answer is not failure)

The opposite of success is quitting. 

When we quit, that is when we give up any opportunity we have to succeed. We miss out on the opportunity to see what it is we’re really made of. And how can we succeed if we don’t try? We have to put ourselves out there and learn to be vulnerable to failure…To fail means that we tried, which is different than quitting. Failing helps to push us forward.

You have to be willing to fail in order to obtain success, it’s the price we pay for success. Life’s greatest teacher is failure. Who would you be today if you never failed, if no mistakes were ever made? Failure is how we learn what it is that we want, and it’s how we make changes to ensure more success the next time we try. It’s when we learn to be vulnerable that we can truly succeed…

Make Mistakes
Mistakes gain us experience. And mistakes will always help us learn resiliency. Trial and error is our best friend when it comes to failure because we will forever be making mistakes. It’s a continual process. We’ve all heard the saying, “nothing worth achieving comes easily.”

Roll The Dice, Shake Things Up
It is true that when we try something new there is risk of failing, but isn’t that when we also succeed?  Risk comes with reward. To risk means to be bold and find what it is you really want in your life. Embrace risk, embrace failure and make it a part of your routine.  Success will not always come naturally. To have success in every aspect of our lives would be boring. I do not view complete success as a good thing…It means that we are not pushing ourselves enough, we are not risking enough, and we are not leaving the comfort zone we’ve created. Risk keeps life interesting.

Focus On You
Most people experiencing numerous successes have more than likely encountered negativity and setbacks. Remind yourself that you cannot always see this on the outside. We all have a story, focus on yours. Reflect on your own setbacks and mistakes. Focus on moving forward, always. If something is not moving forward, if something is done and over with, leave…Move on. You cannot continue to water a dead flower.
And as a small tip-if you continue to experience the same setbacks and make the same mistakes, you may have to take a look at yourself to see if you’re the problem. We cannot take shortcuts–in order to succeed we have to be patient, focused, and disciplined. It’s all about baby steps here.

Feel The Fear
We can’t live with regret, and so often we fear it… We live in a lot of fear. But we cannot let our fears hold us back. We need to feel into our fears. We can still move forward even when we are fearful.
Ask yourself, what is it that you want when you eliminate your fears? If there was no such thing as failure or regret (AKA fear) what would you try to achieve? When you’re honest with yourself about your fears, life starts making more sense.

It’s Temporary
Both success and failure are temporary. The beautiful mistakes you make and the various achievements you experience will not last forever. So count your blessings, and also take a deep breath because it can only go up from here.

Be Humble
Our failures have kept us humble. As humans, we can better relate to one another when we can be honest and accepting of failures. We need these reminders of what it is to be humble. If it wasn’t for failing,  we wouldn’t know what it is that we are capable of. Success is so much sweeter when it is earned! We have to accept and admit to our failures.

The best mistakes of our lives are made when we fail. Get out there and make those mistakes, roll the dice, focus on yourself, face your fears, know that all things are temporary, and choose to be humble.
Be easy on yourself. Be flexible with yourself. Think outside of the box. Oh, and most importantly, put yourself first (it’s okay to do that sometimes).

Failure is success in progress ~

-keep shining

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Leave The Driver’s Seat

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All of us want some element of control in our lives. We try to plan out that five-year check list. We try to prepare for each day, every interaction, etc. However, all of us could use a lesson in letting go….We need to let go. We need to trust that things will work out the way they’re meant to, and that by letting go life will bring us to where we are needed most. It doesn’t matter how much we try to plan and control, there is always a chance it won’t work out. Life often has different plans for us than we have for ourselves, and that’s just the way it goes!

~Not being in control isn’t the same as being out of control.

I’ve had a few people in my life tell me that I need to work on letting go of control. I struggled with that for some time, because how do you just let go? How can you just assume things will work out, and not feel the need to have control over the outcome? Then recently I heard the above quote not being in control isn’t the same as being out of control, and it all began to make more sense to me.
Letting go of control means being open to many outcomes. This kind of mindset is healthy and it helps us to stay present; it helps us to worry less because we aren’t so focused on ensuring things work out just the way we planned them to. Being out of control is so much different than that. Being out of control means not having conscious control over our behaviors; to be unruly or wild. These two concepts are polar opposites from one another, yet we combine them to mean the same thing. We combine the concept of letting go of the need to control with the concept of being out of control. We combine a healthy outlook on life to being unruly and ‘out of hand’.
Letting go is to accept the unknown. It means being less stressed and open to new and unexpected possibilities. And how exciting does that sound, if we are open to it?! There is no event or interaction in your life that you can have complete control over. Of course, sometimes this can be stressful and frustrating, but at the end of the day what option do we have? We need to loosen up our expectations as to how we look at the world and our ‘plans’. If we don’t loosen up, we give energy to things that are not in our control, and what a waste of time that is.
Sometimes letting go means that our life feels stagnant, but why do we always need things to be progressing or moving? Progress can be a stand-still. Being stagnant can be growth if we view it through a positive lens, and it can be an important piece of life we don’t want to miss out on. When we are constantly planning out the next thing and ‘controlling’ situations, we miss out on the ease and beauty within those stand-still moments. It’s these times where we have an opportunity to exhale and ‘just be’ for a while. Keep present, as everything happens there; only this moment truly counts. And quit panicking, progress can be stagnant but that doesn’t mean we aren’t moving forward.
There is no magic answer as to how to let go and make this an effortless habit. It is difficult for me every single day. But, remembering these little tidbits of positive reframing around our thoughts regarding control is a great first step. Acceptance is also key here. Accept the uncertainty of each day and the challenges it will bring. The challenges we face each day are what makes us resilient and what makes us better, more patient and appreciative people. Reminding myself of these things has reduced my stress and helped me to be more grateful in each present moment. Taking a step back, breathing,  and enjoying life’s curve balls has made me a better friend, sister, daughter, coworker; the list goes on and on!
And just in case you forgot….Not being in control isn’t the same as being out of control.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.
-keep shining