Cam Taylor

Be inspired. Be focused. Be tenacious.

Five Keys to Next Step Living

Feeling overwhelmed by the road ahead? Facing a challenge that is paralyzing your hopefulness and causing you to freeze into inactivity?

You’re not alone – and there is hope! It’s called focusing on the next step of getting where you want to go.

stairs

If you want to achieve your goal, don’t focus on how far you have to go. Focus on the next step of getting there. Just the next activity. HC*

Walking This Out

After three and a half years of stops and starts, ups and downs, my recovery journey has reached a point of “basic” completion (except for one more minor surgery). I’m both hopeful and overwhelmed. Hopeful because I have a new goal to reach – overwhelmed because there are many steps I need to take to get there.

In order to reach my goal, I have surrounded myself with wise people and a pathway to help me get there. The reality is, however, I can have all the help I need at my finger tips but unless I put in the effort to practice “next step living,” it’s all a pipe dream.

Desire will not reach goals. Lots of people want things they never attain. We must prioritize and act…diligently over time. HC

An idea without action is only a fantasy. A true dream, or vision, requires legs. Put a foot on the floor and get walking towards your vision. HC

Five Key Elements for Next Step Living

Success in reaching one’s goal is not a formula but does include elements that are essential for goal achievement. Here are just a few I’ve found helpful.

  1. Set learning goals to close the gap

The gap between where you are now and where you want to be, or should be, is not called “failure.” It’s called “learning”! HC

There’s a gap that exist between where you are and where you hope to be. Learning goals serve as tangible steps to get where you hope to be. Instead of being overwhelmed by what you don’t know, choose to focus on where you need to develop (skills, attitudes, competencies) so you can move forward towards your desired destination.

  1. Practice solitude but avoid isolation

We need solitude. But isolation is a cancer to the soul. Get enough proactive solitude and avoid defensive isolation. They are different. HC

I’ve learned to be comfortable with long periods of alone time to heal and recover. Even now, I spent time alone to write, do research, and prepare for the work I do. The key to next step living is to be conscious of when solitude is turning into isolation and avoid it.

  1. Let pain travel with you

A surgeon doesn’t suddenly yell, “Oh crap! He’s bleeding!” He knows it’s part of getting to a good outcome. Don’t let a little pain scare you! HC

There’s pain that helps and pain that hurts. I’m referring here to pain that helps and makes us stronger. Next step living is the ability to take the next action even if it’s uncomfortable because it will enable us to get to our destination. Just like the surgeon, you don’t need to be shocked by a little bleeding (rejection, a failed attempt, someone saying “no”) but can learn to expect it as part of the process.

  1. Fear won’t kill you

Try one new thing tomorrow that you have been wanting to do, but have been too afraid to do. Notice the fear did not kill you and then see what you learn. HC

Fear can keep us from next step living. Usually our fear is made up of “False Evidence Appearing Real” and rarely is a legitimate threat. The key is to reframe fear for what it is, notice the limiting belief and try the one new thing you’ve been wanting to do.

  1. Chunk your work into bite-size pieces

Remember…research proves the brain can’t multitask. If you are doing something important, turn everything else off. It’ll increase performance by 50%. HC

In this day and age of bells and whistles, it’s hard to turn everything off and focus. I use the timer on my phone when I need to focus or go to a location where I won’t be distracted or disturbed. Multitasking is not a friend of next step living.

Now go and take your next step towards your goal!

What is the dream or goal you’re pursuing?
What about next step living resonates with you?

*all quotes are from Henry Cloud

Image source: Free image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net
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About Cam Taylor

Life and leadership coach, transition & change specialist, husband, dad, leader, writer, life long learner.

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