Let’s be honest, at some point we all hit a wall. A Plateau. A Bad Day. Writer’s Block. Whatever you might call the moment when things stop working. It is a natural part of reaching for a goal. It’s just a part of life. How you handle that moment is crucial though. If handled wrong the wall becomes too big to overcome, and we become frustrated, irritable, and maybe worst of all, we give up. If we handle the moment well, the wall becomes a hurdle. It doesn’t mean it doesn’t take work or time to overcome, but we soon find ourselves back on track to achieving our goals. Here are a few ways to handle those moments when we hit a wall in our life.
Take a Break.
We work hard. Life can get busy. Sometimes we hit the wall when we are tired, and that makes the wall bigger than it actually is. It is OK to take a break. Walk away from the wall for a while. Part of this is being aware of your situation and self. To be honest enough to take a real break. I know this is difficult for us when we are striving to achieve a goal. But when you feel rested, you might discover that the wall was not that big in the first place.
Ask for Help.
This option is also hard to do sometimes. Our pride gets in the way, but consider that great athletes have coaches, great writers have editors, and simply, CEOs have friends. We are people, not machines. Getting someone else’s perspective on a situation is a valuable asset in overcoming a “wall” moment. When working on a goal, our focus can actually blind us from seeing new opportunities or hurdles that trip us up. Life is a team sport; you don’t have to do it alone.
Try a New Approach.
One way around a wall is a new approach. Asking for help can lead us to consider new approaches. But we can figure it out sometimes when we hit a wall, and we hit a wall, and we hit it again. If we keep doing the same thing and keep hitting a wall, it is time to change. As a coach and teacher, I am always evaluating the outcome of a lesson or practice plan. Track is the best example here. As a track coach I paid attention to my runners’ times for their events. If they didn’t improve their time after a few weeks, I knew I had to change their training. The same holds true in our pursuit of a goal. Hitting a wall, especially a couple of times, is a sign to try a new approach.
The last approach may be the most important, learn. When we move into a new area of life or step closer to a goal, we are entering new territory. And we might not have the knowledge or skills for this step forward. My first novel has been out for six months. Sales started out well, in fact, I sold a couple of hundred copies. But now sales are almost to a stop. I have hit a wall. This wall is because of my lack of knowledge about promoting a book. It will take some time, but I am learning about different ways to self-promote and hiring an agency to promote a book. This wall was created because I had not gained the knowledge needed to promote a book well. Hitting a wall is a part of striving for a goal. It is part of life. Using one of these strategies should help you get through the moment and back on track.
Jamey Boelhower is a husband and a father of six. He is currently an Instructional Coach and an adjunct professor for Central Community College, Nebraska.
You can read his regular blog “It Is All Connected” by clicking here.
And you can follow him on twitter at @jdog90.