When it comes to goals, it can be very easy to get caught up in the perfect plan and execution. The reality is, this is completely unrealistic because we are humans and are not robotically ‘perfect’ at all times. Today’s article is going to be diving into the reality of what it means to respect the journey while trusting the process of achieving your goals so that you can have more ease with the unfolding of what it is that you want.
The All or Nothing Saboteur
One day I was having a coaching call with a Mindset and Personal Training client who has a goal to lose 30lbs. We’ve been working together a few months now and there have been huge shifts in their mindset. That has directly had a very positive and powerful impact on their behaviour with exercise and also nutrition. Naturally, they were experiencing a plateau – which for me, as a Coach, is a very exciting time because I know this to be an opportunity for them, as it means they’re on the brink of a massive breakthrough.
We started talking about their goals of wanting to lose 30lbs and how they were frustrated that they had only lost 7lbs when they had been doing all the things consistency with exercise and nutrition, etc. for the last few months (which was very true).
As I listened to my client, I started to discover the sneaky impact of solely focusing on the end goal and how this is a very easy way to put oneself in a pressure cooker to perform in a very black and white fashion. What happens when we get caught up in the ‘how we think things should unfold’ or the ‘by when we should have achieved our goal’, we begin to live in an ‘all or nothing’ or very ‘black and white’ state of mind.
This essentially leads us down the path of ‘if you’re not achieving your goal when you think you should, and if it’s not showing up how you think it should, then you’re failing’.
This is a very justifiable situation for people to bail, self-sabotage, and give up altogether – because ‘what’s the point of continuing if you’ve failed already or if you think it’s not working’? This is why an ‘all or nothing’ mindset creates limitations, rather than being limitless for possibilities.
After listening to my client share their experience and their frustration, I started to dive into the possibility of respecting the journey, while trusting the process with them.
I asked: “If you imagine your dream self in complete harmony with your body, how would you be? Better yet, how wouldn’t you be?
Some possibilities could be that you would feel comfortable in your skin, happy, proud, confident for achieving your goal, and full of gratitude.
So, for example, if you’re feeling the opposite of that, which is not aligned with your goal, how could you ever achieve your goal not being aligned with it?”
When my client said they had only lost ‘7lbs’ – I pointed out that: “These 7lbs are part of the 30lbs you wish to lose – this is evidence that you are achieving your goals. This 7lbs is a piece of your end goal, and right now is the unfolding of your journey.”
To be even more transparent, the sense of achievement and growth is gained from the experience of the little pieces of the journey coming together, not simply acquiring the end result.
The Power of Embodying Respect and Trust
When we choose (whether it be consciously or unconsciously) to live in dissatisfaction with where we are, we are disrespecting the journey it takes to achieve our goals as we are failing to trust the process.
The reality is, if we knew how to achieve our goals, we would have achieved them already. This is why trusting the process is so key, because it allows the space for the unfolding of the journey. When we over-analyze or obsess over the details of achieving our goals, we suffocate the natural experience from showing up because we are only holding space for how we think it should be – always remind yourself, if we knew how to achieve our goals, we would have achieved them already. This moment of realization is an opportunity to surrender to the process and give more space for the unfolding of how it’s meant to be.
When it comes to acquiring what it is that we want – more money, dream body, a successful relationship, etc., we are in fact chasing the experience of these specific desires.
If I said to you, you get to have your dream body, but your mindset of how you think about yourself now stays the same, would you be happier?
If I said to you, you get to have all the money in the world, but you don’t get to spend it or use it whatsoever, would you be excited?
Or if I said to you that you get to have your dream partner but you’re going to bring forth all your baggage from previous relationships, would you feel fulfilled?
It’s not the thing we are seeking or the end destination, it’s the experience and the unfolding – despite the unfolding sometimes being a brutal and impatient experience, it is in fact preparing us for the end result and the goals we are working towards. We think it’s the end goal that satisfies us because it’s the last thing we see and experience from that journey being complete.
When we get present to the journey we are on and pay attention to the unfolding of what we want, we will discover the puzzle pieces coming together. When we spend our time focused on what’s missing or not yet in our current reality, we are giving our energy to what it is we don’t want: the lack of what it is that we do want.
It’s a very fine line when it comes to respecting the journey and trusting the process. When we become present to how we are showing up and experiencing our journey, we get to experience more than just the end result. Respecting the journey, while trusting the process is a gift we get to give ourselves. It’s the gift of getting to have it all.