Fear, Doubt and Reaching Your True Potential
"I would be so much more productive if I could just stop worrying all the time."
A patient who came to see me for lower back pain shared this with me when we were talking about his current stress levels.
He was a talented guy with his own business. He had found his mission and what he wanted to offer to the world.
Yet he was battling with fear, self-doubt, overwhelm and stress. He felt like he wasn't making progress and that there was one thing standing in the way of him achieving what he wanted to: his own mind.
He felt like he was putting a lot of resources into his business like time, money, energy and effort but he wasn't getting the results. Things were beginning to take their toll on his life outside of work: he wasn't sleeping well, had developed lower back and stomach pain in addition to regular states of anxiety.
This situation can often be turned around by adopting one practice.
Living with Purpose
I love this quote. Knowing the hearts deepest desire fills our life with purpose, passion and makes us feel alive.
It's profoundly sad when we discover what we were put here to do and yet our own mind is the one thing stopping us reaching our potential.
It's not about being successful to impress others or about making more money. They are the by-products of someone reaching their potential.
If you have a mission you’re working towards, learning to meditate could be the best investment you ever make.
Meditation is one of the most powerful, practical, productivity-enhancing practices ever created.
If you have your own business, if you have career goals or are driven to achieve something special this year, it’s likely that your mind is firing non-stop.
Maybe you’ve tried to meditate before and found that your mind wouldn’t stop wandering off or that you couldn’t sit still long enough for any benefits to kick in.
It’s actually not easy to “just relax” and switch off. Maybe you’ve tried yoga or another form of mind-body exercise and you relaxed a bit but your mind was still in over-drive.
Perhaps you’ve thought about meditation but decided that it wasn’t practical. Or, you think that the time you spend meditating is time that you could have spent focusing on your work, your business or moving towards your goals.
Well, if you want to perform optimally at anything that requires you to think strategically, plan and make decisions, then you need to find a way for your mind to recover.
The Subconscious Mind
The problem for so many of us now, is that our brain doesn't get a chance to stop. Over-analysing and obsessive thinking about our work puts us in a state of fear and self-doubt. This leads to procrastination, overwhelm and decreases our ability to make decisions. We are not in the state to think creatively or come up with solutions. This creates more worry and more self-doubt.
To maintain a state of focus, clarity and motivation all day, then there also needs to be an "off-switch".
When trying to build muscle at the gym, it’s in the rest time when new muscle is laid down. It's just as important as the "time under tension" lifting the weight. Training the same muscle group everyday becomes counter-productive for growth, and over working your mind is no different.
Meditation works by helping you relinquish your conscious mind to access your unconscious mind. Dropping into the unconscious mind allows deep rest.
Meditation also allows us access to the deeper parts of our consciousness for increased self-awareness and also more awareness of the world. This increases our emotional intelligence, wisdom, focus and clarity.
The increased productivity and creativity that can come from a restorative session of just twenty minutes of meditation, is far more valuable than spending twenty minutes working on your business in a sub-optimal state.
Making decisions from a fear of failure have completely different consequences than the outcomes from choices you make feeling clear, focused and confident of your mission.
If your job is to make decisions for your own business or somebody elses, wouldn't it make sense to invest in what helps you be as effective as you can at this process?
Letting your mind rest, learning to relate wisely to fear, overwhelm and doubt as well as staying clear and focused on your goals will all lead to you reaching your potential. This has an immensely positive flow on effect to life outside of work including greater moments of joy and happiness, as well as work satisfaction.
Does self-doubt and the fear of failure prevent you from being clear about your mission?
On a daily basis, how much of your work is hindered by anxiety, self-doubt,or feeling overwhelmed? Does this carry-over to affect outside of work?
Do you feel that you would be much more effective and productive if you could just move beyond worry and doubt? Is procrastination and overwhelm effecting your business and your ability to think creatively?
Want to learn more? Take a look at our upcoming retreat schedule