Do you feel like throwing in the towel or holding your hands up in despair?
Often we start on our goals and something steps across our day and we find ourselves diverting from our plans. That project in your filing cabinet or plan to have a healthier lifestyle. None of this means we are unreliable or undisciplined, but could be due to number of reasons. We could forget or run scared from the thought of all the effort and work needed. Maybe we rationalise our excuses and renegotiate when we will begin. Or perhaps you have started but came upon a list of barriers and have felt these are surmountable so you give up. How can you remain positive and stick with it in grueling times?
Overcoming obstacles at a moderate pace helps you overcome barriers allowing you to stick to things. But it requires your commitment and creating a good reminder system.Train your brain to deal with discomfort and view that tempting moment as an opportunity to practice restraint. When you set a boundary, don’t self sabotage your efforts by convincing yourself that you can start tomorrow or next week instead of right now.
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Change your focus. Build your faith in God through challenging struggles you face by asking yourself 5 questions
1| Are you searching for the light when you are in the darkness?
Part of our character formation as a Christian means we encounter criticism, discouragement, loneliness and suffering. Do not be disheartened when you encounter hard times.
God protects us in the darkness. His light luminates our ways. Even when you don’t sense it. He is ever present. You just have to realise He has not forsaken you even in the dark silent moments. John 1:5
2| Has someone said to you ‘it will all work out in the end’?
If you choose to trust God and hold firm to His promises. Over the fears. That scream at you. And block out everything else.
You will (eventually) see God working things out for your good. Romans 8:28
A good lesson is when you feel apprenhensive or filled with panic. And you think you will never rise above your situation. Ask God to help you trust Him more.
3| Are you filled with Doubt, Faith or Fear?
Doubts will creep in and make us question our fears. And why we should have faith in God. Though we feel compressed by pressure. Adverse moments pass.
Seek safety under the shadow of His wings where you will, not be crushed. 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 Know one thing. God’s character will never change. He knew what you would face today. He wants you to trust Him. Leave your doubts in the darkness. Let the light of God’s truth shine in your situation and give you that unwavering reliance on Him.
4| Do you believe that in your Pain God has a Purpose?
Some hurts in life will break our heart. We may think we will never recover. But years later as Joseph faced his brothers. With love he was able to say that what they had meant for evil. God meant it for good. Genesis 50:20
In life we seek advice daily whether personal or professional. From one who has encountered a similar difficulty. The best grief counsellors are the ones who have lost a loved one. Who turned their pain into a purpose to help others. As God comforts us, so we too should comfort others. 2 Corinthians 1:4-6
Learn to care for others. Like Christ extended to us.
5| Do you neglect to Pray?
When life takes over. Overwhelms your world. Disappointment blocks your heart. And situations fracture your outlook. Cast your cares on the One who cares most. Then turn to those who can support you in prayer. In love. And compassion. 1 Peter 3:8
To be glad when you face problems. Is easier said than done. But, know that they are helping you develop tenacity. Part of enduring nurtures strength of your character. And our characters are formed by the eternal hope. Romans 3:3-4
Pause for a moment. Take some time to reflect. And just rest in God. As you wait on Him.
We may know what is causing us to not stick with things and opt out or give up. But this is a reminder to take time to think about what the obstacles are that may be tripping you up and find solutions. Take things seriously and try not to bury your goals so that you forget them. View actions like pushing yourself into uncomfortable places as a chance to grow, not as an area of uncertainty. This takes a shift in your mental attitude. Set boundaries ahead of time so that you can recognise when you are rationlising excuses and are tempted to fall away from your plan. Try discovering new ways to like things you previously disliked by being creative. And know why this is so important to you. So that you remain consistent.