7 Reasons Why We Avoid Progress

7 Reasons Why We Avoid Progress

Hello Friends!

Have you ever been afraid to become a better you? That sounds crazy right. You’re probably saying, “why would someone be afraid of progressing in life?” We would like to think that we want and need progression in our lives, but very few people will admit to being afraid of it. I know I am.

I so desperately want to get better, feel better, and do better. So why does the thought of “being a better me” frighten me so much? There must be something wrong with me, right? WRONG!

Ron Edmondson is a church leader and pastor of Immanuel Baptist Chruch and is an avid believer in Jesus. I was introduced to him by one of my church elders and leader of the group that I’m in called Crash the Chatterbox, Bert.

Bert gave our class a handout that explained why we are afraid of progress written by Ron Edmondson. When I first read it, I thought the same thing you said, “Why would anyone be afraid of progress?” But then I started reading. The reasons he stated makes sense and has transformed my perception, so hopefully, it’ll transform yours as well. Let’s do this!

7 Reasons We Avoid Progress by Ron Edmondson

  1. It stretches us– Progress will lead to unchartered territories; areas that you have never been in before. The unknown can be scary
  2. It invites us– Progress loves to create interest in new activities and circumstances. In order to fuel and maintain the momentum, one must embrace the continuous change that is going to happen.
  3. You HAVE to improve– Progress requires more energy and effort as it progresses. Keep in mind, “You have to get better to get bigger.”
  4. It’s often messy– I like to say, “Anything worth having is going to require a fight.” If it were easy, everyone would be rich, everyone would be successful, everyone would have the spouse of there dreams.
  5. It often defies logic or boundaries– Think about this, 100 years ago, you would have been locked up in an insane asylum if you told them that is it possible to pick up a device, put it to your ear, and talk to someone 2,000 miles away in 30 seconds? Sometimes, stepping outside of the box will take you further than staying in it.
  6. It invites competition– “Show people a little progress and someone will want to join the fun!” -Bert V. In today’s social media infested society, it seems that everyone is losing their individuality to become more like celebrities, and the celebrities are copying each other.  So, maybe, if you progress, then others would want that for themselves, too.
  7. It begs for more– This couldn’t be truer. One time I thought to myself, “Ugh! Blogging requires so much time and attention, and I need my naps, soooo…. maybe this is something I don’t want to do. I’m glad I didn’t listen to myself but instead listened to God. I sounded stupid. Blogging has become my safe haven, my beach, my getaway. Why would I deprive myself of such harmony just because I need naps? Don’t be a turd in a hot tub, floating around, waiting to get flushed. Nurture what nurtures you.

Reading over this broadened my perception. I didn’t know that I was afraid of progressing until I said, “Yea, I’m afraid of that” to most of the reasons. I was like the chicken in the video clip. A part of improving, unfortunately, is taking a really good look at yourself. Not your outer appearance, but your soul. And you may not like what you see. I surely don’t! But you know what, it is very much worth it.

I love the feeling that I have when I know I’m improving myself. I feel great when I know something that I have struggling with is now no longer a concern. All it took what a hard look, a little vodka, and a whole lotta Jesus. Joking about the vodka, cause boy, I wish.

Anyway, thank you so so much for reading my thoughts. I appreciate all of the love that is shown to me and I love each and every one you in Jesus name. Stay blessed, family.

PS…sorry for all of the cute furry animals. I wanted to use furry cuteness to represent my mood, but I think all it’s going to do is make you guys go…

“Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement, and success have no meaning.” -Benjamin Franklin

 

 

6 Ways to Manage Your Emotions

Are you emotional wreck? Hell, right now, I am. I’ve always been a pretty sensitive person, but because of some of life’s challenges, I learned a long time ago how to hide my emotions from everyone. At the time, I thought I was managing them, when in fact, they were just being stored away in a very dark place.

When I was 15 years old, I began to notice that I was different from other people, very different. How I felt, what I liked, even my philosophy on life and it’s meaning, was very different from everyone else around me. I began to think that there was something wrong with me and this thought would eventually manifest into deeper, darker thoughts.

Since this year has been the most trying time of my 32 years of life, I have been forced to address emotions that I thought were long gone. When I first became sick, I was bedridden. Without realizing, I allowed the fear and uncertainty of Lupus cloud my judgment and my mind. I allowed negative thoughts to replace any hope I had of becoming healthy again, which exposed a lot of those old, buried feelings. I slowly began drowning without being consciously aware of it. I’m sure that’s why they say it’s never a good idea to have an idle mind. Thoughts can creep into your mind that will have you convinced that everything that you knew about yourself is a complete lie. Thus, becoming an emotional wreck.

Lately, I’ve had to practice how to handle my emotions, old and new, and I would love to share what has worked for me. So, below is a list of ways that you can keep your emotions in check.

  1. Know Your Triggers

We all have emotional triggers. Emotional triggers are situations or people that have the ability to cause a negative emotional response. For you, an emotional trigger can be friends, family members, or even the upcoming holidays. We may not have the ability to avoid our triggers, but we can certainly learn to live with them without becoming overwhelmed.

Once you are aware of your triggers, you can then deal with them accordingly. Remember, do what is best for you! If you need to remove yourself from the situation, do so. If you need to seek counseling or a support group to help you through dealing with the trigger(s) that just won’t go away, like a family member or boss, do it. Your emotional stability is what is most important.

  1. Don’t react right way

Have you ever lost your temper in a drop of a hat? Some of us *cough, cough* have the tendency to overreact while in the midst of emotional turmoil. Someone can say that one thing to drive you nuts, and then bam, you’re yelling and screaming, probably saying things you’ll later regret.

It’s better for your emotional state if you stepped back for a moment to ask yourself, “Is this worth getting upset over? Is this worth disturbing my peace over?” I’ll let you know right now, 8 out 10 times, the answer is no. Well, at least with me. When I think about it, there are very few people that are worth me compromising my peace of mind over, but admittingly, I am still a work a progress.

  1. Change Your Thoughts

I’ve spoken about this so many times. It’s really important that you have healthy positive thoughts. So, whenever you find yourself in emotional hell, you will already be convinced that you are awesome and strong and that you will get through whatever is happening at the time. Negative thoughts will no longer have room in your mind. You can change your thoughts by listening to inspirational speeches, reading motivational literature, or church.

  1. Do something that you love

When you’re immersed in something that you are passionate about and that you are focused on, your mind will be too occupied to become sad. Doing what you love uplifts and motivates you in ways that wouldn’t be able to imagine. It is also a great coping skill to get you through rough moments.

Do what you love as often as you can. That way, whenever you’re going through a rough patch, it’ll be second nature to jump straight into a healthy coping mechanism.

  1. See the bigger picture

One of my favorite sayings is, “There are 3 sides to every story; yours, theirs, and the truth.” Whatever may have happened to trigger a negative emotional response, try to step back to view the entire picture. For example, let’s say your co-worker comes into work upset with an attitude. It’s normally not like her because she usually comes in happy and chipper. She’s really not talking to you or giving you much attention. You could either take it personally and assume her attitude has to do with you, or you could try to consider other reasons why she’s being snappy. You never know what people are going through behind closed doors. Be a friend. Find out. Show support.

  1. Meditate

I am a huge fan of meditation. Sometimes I pray during mediation, sometimes I work on redirecting my busy thoughts. Mediation is a great tool to use due to some of its great benefits:

-reducing stress

-improving concentration

-practicing increase of self-awareness

-reducing depression and anxiety

If you take 5-10 minutes out of your day to meditate, you will begin to see a significant improvement when trying to get your emotions under control. People say it’s too hard because they are unable to get there brain to shut off. Meditation is not about getting your brain to turn off, but more about training your brain to redirect itself when you begin thinking about chores or errands or anything outside of self-improvement and growth.

Some days I don’t have to think twice about how to handle my emotions, but other days, I need to refer back to this list. It has been helping me real my emotions in when I feel they are out of control,  so I really hope it’s able to help you.

Do you have anything that helps you keep your emotions in check? Drop a comment below to let us know. I’m down for all suggestions. Again, I’m a work in progress *cough, cough*

“As you heal, you see yourself more realistically. You accept that you are a person with strengths and weaknesses. You make the changes you can in your life and let go of the things that aren’t in your power to change. You learn that every part of you is valuable. And you realize that all of your thoughts and feelings are important, even when they’re painful or difficult.” -Ellen Bass, Beginning to Heal

11 Ways to Self Motivation

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One of the struggles that I face dealing with a chronic illness, is the idea that being sick will be the rest of my life. I began to feel like waking up with aching pains, eating only broth because it is all my body can handle, the rashes and constant infections, the extreme fatigue, expensive medications…will be the rest of my life? I slowly began to see more darkness than light. The light became so dim, that I thought I couldn’t see it at all. I even began to allow the darkness to completely take over me, but then I had a quick and swift wake up call. I will share this “wake up call”  in a future blog post. Honestly, it’s still so fresh and new, I’m not quite ready to share it with the world. That wound needs to heal first. Although it was a tough lesson to learn, I am so grateful that I learned it. It gave me the push I needed to attempt to climb out of the darkness.

 

The first step for me was to write down what I want; what are my short-term and long-term goals. I then folded up the ‘long-term’ list and placed it in a safe spot. I didn’t want to obsess about not meeting my long-term goals while in the middle of accomplishing my short-term goals. I am definitely the kind of person that attempts to rush the process. I’m working on that as well. My short-term goals are very simple. Sometimes I feel like they’re too simple.Then I remembered what once I have accomplished even the smallest goal, it will then give me the courage to conquer the next one. I did this to show myself that there are things to live for and not allow darkness to swallow me whole. See, darkness convinces you that you are not worthy of being great. Darkness tricks you into believing that your circumstance will never get better and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. I digress.

 

One of my short-term goals is to lower my stress. There are many causes of a lupus flare, one being stress. Honestly, I’m sure it is a large part as to why I experience a lot of flares. One way that I am lowering my stress is listening to motivational videos and speakers. I’ve mentioned it in a couple of posts before, so this should let you know how beneficial and awesome I think it is. I’ve honestly learned to have more confidence in my ability to move past what I am going through in this season of my life. I usually listen to random speakers on YouTube, but there is one speaker in particular that grabbed my attention the very first time I heard one of this speeches and I wanted to share it with you. 6 Keys to Self Motivation by Les Brown has given me the motivation is rise above my circumstance and get through this season of my life. Les Brown is a motivational speaker, author, radio personality, former television host, and former member of the Ohio House of Representatives. He has inspired millions of people around the world to improve the quality of their lives. Here I am talking like I’m a walking billboard. Honestly, I’ve just heard of this guy and I want as many people to know about him as possible. If you’re struggling to find motivation for anything, this is definitely for you. Below is a breakdown

11 Keys to Self Motivation by Les Brown  

1. Self-Mastery

You must always continue to work on yourself to achieve self-mastery

-The greatest human ability is being able to become more. Ex. A dog can’t be anything other than a dog. A tree can’t be anything other than a tree.

-You have unlimited potential

-Find something that you’re passionate about

-Find something that gives you a strong sense of completion in order to develop your reputation

-You can work on yourself by reading books that inspire you, listen to motivational audio first to start your day. Your mind is more reception in the morning.

2. Live with Passion and Energy

-Make a conscious effort to be lively

-Stay away from negative and toxic people

-SMILE!

-We have a lot to be grateful for

-Your level of passion and energy determines how much you will accomplish and how well you can do it

3. Know What You Want

-What do you want? Be specific

-The more you are aware of what exactly you want, your subconscious will begin to align with what you want

-Write it down and keep it with you. Writing is an exercise that engages your subconscious mind

-Read it every morning, noon, and night. Reading causes you to focus and concentrate on what you want

-When doubt begins to cloud your mind to tell us we can’t accomplish our goals, this practice will help you focus and discipline your thinking to more positive thoughts

-You are powerful!

-You are a miracle worker!

-Self-doubt has conditioned your mind to forget this

4. Develop a Health Plan

-You can’t feel well and do well if you’re not healthy

-Respect your body because you are worth it

-Your body is the only vehicle you have to get you through this life

5. Monitor Your Inner Conversations

-Take charge of your inner thoughts

-Don’t listen to self-doubt

-When they pop up, change your thoughts

6. Visualize

-See yourself beyond your circumstance with the challenge already resolved

-Think about how you will feel once your goal has been accomplished

7. Know That You Have a Purpose

Write down 5 reasons why you deserve your goal

-When your having self-doubt, read your 5 reasons why you deserve your goal as a reminder

-Know that life can be tough with challenging moments

-You need a purpose in your life to get through the tough times.

*Your purpose can be anything. God speaks of serving others if you need a place to start*

8. Master Your Skill

-Increase your level of confidence by finding something that you are passionate about and become the best at it

-Only compete with yourself and no one else

9. Be Relentless

-Recognize that you will go through hard times

-It doesn’t matter how hard you get hit, but that you get up to continue the fight

-In the face of hard times, BE RELENTLESS!

10. Take Action

-Don’t wait for the “right time”

-The ideal situation does not exist

-Take action now towards your goals

-If you believe it, you can see it

-Don’t become discouraged if others do not see what you see

11. Focus On Something Larger Than Yourself

-Find a cause to contribute to that makes a difference

-It will drive you to become more, to become better.

“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” Les Brown