Have you ever wanted to experience growth in a certain area of your life, even making repeated attempts at progress, only to find yourself reverting to the same place you were when you started? You’re not alone. It is habitual for many of us to do the exact same thing with the expectation of achieving a different result. I, myself, have been guilty of this numerous times. According to Einstein, this is in fact the very definition of insanity. And in my experience, it’s also a good way to get stuck in a rut.
By continuously walking the same path, doing the same things over and over again, we eventually dig ourselves into deep trenches. (Picture the caged wolves at the zoo, pacing the perimeter of their enclosures until they’ve worn a rut into the ground.) The only way to break the cycle and climb out of those grooves of robotic repetition is to do something different.
This might not sound daring, but if you’ve ever tried to climb out of your comfort zone, you know how difficult and terrifying it can be to do something different. It is so much easier to stay within the confines of our established routines. It’s safe, it’s comfortable, it’s familiar, and we know exactly what to expect. Unfortunately, staying in this place also means sacrificing any chance of progress.
In the case of my novel, I think I always knew on some level that my sporadic approach to writing was never going to lead to a finished product. But my behavior wasn’t because of laziness or even a lack of drive. It was the fear of leaving the safety of my own comfort zone. As long as I was perpetually working on that first draft, there would never be a cohesive story for someone to read. There would never be a completed manuscript for someone to judge or reject. So by staying in that safe space, I was protecting myself from having to face any of that.
But at some point, I needed to move. I needed to make progress. And in order to do that, I knew I needed to do something different. Some of those differences included things that I’ve already mentioned in other posts. Things like Acknowledging Accountability and Building Balanced Boundaries and Creating Consistency. Those were seemingly small changes, but they created huge ripples in my efforts to make progress.
So what about you? In what area of your life have you been wanting to see growth and what is something you can do to make that progress happen? Think about it this week and make the decision to become a Purposeful WIP who Dares to Do Different.