So, I’m a fan of big goals and high expectations. (I know I’m not alone there.) I’m also a fan of supporting yourself appropriately on the path to achieving them. (In education we call this scaffolding – providing the resources and supports needed to allow our students to meet the task at hand.)
Most often, we scaffold along the way, using a gradual release method that works like training wheels on a bike and feels (when done well) like that moment when the adult’s hand lets goes and you find yourself balancing upright and forward moving, breeze in hair and world majestically splayed out before you.
Sometimes though, even after we’ve become a pro at navigating the world on our proverbial bike, something happens – road bump, road block, road work or new route – and in order to make it over to the successful side of the street we need a little extra help. We need to bring back some of those scaffolds and supports for a little bit to help us comfortably through.
And the truth of the matter is, we don’t always do it. We often get caught up in how far we’ve come, how strong we think we need to be, and how perfectly we expect our journey to go once we’ve gotten solidly on that path. We don’t think we’re supposed to need help anymore.
Out of embarrassment, fear, ego or not knowing, we expect ourselves to keep up the work on our own with which we now do need some help or support. We shame ourselves into going it alone and when we can’t KEEP up, we beat ourselves up.
All the ways we’d never allow our loved ones to talk about themselves – we now find ourselves speaking the same to ourselves.
And though some of us, for some amount of time, may find the rigidity of high and unyielding expectations motivating in the moment, it usually isn’t long before we feel so lousy about the ways we aren’t meeting them that we lose our will to keep at it at all.
Then let’s talk ways we can support ourselves when times are tough. Really, they’re great strategies for any time, because you know what? YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE STRUGGLING TO BE HELPED. Yeah, let’s just go ahead and bust that myth. And while we’re at it, let’s bust the one that says that asking for help is a sign of weakness, m’kay?
Here are some ways you might scaffold for your success:
– ask for help
– accept help that’s offered
– actually use resources you already have
– eliminate a task or element of a task
– allow more time for it
– do it with a friend
– do it alone
– add music, dance or play
– use songs or shows as a duration timers
– create a structure or routine
– set recurring calendar notifications and reminders on your phone
– place post it reminders where you’ll see them (on the mirror, in your car, by the door, etc.)
– connect with your true motivation + inspiration
– create a mantra and repeat it at set times or trigger times
– stick a task onto something you already do habitually (like brush your teeth)
– track your progress (get my March tracking calendar here)
– use phone apps (Pomodroido for interval timers, Evernote for keeping track, Plant Nanny for tracking water consumption, etc.)
– create buddy system partnership check-ins
– use Facebook groups and other online support systems (like the one all Thriveandbloom Health customers get free awesome access to!! Miss that memo? Let me know and I’ll fill you in! Today I’m posting in the group on this very topic!)
– temporarily drop your reps, minutes, or other statistic expectations and ramp back up
– let yourself be happy with good until you can muster up great so that your goals and inspiration don’t get gone!
Now let’s play a game. What are ALL the ways you can ask for or accept help today? Where have you never even imagined that help might be had or found? What’s one thing that would make your life easier, and how can you ask for or allow help that could make it so?
Ahhh, how expansive that feels to me.
I so want to hear what comes up for you!
Pssstt. If you’re feeling bogged down by ways you DON’T feel like you can ask for help or think that you’ll ever receive it, with every can’t or won’t that comes and calls, allow yourself to breath deep, place your hands on your heart or your gut (or both), and just settle, simmer, be. See what comes. Who knows, maybe a way will surface. Maybe it won’t. Maybe some sort of emotion rises up, and if it does, you can welcome it in and see what it says. Maybe nothing much seems to happen at all. Let yourself try-on trusting that whatever does come is exactly what you need, even if you have no idea how or why! Go ahead, just give it a try! #poetpoints lol