Have you ever been in that situation? You know the one. Where you're trying to make things happen and you meet obstacle after obstacle and it gets frustrating, right? You've asked your dentist, you've asked your best friend, you've asked your spouse, you've asked your dog, Chewy and you've even asked your two year old. No one has answers of what to do. How does that make you feel? Frustrated, angry, overwhelmed? See, I know the feeling because I had that experience a few weeks ago and I had to fall back on my own advice.
Dealing With the Elephant
An obstacle is like a big elephant that's sitting in a small bathroom. You just can't maneuver or find your way around. And here's the interesting thing about obstacles. They come up. Imagine being out in the middle of a desert naked and thirsty. There are no signs of water. There is no Dasani, there's no Fiji, there's nothing. No water in sight. In that moment of the obstacle you show how you deal with these tough situations. It's testing really your resolve. How do you move around the obstacle? In those moments, that's our opportunity to build muscle as an entrepreneur or a business person out there trying to make things happen in the world.
The interesting thing is that it's not complicated because there's only one thing to do. One very simple thing that you can do to overcome the obstacle. No, not fall out. No, not go crazy, not move to Bali. Even though that may not be a bad idea. I heard it's pretty nice over there.
One Simple Question
The one simple thing that you want to do is ask yourself a question.
What quality do I need to develop to show up at my best in this situation?
Now, when you ask that question you may get all types of responses in terms of what the Universe or intuitive guidance is giving you. It could be anything from creativity to patience to resourcefulness to persistence. You may get a range of things. The answer truly does come of what quality you need to develop in this situation. It’s not about focusing on how to go around or through the obstacle. It's really about being in that neutral place because obstacles many times are here to teach us lessons. Sometimes, it's about skill development, developing that quality to help navigate the challenge. Other times, it may be we need to go in a different direction or try something else. We want to remain in that neutral place to stay open to the lesson and the best way to do that is by asking that question.
We could try to force things. I've done that before. I'm a driver. That's my personality. But when we do that, a lot of times we'll create a whole lot of unnecessary drama that could be on a new episode of the Real Housewives. Another option could be to ignore it and become like that main character in the movie Clueless. That's not going to help anything because when we ignore obstacles, when we ignore issues, they grow and get bigger.
Greeting the Obstacle
When you ask that question, you shift the focus from the obstacle itself to looking at remaining in the flow of the moment. It's not really about the issue, the challenge, the obstacle that shows up. It's about the lesson to be learned and the muscles to be developed and flexed in the moment.
You have a choice though as to how you greet the obstacle.
When it shows up at your door, you greet it by strengthening the quality that it's asking you to develop. When you strengthen that quality, it helps you to go forth in a way that's more empowering and allows you to step into your personal power which you need as your person in the world making things happen, having an the impact on the world, in people's lives, businesses, and careers.
Obstacles are a very normal part of the journey. It's something that we all encounter at one time or another. The next time you face an obstacle, remember to ask yourself that question: What quality do I need to develop to show up as my best in this situation?
Trust the answer you get, and then go forth and develop that quality.
About the Author: Michele Thompson Rosario, CEO of Bright Effects, helping entrepreneurs get clients, get traffic, and get results.