We all want to improve. Furthermore, we want improvements to come easily. Of course we do, why not? That would make life a lot more enjoyable, right?
The thing is, improvement is far from an easy thing to find for yourself. Growth often takes questioning your views, your opinion, how you’re living your life. It sometimes takes facing things you fear. Growth can require taking on challenges, overcoming obstacles. Conflict is better than stagnation, and I believe it completely.
But one will find growth in other ways, ways they haven’t yet explored, and this I came to realize when I began to push myself too far. I’m a firm believer in moving outside of one’s own comfort zone and that is reflected in my writing. I constantly encourage people to do stuff they’ve never done before. To go the extra mile. I do my best to do the same, to practice what I say.
But I realized that in giving everything I had to improving on this and that and everything, I was losing myself and moving closer and closer to snapping, to burning out. Anyone that goes through a similar experience knows quite well the feeling of taking one step forward, and then falling two backwards.
I realize now that I was consumed with always moving forward and getting better, getting my way. It didn’t matter at what, what mattered was that I did. I put all my attention to being the best I could be, and in doing that, I began doing something else – forcing my will on life. When I say that, I mean that I was trying to make everything go my way. Needless to say, frustration is inevitable with that mindset.
Being who I am, I feel like I need to perform at all times. I often give myself no time to relax, no time to enjoy, and in doing so, am able to accomplish less, sometimes nothing. I never let myself slow down and stop doing.
Growth is not solely found in doing, doing, doing. Learning to go with the flow, to be a follower sometimes, to listen and take in and be – that’s growth too. This is why I say that growth isn’t linear, it doesn’t follow a line. There are many things we must learn, and they do not all stack up one on top of each other to be taken apart one by one. When you hit a rut, stop, reconsider, and maybe go a new direction. Sometimes we feel our progress, and life is good. Sometimes, we lose sight of where we are and everything feels dark.
Just remember that growth isn’t linear, just as your life is not just a straight line.