Take Action in the Face of An Obstacle

April 21, 2020

Taking actionIn our last blog post, we looked at obstacles, which is a theme this month leading up to Elevate 09, and specifically, our perception of obstacles. Your perception of the obstacles helps to frame the way you view it, whether as something insurmountable and in a negative way, or in a more positive, optimistic manner in which you are confident you will use the obstacle to your advantage in some way and overcome it. In other words, we saw that perception truly is everything when it comes to facing obstacles.

But perception alone is not enough. Action is needed to take on obstacles and respond to them. After you perceive the obstacle in the right manner, planning your approach to respond and then taking action becomes the focal point. This requires diligence but also creativity and flexibility. They action also requires an incredible amount of discipline and commitment to be effective. It most likely will not be easy to overcome many obstacles and may take time. Therefore, persistence is important to stay with it and push through.

It’s here many more will fall short. Many will not be able to get the perception piece right and yet more of those who are able to get the perception and mindset right on viewing the obstacle, will fall short when acting on it when the going gets tough. Those who do not have the persistence and tenacity to see it through many get washed out. A great example of this level of persistence in the face of obstacles is Thomas Edison on multiple occasions in his career. He went through over 6,000 types of filaments to find the right one (bamboo) for the incandescent light bulb. 6,000. It would have been far easier for him to quit at say, 92 or 146, or 3,478, but he stayed with it and was persistent to see it though.

How can we power through action with such discipline? A big part is process. Process rigor build discipline and that can push you through difficult times or setbacks to keep action going and moving forward. Building a process and trusting it helps entrain habits and discipline in you that will help maintain forward momentum in the face of obstacles. The inertia of this forward momentum is hard to stop once it is going. Do you have process in your life and the rigor of discipline to keep you moving forward?

Process and discipline can also help you focus on obstacles more clearly. If you perception fo the obstacles is dialed in correctly, and you aren’t stuck in a negative mindset, you can see obstacles for what they are and even find opportunities in them as well as weaknesses. What may have looked like an impenetrable or unclimbable brick wall at first glance can be studied closely and calmly to see the mortar did not set well and a mild force can collapse the entire wall. Or, simple inspection can find the wall is only so wide and you can walk around it. Not finding these “opportunities” may have caused you to just retreat in the face of a large wall. See it to perceive it, process it, and take action to overcome it.

Obstacles are there to be overcome and we should perceive them as such and view them as opportunities, problems to be solved. Once dialing in the perception, our ability to plan and take controlled action against them is needed. Are you taking action against the obstacles and problems you are encountering?

In our next piece, we will look at how our will comes into play with obstacles.


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