I experienced hard decisions, like letting go, facing fright and asking myself “Am I doing the right thing?”
I realize we get tested every time we decide to take ourselves to a new level. But when everything seems to be challenging,
if you’re not grounded, you might just want to give up.
Last week I wrote about loving your irritations in my newsletter. I was trying to move past being upset.
However, as much as I try to stay positive, sometimes I am challenged.
I am human.
How do we get past these weeks, hours, moments when we are tested?
For me, I checked into my heart and asked myself courageous questions.
In my silence, my heart spoke, and a story that I heard many years ago came to me.
Two boys dove into a river one day, challenging one another to swim across, a distance of about two miles. They swam with a strong and steady stroke, and the lead swimmer, not looking back, continued swimming on toward the other shore. When he emerged on the bank of the river and had completed his swim, he looked back to see that his friend was nowhere near. He looked more carefully and, behold, there his friend stood, back on the other shore from where they had started. When he met his friend again he said to him, “How was it that you did not follow me across the stream and reach the other shore?” The boy who turned back said, “Oh, after I got about half way out, I looked back and saw how far I had come, and I was afraid I could not make it, so I turned back.” “But,” said the boy who swam across the stream, “Why didn’t you think to across the stream? Why didn’t you think to look forward as I did, for I saw only the shore coming closer and closer to me with each stroke? Why didn’t you see that it was just as hard to turn back to safety as it was to continue swimming to your goal?”
This story is so profound to me. When challenges come along, when you feel fear, when you experience disappointment,
or you are just tired of trying and failing, which way do you swim? Do you swim back to shore or do you swim toward new horizons?
I was swimming in the river this week, and and so conflicted about what to do.
I asked myself, “Which way do I swim? Do I go back to shore where I have been before? Where it feels safe, but I am guaranteed
to get the same results? Or do I swim forward to newer horizons, when something new is possible?
This week I swam to new horizons.
Lead From Within: When challenges arise. Be still and listen. Your heart always speaks.
Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.