How to get out of your own way

What to do when only person in your way is you

If you’re reading this and you already suspect you might be getting in your own way then I applaud you. It certainly took me a while and many years of experience to spot when someone is their own worst enemy.

It takes vision to really be able to step back and look at your problem objectively to identify if your own behaviour is becoming your biggest roadblock to success.

Rarely, do we ask ourselves, am I the problem? Rarely are we truly willing because if the answer is yes, then the solution (and the work) lies with us.

So how do you know if you’re getting in your own way?

Repetition is the biggest clue. If you find that an issue is presenting itself over and over again then it is time to stand back and try to understand why it is happening.

It may not always be related to the same situation for example, someone who feels unworthy might reject opportunities to share knowledge (public speaking), they might never put themselves forward for promotions or feel very uncomfortable sharing their ideas.

Through my consultancy, this is what we look to discover. Whether the person is a CEO at a crossroads, an entrepreneur suffering imposter syndrome, or a mother going back to work, it is important to try to understand this repetitive behaviour before we begin to challenge it.

Once this has been established, we begin to tackle the core reason behind this behaviour and ways to face it. Through experience, we come to the harsh realisation that the only person we have control over in our lives is ourselves.

Sometimes, if you can’t change a situation you have to change yourself. And this can be the hardest part.

Here are my five top tips when it comes to challenging your own behaviour:

Write down your challenges: Writing is a powerful tool. It will help you outline your experiences and get to the bottom of repetitive behaviour that is holding you back.

Speak to someone objective: Talk to people you trust about your issue. It doesn’t have to be a friend or relative it can be an objective colleague or consultant.

Understand that no one is perfect: We set ourselves impossible standards sometimes and rarely give ourselves credit. If you are being courageous, brave and challenging yourself, then you deserve a pat on the back.

Get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable: Everyone gets nervous and everyone messes up but if you keep avoiding the situation and give up you’ll never move forward.

Keep going! – Keep challenging yourself, if you don’t use it, you lose it.