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The One Unexpected Thing You Need to Go From Good to Great

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pressure

Do you ever get the unsettling feeling that you’re not messing up at work, but not exactly setting the world on fire either? Your focus wavers. You struggle to get motivated. You even wonder why you’re doing what you’re doing. The hunger, passion, and joy that you started out with are nowhere to be found.

Left unchecked, you can lose sight of your goals and aspirations — and your boss can just as easily lose sight of you. Nobody wins. The road to success is a long one. Sometimes we get stuck in second gear; if you drive a car, you know that’s not the best way to be moving.

This happens when we get too comfortable at work. Remember day one on the job? We were eager to prove ourselves, hungry for opportunities, and soaking up everything we could learn. Before long, we settled in nicely, usually with some small wins in the bag.

We start to think, “I got this. This isn’t so hard after all.” We relax and take our foot off the pedal. This is when complacency sets in. To reach the next level of success, you may have to, ironically enough, set yourself up to fail.

“There are plenty of obstacles in your path. Don’t allow yourself to become one of them.” - Ralph Marston

Lighting a fire under you

Many people unwittingly self-sabotage their success. Procrastination, self-doubt, and people-pleasing are some of the main accomplices. This is different. Intentionally putting yourself in a position where you’re likely to fail can have a positive effect on your focus and motivation.

It’s like lighting a fire under your butt. It’s not for the faint of heart, or mind. The higher likelihood of failure puts pressure on our performance. We feel the heat, we smell burnt behinds, and our natural instinct to get our butt moving kicks in.

There’s good science behind this. In a landmark study dating back as far as 1908, psychologists Robert Yerkes and John Dodson developed the inverted U-shaped model. It shows that when pressure increases in the early stages, individual performance doesn’t drop but actually improves.

Gordon Ramsay even believes that pressure is necessary if you want to be successful: “As a soccer player, I wanted an FA Cup winner’s medal. As an actor you want an Oscar. As a chef it’s three-Michelin’s stars, there’s no greater than that. So pushing yourself to the extreme creates a lot of pressure and a lot of excitement, and more importantly, it shows on the plate.

Rising above it all

Pressure from likely failure can give rise to improved performance. For example, many professional creatives admit they do their best work when they are dangerously close to the deadline. When the possibility of missing the deadline becomes very real, they are able to crank up their motivation and focus. Their improved productivity led to better performance.

You may be wondering, what if I can’t cope with the pressure? Psychologists have shown that it is our mental approach to pressure that determines how well we cope with it.

When we take on a positive mental approach, we see pressure as a challenge. Our mind and body responds in a way to improve our performance; staying in control of our thoughts and emotions, sharpening our focus, and making better decisions.

But if we perceive pressure negatively, it becomes a threat that can paralyze our thoughts and abilities. Our confidence dips and our performance drops. How we choose to perceive pressure can decide if we rise above it, or crumble under it.

“Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny.” – C.S. Lewis

How can you do the same?

If you’re up for a challenge to push yourself closer toward your personal greatness, here’s how you can kick things up notch:

  • Acknowledge it if you’re neither bad nor great at what you do.
  • Create or take on a difficult challenge that will increase the pressure to perform/produce.
  • Adopt a positive mindset to the challenge.
  • Be aware of the pressure, but focus on meeting the challenge.
  • Take stock of what you’re learning from the experience.

Using potential failure as a motivational tool isn’t for everyone. For some, it can be a powerful shot in the arm to jolt themselves out of inertia and passivity. The confidence gained from succeeding (or failing) against the odds can bring more success in the future.

How do you respond to pressure and how does it work for you? Leave your thoughts below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

Victor Ng is an executive coach and entrepreneur who helps those with ambition overcome adversity to reach their goals. Download his free self-coaching worksheet “Adversity To Advantage” to reframe challenges and refocus on your success. Victor has 18 years of corporate experience in advertising and marketing communication. He is one of the youngest in his industry to reach the regional C-suite, and is credited with over 100 industry awards, including Cannes and Clios.

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Life

Failing is More Important Than Succeeding

Failure is an integral part of life as life is incomplete without failures.

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People often consider failure a stigma.  Society often doesn’t respect the people who failed and avoids and criticizes their actions. Failure is an integral part of life as life is incomplete without failures. Not to have endeavored is worse than failing in life as at some stage of your life you regret not having tried in your life.  (more…)

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Life

5 Indicators of Unresolved Attachment Trauma

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Emotional Attachment Trauma

Trauma caused during specific stages of a child’s development, known as attachment trauma, can have lasting effects on a person’s sense of safety, security, predictability, and trust. This type of trauma is often the result of abuse, neglect, or inconsistent care from a primary caregiver.

Individuals who have not fully processed attachment trauma may display similar patterns of behavior and physical or psychological symptoms that negatively impact their adult lives, including the choices they make in relationships and business.

Unfortunately, many people may not even be aware that they are struggling with trauma. Research estimates that 6% of the population will experience PTSD in their lifetime, with a majority of males and females having experienced significant trauma.

Unresolved attachment trauma can significantly impair the overall quality of a person’s life, including their ability to form healthy relationships and make positive choices for themselves. One well-known effect of unhealed attachment trauma is the compulsion to repeat past wounds by unconsciously selecting romantic partners who trigger their developmental trauma.

However, there are other less recognized but equally detrimental signs of unprocessed developmental trauma.

 

Five possible indications of unresolved attachment trauma are:

 

1.  Unconscious Sabotage

Self-sabotage is a common pattern among individuals with unprocessed attachment trauma. This cycle often begins with hurting others, which is then followed by hurting oneself. It is also common for those with attachment trauma to have heightened emotional sensitivity, which can trigger this cycle.

This pattern can manifest in lashing out, shutting down, or impulsive behavior that leads to feelings of guilt, shame, and self-loathing.

Many people with attachment trauma are not aware of their wounds and operate on survival mode, unconsciously testing or challenging the emotional investment of those around them, and pushing them away out of self-preservation and fear of abandonment.

This can lead to a pattern of making poor choices for themselves based on impulsivity.

 

2. Persistent Pain

 
Chronic pain is a common symptom that can stem from early trauma. Studies have shown a connection between physical conditions such as fibromyalgia, headaches, gastrointestinal issues, insomnia, muscle aches, back pain, chest pain, and chronic fatigue with the aftermath of chronic developmental trauma, particularly physical abuse.
 
Research has found that individuals with insecure attachment styles, such as anxious, avoidant, or disorganized, have a higher incidence of somatic symptoms and a history of physical and emotional abuse in childhood compared to those with a secure attachment style.
 
 

3. Behaviors That Block Out Trauma

 
Trauma blocking practises are used to avoid the pain and memories connected with traumatic events.
 
Emotional numbing, avoidance, and escape via briefly pleasurable activities that distract from terrible memories or suffering are common examples. Unfortunately, this escape habit stops people from successfully processing and recovering from their trauma.
 
Furthermore, when the pain resurfaces, more and more diversions are necessary to continue ignoring it. This can be seen in compulsive behaviours such as drug or alcohol addiction, emotional eating, numbing oneself through relationships, workaholism, excessive or dangerous exercise routines, compulsive internet or technology use, or any other compulsive behaviour used to distract yoursef from intrusive thoughts and emotions.
 
These actions have the potential to prolong a cycle of avoidance and repression, preventing persons from healing and progressing.
 

4. A strong need for control

 
It’s understandable that some people may struggle with control issues in their adult lives, especially if they felt helpless or vulnerable during their childhood.
 
This can happen if someone had an overbearing caregiver who didn’t let them make their own choices, expected too much from them, or didn’t take care of them properly. As adults, they might try to control everything in their life to feel more in control and less anxious or scared. This might be because they didn’t feel like they had control over their life when they were a child.
 
It’s important to remember that everyone’s experiences are different and it’s okay to seek help if you’re struggling with control issues.
 
 

5. Psychological Symptoms That Are Not Explained

 
Individuals with a history of developmental trauma may experience a range of psychological symptoms, including obsessive-compulsive behavior, intense mood swings, irritability, anger, depression, emotional numbing, or severe anxiety.
 
These symptoms can vary in intensity and may occur intermittently throughout the day. People with this type of trauma may attempt to “distract” themselves from these symptoms by denying or rationalizing them, or may resort to substance abuse or behavioral addictions as coping mechanisms. This can be a maladaptive way of trying to numb their symptoms.
 
 

What to do next if you’re suffering from emotional attachment trauma?

 
Everyone’s experience of healing from trauma is unique. It’s important to be aware of whether you have experienced childhood developmental trauma and how it may be affecting your relationships as an adult. Sometimes, the effects of trauma can be overwhelming and we may try to push them away or avoid them.
 
If you notice that you’re engaging in these behaviors, it’s important to seek help from a trauma therapist who can support you on your healing journey. Remember, you’re not alone and it’s never too late to start healing.
 

There are several ways that people can work to overcome emotional attachment trauma:

  1. Therapy: One of the most effective ways to overcome emotional attachment trauma is through therapy. A therapist can help you process your experiences, understand the impact of your trauma on your life, and develop coping strategies to manage symptoms.
  2. Support groups: Joining a support group of people who have had similar experiences can be a great way to find validation, empathy, and a sense of community.
  3. Mindfulness practices: Mindfulness practices such as meditation, pilates, prayer time with God or journaling can help you become more aware of your thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations, and develop a sense of spiritual connection and self-regulation.
  4. Trauma-focused cognitive-behavioral therapy (TF-CBT): This is a type of therapy that is specifically designed to help individuals process and recover from traumatic events.
  5. Building a safety net: Building a support system of people you trust, who are there for you when you need them, can help you feel more secure and safe in your life.

It’s important to remember that healing from emotional attachment trauma is a process and it may take time. It’s also important to find a therapist who is experienced in treating trauma, who you feel comfortable talking with, and who can help you develop a personalized treatment plan.

 
 
If you desire to work with me on healing your wounds and unlocking the aspects of you that were never realized so you can achieve more success in your life then head over to awebliss.com and join my weekly LIVE online mentorship calls.
 
 
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Life

3 Simple Steps to Cultivate Courage and Create a Life of Meaning

we cultivate meaning in our lives when we pursue our calling

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Our deepest human desire is to cultivate meaning in our lives. Our deepest human need is to survive. (more…)

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Life

Grit: The Key to Your Ultimate Greatness

Grit is an overlooked aspect of success, but it plays a critical role.

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A grit mindset is an essential key to your greatness. It’s what separates those who achieve their goals from those who give up and never reach their potential. It’s also the difference between success and failure, happiness and misery. If you want to be great and achieve your dreams, then you need grit. Luckily, it’s something that can be learned. Please keep reading to learn more about grit and discover four ways to develop it. (more…)

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