Award winning Chrissy B produces and hosts the UK’s ONLY TV show dedicated to mental health and wellbeing. She is also the founder of the MHDChallenge (Mental Health Dance Challenge) the world’s 1st ever dance encouraging people to fight back against depressionWebsites: www.chrissybshow.tv & www.mylifeafterdepression.com
I really want to do well in life but I don’t seem to be able to stick to things. I have lots of good ideas but I always feel the need to run them by someone first to get approval and then I get discouraged and don’t bother. I’m always doubting myself or lack the energy or drive to move forward. I feel like such a failure sometimes. What’s wrong with me?
Dear Amanda,There’s nothing wrong with you – let’s get that clear straight away. You just need to develop resolve and perseverance. It’s not because you’re not capable, it’s not about qualifications, it’s not because of where you’re from or how you look. You can have everything seemingly going against you but if you have a determination inside of you, you will succeed. The great thing is that you say that you really want to do well in life and that’s a very good starting point. So how can you develop this resolve?
- Don’t always go by what you feel
Everyone feels lazy and like not doing anything at times. Let’s face it if we all listened to how we felt, most of us would wake up late and not do very much. But we don’t listen to how we feel, we get up anyway, take a shower and get ready to face the day. This same principle needs to be taken further. What things haven’t you done because you haven’t felt like it? What unfinished projects are there because you haven’t felt like doing them? Let’s take exercise for example. I never feel like going to the gym, but I push myself anyway and I find that I never regret going – but I would regret it if I didn’t go. Just because you feel something, doesn’t mean you should listen to that.
- Fight back against the voices!
There’s a saying that I love that says, “Life begins at the edge of your comfort zone” and it’s so true. If you choose to play it safe all the time, you’re not likely to get very far. So when those voices in your head come to tell you that it’s a stupid idea, that you don’t have what it takes, that you’ll fail if you try, etc. tell them to shut up and just do what you have to do. Take a risk.
- Don’t wait for fear to disappear
…because it probably won’t. If I waited, I might have never started my own TV show. When I was approached with the idea, although I felt honoured and saw it as a fantastic opportunity, I have to admit, a wave of fear also came over me. Yes, those voices that I mentioned in the previous point were quick to attack my mind. But I got rid of them immediately. So don’t wait to feel confident enough to do something. Confidence comes with action. Do it despite the fear and that’s when you will make progress. Often, taking action gets rid of that
- Create a vision board
I have one of these at home – a large thick piece of paper where I have stuck photos of representations of what I want to achieve. This keeps my mind focused so when things get tough, it reminds me of my goals. It takes my mind off the difficulties and gets me back on track.
- Be stubborn
…in a good way. Whenever you want to achieve something in life, especially if you are aiming to do something no-one else has done, expect resistance. You mentioned that you have lots of good ideas, so identify what is discouraging you. Is it the fear that I mentioned above? Is it other people? I would be selective about the people you speak to about your ideas. Do you really need to speak to someone? Be careful. You may have the most well-intentioned people (such as family members and friends) who in a bid to look after you and not see you get hurt or fail, may tell you it’s not a good idea. I believe it’s better to try and “fail” than never to take a risk. And actually, we learn from our experiences, good or bad, so it’s never a waste.
- Start the day right
Before checking social media or anything else that’s distracting, start your day by having some quiet time and thinking about what you want to achieve that day. If we’re simply on autopilot, our day might not be very productive. I love to pray in the morning because it helps me to see things more clearly.
- Health is a priority
Please don’t underestimate the impact that your health has on your mood and energy. If you exercise regularly, eat healthily, drink water, get enough sleep, you will start to see the difference immediately. You will be able to think more clearly, get more done, and be far more focused and deal with that lack of energy you mentioned. It’s very difficult to do well in life if our health is neglected. Start with small changes so you don’t feel overwhelmed. For example, drink a glass of water when you wake up and before every meal, start taking a short walk every day, eat more fruit and vegetables… You’ll see that soon enough, you will start to enjoy the effects and want to add more healthy habits to your list.
Remember, success starts inside of you. Be excited about your brilliant future because it’s there for the taking.