Hi, friends! It’s Elizabeth here, and I am so excited to share Episode 645 of Primal Potential with you today! Primal Potential is a podcast all about you — your ability to change is not defined by yesterday and doesn’t need to wait until tomorrow. Your transformation is now, no matter what stage you find yourself in life!
Let’s talk about struggle. Super fun topic, right? Maybe not, but it’s so important to talk about it because we all deal with it from time to time. Every single one of us has dealt with struggle. You all know that I used to really struggle with my weight. I was eating way too much food and not exercising nearly enough, and I struggled with that for a long time!
But weight loss hasn’t been the only struggle in my life. Every day I struggle to make the best decisions for my business! You guys know that I am totally committed to serving my clients to the best of my ability, but something I struggle to know just how to do that.
What do you struggle with? Maybe you struggle with weight loss or nutrition. Maybe you struggle with getting your business off the ground. Maybe you struggle with a romantic relationship, with your finances, or just with your mindset.
Whatever you’re struggling with, I know how discouraged you can feel. I talk to my clients about this all the time! But here’s the thing: I don’t think we should have any shame about this idea of struggle. It’s part of the human experience, and there is no reason to feel ashamed about it. In fact, I think struggle is actually a good thing. Struggling gives you an opportunity to grow and improve your life, and that is powerful.
So with that, I want to share with you seven great reminders for when you’re struggling. I hope they help you overcome your struggles and transform your life!
#1: Reinforce Why the Struggle is Worth It
My first reminder is this: There are dozens, if not hundreds of reasons not to do the work, but there are also plenty of reasons to do it. Focus on the reasons why you should do the work and overcome the struggle.
Often, when we’re struggling, we tend to focus on all the reasons we can’t do it — whatever “it” is. Have you experienced this? It’s really not difficult to convince yourself not to do the hard work necessary to accomplish whatever goal you’re striving toward! But there are also plenty of reasons to continue striving.
I know that many of you are entrepreneurs like me, so let’s take the example of starting a business. There are a ton of reasons not to start a business. It’s not easy. You’ll probably work long hours in the beginning. Figuring out how to finance it can be overwhelming. Those are all struggles you’re going to face.
But there are plenty of reasons to dig in, do the hard work, and get your business off the ground. Starting a business will allow you to pursue your passion, serve your community, and live the life you’ve dreamed of. Those are pretty good reasons to do the work!
So which story are you going to tell yourself? Are you going to continue to focus on the problems? Or are you going to reinforce the reasons why you wanted to achieve your goal and fight through the struggle anyway?
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Don’t be pushed by your problems. Be led by your dreams.” Don’t let your problems push you down. Let your dreams lead you forward.
#2: You Are Not Stuck
The second reminder I want to share today is this: You are not stuck. You may have stopped, but you are not stuck.
No matter what you’re doing, what you’ve tried or haven’t tried, or what has worked or hasn’t worked, you are not stuck. And you’re not stuck because you have options. You can always pivot your actions and try something different.
This is so true when you’re on a weight loss journey. Maybe you know you need to start an exercise routine, and you decide to start running. That’s great! But maybe after you go out and run those first few times, you discover you just hate running.
I know how easy it can be when you’re in that situation to feel stuck and hopeless. But you have plenty of options — and that’s good news! Just because you don’t love running doesn’t mean you can’t find a way to exercise and get fit. You might need to change the time of day that you run. Or, perhaps you need to switch to another type of exercise — maybe you’d prefer swimming or dancing or cycling! Whatever the issue is, you have options.
You always have a choice. You can sit on the sidelines and feel sorry for yourself, but that attitude isn’t going to get you anywhere. Instead, you can remember that you’re never really stuck, look at all your options, and simply pivot your actions to keep striving toward your goals.
#3: Growth and Achievement Feel Way Better Than Excuses and Exceptions
This one can be tricky, but it’s true. The third reminder is that growth and achievement really do feel better than excuses and exceptions.
You guys know I say all the time that it feels amazing to feel amazing. The problem is that, if you haven’t felt amazing in a while, it can be tough to connect with that. I wrote an entire chapter of my book, Chasing Cupcakes, about this idea that maximum effort actually feels great. When you are really in a routine and working hard and making progress, you feel fantastic, even if the work is challenging.
The reason why this can be tricky is that often the excuses and exceptions we make that prevent us from working our hardest simply feel normal. For example, if you’ve made it a goal to eat more vegetables and less ice cream, choosing not to eat a cup of ice cream every day is not going to feel amazing, at least at first, because it feels different. It takes you out of your comfortable routine, and that is a challenge to overcome. But when you start making consistently healthy choices — and you start to see results — that amazing feeling will come, and you’ll be glad you stayed consistent!
#4: You Can Make This a Memory
This reminder is simple: you are capable of putting this struggle behind you. You can make it a memory.
Struggle is always optional. When you make an excuse or an exception and prolong your difficulty, you opt-in to that struggle. I don’t say that to guilt or shame you! That’s not my style. But I do want you to realize that whatever your struggle is, you can choose to put it behind you.
It all depends on what you do today. Don’t worry about tomorrow or next week or next month yet — just worry about today. The choices you make today will determine whether you’re still struggling in the future, so choose to opt-out. There are plenty of opportunities every day to make choices that will progress you toward your goal and cause your struggle to end. I want to empower you to remember that you are capable of making the choices that will end your struggle and transform your life.
#5: Life is Too Damn Short to Be Miserable
Here’s another simple one, friends: Life is just too damn short to be miserable, and it’s too short to continue this struggle.
You don’t have to be unhappy. You don’t have to continue wrestling with your struggle. And I don’t want you too.
Sometimes I think about the years I lost struggling. I spent so much time choosing to struggle. I created so much struggle for myself and my weight loss journey because of my stubbornness, fear, and negativity. And I will never get that time back. Those years are lost.
Now again, I don’t say that to make you feel sad! Remember — those years may be lost, but today is a completely blank slate. I can make healthy choices today to end my struggling and choose not to struggle and feel miserable.
And so can you. You are free to do something different today.
What are you struggling with? Are you struggling financially? Do you have debt that feels insurmountable? What can you do today to stop struggling with that? Find someone who can give you sound financial advice. Go through your expenses and cut things that aren’t necessarily adding to your happiness. Make a choice to do something today that will end your struggle.
Are you struggling in your relationship with your spouse or partner? What can you do today to end that struggle? Do you need to commit to having a difficult conversation? Do you need to take some time to reconnect that person? Choose to do something today to help you end your misery, stop struggling, and transform your life.
Life is just too short, guys. Don’t choose to continue struggling. Don’t let yourself be miserable! Choose to take the necessary steps to end your struggle and thrive.
#6: Don’t Focus On What You Know To Do
Here’s my sixth reminder: Any time in your life when you’re struggling in any area of your life, you don’t have to focus on what you know to do.
Let me explain: So often we create big plans, but we don’t execute them. More often than not, we do actually know what to do. But how often do we talk ourselves out of actually executing our plans? I can tell you that I have probably logged hundreds of hours creating plans I didn’t follow and setting goals I didn’t reach because I made excuses or exceptions.
Instead of focusing on the plan and spending hours deciding on what you already know you need to do, shift your focus onto overcoming whatever gets in the way every day. You know what needs to be done. You know what steps you need to take. The problem — and the reason you continue struggling — is that you talk yourself out of doing the work.
You guys know that I love journaling, and I think it’s a fantastic idea to write out a set of objectives for your day in your journal every morning. I do it myself! But once I’ve established my objectives for the day, there is a second step that I think is very important. I ask myself, “What could get in the way of these objectives?” and “What can I do about those things?”
Here’s an example: I know that to continue pursuing my goal of taking care of my body, I need to have a healthy and nutritious dinner. But I know that by mid-afternoon, I’m going to want just to order a pizza. So what can I do about that? Well, I can talk to my boyfriend ahead of time and agree with him about what we’re having for dinner. If we have an established plan, I’m much less likely to text him and say, “Hey, just pick up a pizza for dinner,” right?
Think about your objectives — it’s always a good idea to plan and establish what you want to do! But don’t stop there. Anticipate what obstacles might pop up to prevent you from executing your plans. Take it a day at a time; simple focus on overcoming what could get in your way today. It can be incredibly powerful to anticipate what could go wrong and create plans to keep yourself on track despite any obstacles.
#7: Ask For Help
My final reminder for when you are struggling is this: Please ask for help.
If you are struggling in any area of your life, please reach out for help. You could ask your spouse or partner, a friend, a coworker, or a coach. It doesn’t matter — just find someone who can help you and reach out to them.
Help from other people has been one of the primary things that have accelerated and sustained the growth I’ve made in the last few years. Before I started Primal Potential — when my business was just a dream — I constantly asked for help. I asked questions like, “What should I be doing?” and “ What would it take for me to stand out?” I sought advice from people I trusted so I could make the wisest decisions for my business.
I also want to encourage you to remember that asking for help is not weakness. It’s strength. It takes courage to ask for help when you need it.
I’ll use another example from my life. When I first started working out regularly, I had a trainer. In fact, I worked with a trainer consistently for the first three or four years. That wasn’t weakness; that was strength. I acknowledged that I wasn’t going to figure out how to exercise and get my body fit and healthy on my own, so I got help. It wasn’t easy, but I did it, and now I am so thankful I did.
After all, asking for help is a fast tracker. You can struggle on your own for a while, or you can ask for help and get out of your struggle much faster. There are always people who have experience and advice about whatever you’re struggling with — why wouldn’t you want to learn from them? It’s not shameful. It’s not weakness. It’s real strength to reach out and get help when you need it, and it will help you stop struggling and start thriving much faster.
You Can Stop Struggling Today
I hope you all feel empowered and encouraged by these reminders today, friends. You can decide to stop struggling. You can choose to get help, overcome your obstacles, and transform your life — no matter what you’re struggling with.
Whether you struggle with weight, finances, relationships, or even just your mindset, your struggle does not have to continue. You have the power to stop being miserable. You have the ability to stop struggling.
And I would love to help you with this more personally! If you’d like some extra support, a little more coaching, and accountability, I want you to get on the waitlist for our next 12 Weeks of Transformation! In this program, I work with people in a much more personal and structured way to create change. We tackle our excuses head-on and find the core values that will motivate you to take action. If you’re not sure what to do next, I encourage you to check out 12 Weeks to Transformation and get on that waitlist!Learn More!
I’d also love to connect with you via text! I send out text messages with my daily mindset upgrades and daily encouragement. I know they will encourage you and empower you on your journey!
Thanks, everyone! I’m so glad you chose to join me today. Now stop struggling and start living the life you’ve always dreamed of.
7 Reminders For Times of Struggling
- Yes, there will always be reasons why you don’t want to do the work or it feels hard. There are also reasons why you do want to do the work. You choose which you give the most energy to.
- You are not stuck. You might have stopped, but that’s different. There are tons of options available to you.
- Growth and achievement feel way better than frustration and struggle. Keep pushing.
- You can make this a memory.
- Life is too short to be miserable.
- Focus on overcoming what gets in the way each day.
- You can ask for help.