If you are a business owner, sales manager or ultra-endurance cyclist there is a high chance you have been facing a time where things get slow and no success is in sight. Emails stay unanswered, rejections are coming in or the kilometer stand seems not to change. We are working hard but it seems, it is not paying off. A deadly combination of doubts, loss of motivation and lack of confidence are creeping in. “Shall I continue?” “Isn’t this all for nothing?” “I am a failure!”
I have been in this situation so many times on so many levels, at work not seeing an end of the project, in life not knowing if I have chosen the right way of life or in my ultra-endurance cycling events when after 18 hours of riding there is still no finish line in sight.
This is how I get through those times:
1. It is temporary! Usually, those times are temporary if we keep working and don’t stop. Especially in my cycling events it is obvious. Standing still will not get me anywhere. Even though I only see a long, endless horizon, I know there will be an end. Trust in your own progress!
2. Create micro goals. I am used to constant, positive feedback for hard work, but if it does not come because the next goal is too far away, I need to create micro goals. In cycling, I often dissect the super long cycling challenges into smaller segments and I mentally celebrate every time I reach that segment. Instead of focusing only on the end goal, create micro goals that give you that endorphin kick needed to keep going.
3. This is your opportunity! These low moments define us and distinguish those who fail from those who succeed. Everyone can excel in happy times, but it is those bad, slow and dark times where successful owners, managers and cyclists are created. Thus, see these times as an opportunity to excel! I do that in those races when it is rainy, cold and miserable. All the riders are in those conditions but it is my decision if I let myself get affected by it or if I rise to my fullest mental capability and show to myself that nothing can keep myself away from reaching my fullest potential!
When I decided to set my world record cycling as the first female in history the 3300km Vuelta a España, there were many times during the preparation phase that I thought it all didn’t make sense and I would never make it. But I reminded myself that it is ok to have doubts and fears. What is not ok, that these thoughts would affect my motivation, willpower and determination to reach my goal!
If you are in a tough situation, know that it is not forever and that even if your work seems not to go anywhere, don’t get discouraged. These are the times that will create a stronger YOU.
Reach your RAD potential!