Are You Your Own Worst Enemy?

By Nechama Leitner Let's Talk Business 4 min read

If you’re going through a tough spot, know this:

Have you ever been on the verge of giving up? Have you ever hit a wall, looked in the mirror and thought, “I just can’t do this”? Have you ever experienced the pain of self-doubt, of believing with every fiber of your being that you simply don’t have what it takes to succeed?

It is a dark place to be. There is no doubt about that. And it’s in these moments where we can be our own worst enemy—where we can lose the will to keep going. And that would be a big mistake.

A few months ago, someone came to me asking me for advice. His business was going through hard times, and he was on the verge of giving up. We talked. I asked him some questions and offered some words of encouragement. A few months later, he has made a tremendous turnaround, and his company is now thriving again. It made me think about the incredible resilience of the human spirit. How sometimes all we need is that little extra push. How having that one person who believes in us can make all the difference.

If you’re going through a tough spot, know this. There is a light at the end of this very dark tunnel. Because in adversity, we grow. In struggle, we find strengths we never knew we had. In dusting ourselves off from rejection and disappointment, we discover the persistence, perseverance, and grit that had been bottled up within us. In hitting rock bottom, we realize there is only one way out—up.

Over the years I have learned that there are two ways to deal with adversity. You can run from it, hide from it, be sad and ashamed. Or you can look it in the eye, accept it, even embrace it, and soak in the lessons that it has to teach. Here are a few Ptex Practical Pointers that have helped me when dealing with rough spots—and I hope they help you, too.

1. You’re much more capable than you think.

There are times when failure and struggle is an indication that you need to change direction. But there are also many times when it means you need to push through, to challenge yourself just a little bit more, to move past the stumbling block and just keep going. Stretching yourself beyond your comfort zone is what will ultimately help you grow and thrive and accomplish more than you ever thought possible.

2. You’re not a failure just because you failed.

We can be our harshest critics. Do not judge yourself based on your failures. Separate yourself—the person YOU are—from your actions and mistakes. This ability to love and accept yourself even with your failings is extremely important if you want to overcome obstacles and be successful in life.

3. Take it as a learning experience.

What is this failure or hardship trying to teach you? What lessons are hidden here? What gems of wisdom can you find in it that will make you stronger and better tomorrow? How can this experience help you change? Answering these questions will give you the tools you need to move forward, rather than dwelling on the past.

4. Reconnect with your “why.”

Everyone has a reason for why they what they do. A greater meaning that’s much deeper than profits. We all have a purpose in this world that keeps us going. What’s yours? “Our greatest fear in life,” said Francis Chan,” should not be failure, but succeeding at things that don’t really matter in life.”

You will inevitably make mistakes. You will fail. But my hope for you is that you take those struggles and failures, stand up, brush yourself off, and turn them into powerful catalysts for profound growth.

The only question left is, the next time you’re on the verge of giving up, will you be your own worst enemy—or your own best friend?

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