Chutes and Ladders
You have probably heard of the game chutes and ladders or in some cases its called snakes and ladders. It is a game where you start at square 1 and work your way up the board to the 100th square. But it’s not that easy the board is riddled with chutes that cause you to slide down the board resetting most of your progress. However, there are ladders as well which help you advance rather quickly.
Wouldn’t it be nice if your life was like chutes and ladders? You could play the game and know your ultimate success is just 100 paces away. Well, guess what? The game chutes and ladders is very close to how we all go through life. Sometimes we are on top of our game advancing hitting ladders and almost suddenly we hit a slide.
It can be devastating when you hit a slide, taking the wind out of your sails. I mean your doing flawless and then all the sudden you take a spin and get the exact number to hit a slide. Right on cue enters your ego with all the deflating and defeating self-talk.
Shut Up and Celebrate
First off tell your ego to shut the hell up. Second, you need to realize that hitting a slide in your life version of chutes and ladders should be celebrated.
There are lessons in your fall from grace just as much as there are lessons in your climb to the top. But if you choose to be a victim, blame everything on others, get angry and stay angry, etc. You will never be able to see the value in where you were, how you got there, and what caused the setback.
When I was creating my coaching products that are designed to help people realize their worth, become mentally strong, and become leaders. Everything was flowing, I got all the time I needed to create, think, implement, and connect with my people. Receiving feedback, a lot of interest, I even had amazing interaction with people.
I thought to myself, “this has already changed a small number of peoples lives but now it will be limitless.” As I was climbing this ladder getting right next to the 100th block signaling my success. I hit a ladder. This ladder took the wind right out of my sails. I made no sales, everyone that was extremely interested never showed up. It was devastating.
All Was Not Lost
However, I knew all was not lost I had hit slides before in the SEAL teams, my life before the SEAL teams, in college, and obviously in my current life. Slides and ladders never really go away, you name a section of my life I can share my slide story.
But with any slide there are lessons and I had to remember there are 4 things I integrate immediately. These 4 things get me out of the funk, and keep me advancing toward the next ladder.
Meditate. I should just leave it there as a statement more than an explanation.
Meditation is a powerful tool that can be utilized anytime, anyplace, and in any situation. By meditating you are slowing your mind down, reconnecting with your higher self and opening yourself up to the messages you need to receive.
You will feel calm after, in some cases gain a new perspective and be able to start your journey with positivity.
I fully realized the power of meditation 2 years after I got out of the military. I hit rock bottom, it was a scary time in my life. Everything seemed dark and hopeless, I couldn’t see a future for myself. I had no friends around me, and I felt like I was on my own.
But my wife reminded me to meditate so I reluctantly decided to start meditating. What happened almost immediately is the negative edge I was holding onto tightly started to fade. I could see my future I felt inspired to find the lessons, learn from them and started to find more ladders.
Meditation is a good place to start when you have had a bad day, a setback, or just to start your day. You are telling the universe you are ready and willing to take the time to learn and walk your true path.
Have you ever heard the phrase perception is reality? Well, it is absolutely true because whatever you choose to perceive is exactly what your mind will allow and believe.
Your mind is a powerful piece of equipment. Remember back to a time when you were absolutely negative. Did anything good come from it, were you energized or exhausted? Did your face turn from vibrant to a scrunched up pissed off version of yourself?
Right when your outlook on the situation changes to something positive, your mind opens up. You feel lighter, happier, but most importantly you are open to learning and receiving the messages.
This is the ultimate value of your perception. Just by changing your mind and seeing things as a glass half full instead of empty. You are now in a position to learn, and celebrate your slide down from grace. Think about it when you were a kid and let’s be honest as an adult going down a slide is fun stuff.
You might as well enjoy while you pluck the pearls on the way down, taking in information, and applying it forward. By doing this you are ready to go when your feet hit the ground you can move positively forward.
2. You’re in control
You are period. Nothing about you is out of control unless you allow yourself to get that way. When you were a kid and got ice cream you made sure you knew where that was at all times. If you were under threat of someone sabotaging your ice cream you would make sure to take control of the situation.
Living your life today is no different than when you had an ice cream cone. You can choose to allow people or even yourself to sabotage your experience. Those friends you have that seem to come around when you fail, letting you know all the reason why it would have never worked. Or the boyfriend or girlfriend that say you shouldn’t have wasted your time.
Now you may think to yourself well they are just trying to empathize. First of all that is not empathizing. Second, and more important is you are defending these people. Why? Because they have been your friends forever, or you have been together for years, you love each other?
Now, look at it from this perspective.
You have one of these people say, wow that must have been hard. What do you think happened? Where do you want to go from here? Can I help you in any way? Dang, I really felt like it was going to work this time, but I know you are a fighter and will get it done.
The people using something similar are empathizing. They want to make you feel comfortable like anything is possible because it is. The best part is you do not have to justify or defend anyone.
Your mind and your environment are in your control. These people in the second example exist, take control and find them. But you first have to take control of your mind and really believe they are out there waiting for you. Because they are.
1. Stay Positive
This one seems easy, and almost like a cliche at this point. However, it is what gets the wheels moving in the right direction.
Just as there is a fork in the road there are two paths you can take. The positive road and the negative road. The positive road overall will give you the ability to hit the ground running when you get off the slide. It will also cause you to keep an open mind, learn, experience, and have the strength to design your life the way you want.
Negativity will keep you at the bottom of the slide looking around for quick fixes, things that don’t align with who you are. You will experience more bad times then good times in the negative space. You will also attract people that thrive off misery, and want to keep you small. Because comfortably miserable is where negativity thrives.
Being positive will push you to be the person you were always meant to be. You will find the right people who nudge you along and inspire you to be better. Learn constantly and expand infinitely.
Wrapping it Up
Take these 4 steps seriously, no chutes or ladders game will keep you down again. These 4 steps have pulled me from the trenches more than once. Use them in any order you choose. Most importantly stay positive and realize you are the one steering the ship.
The people you surround yourself with should not influence you away from what you truly want to do. They should offer positive advice and inspiration to go after your dreams. Your mental strength is dependent on your belief in yourself, which will fuel your environment, which will fuel your future.
Take action today by remembering a time in your life when you were struggling or even a situation you are struggling with today. Write out the situation your struggling with. After you have written it out analyze where you could have paid a little more attention, where you shouldn’t have zigged when you should have zagged.
Look at it from a positive perspective who is willing to learn.
Your life is yours and yours alone, every one of us has an obligation to realize our own dreams. To believe in ourselves and go after whatever it is we were put here to do. By getting involved in the Mental Strength program you are planting your flag in the ground and saying you are ready. Ready to take action and do what you have always felt you were meant to do.
Don’t hesitate, start today, and live the rest of your life your way the exact way you were meant to.