Every new project (or job, hobby, company, and relationship) starts out fun. Then it gets really hard, and then not much fun at all. You might be in a dip—a temporary setback that will get better if you keep pushing. But maybe it’s really a cul-de-sac—a total dead end. What really sets superstars apart is the ability to tell the two apart.
If something is worth doing there will be a dip. You need to learn how to navigate it successfully in order to come out on the other side.
I’ve had many examples of the dip and cul-de-sac throughout my life, such as;
- Frustration in dancing when I didn’t meet my goals. I felt stuck in the face of the competitive results my partner and I were achieving.
- My business was not making the money I was hoping for. It was costing me time, energy and money in a way that felt overwhelming.
- A relationship I was in was not moving in the direction I would have liked. I felt like we were two people with completely different wants and needs.
- My creative juices were not flowing. Every time I tried to think about a new project or idea, my thoughts got lost in the abyss, a void of zero inspiration.
I could go on, but I think you get the idea.
In the last two years, I’ve been experiencing a major life transition. While I’ve been manoeuvring the changes in many areas of my life, it can feel as though I’m grasping or holding onto ideologies that might no longer be serving me. Truthfully, there have been days where everything feels too daunting – basically I’ve been in a Dip wondering if it’s a cul-de-sac.
And after listening to this audio book, I realized I’m definitely in a dip, not a dead end. I felt the dip coming awhile ago and played average hoping it would go away by itself instead of doing what I have done in the past, roll up my sleeves, get creative and change my approach.
Once I realized I was in a dip, I was not instantly relieved. I thought to myself, “This growth thing is hard.” Change is hard. The ability to step outside of myself and into bird’s eye view to see what needs to be adjusted requires discernment and discipline.
Then I was reminded of the book Getting the Love You Want by Harville Handrix. In the book, he mentions there are four ways that people deal with conflict (a.k.a. the dip) – which is inevitable in a relationship.
1- Ignore it. You know it’s there but apt to pretending it’s not there.
2- Get angry. This is fuelled by blaming others for your situation.
3- Run away. It’s too difficult to deal with so you prefer to leave.
4- Growth. You recognize that in order to become the best version of yourself, you’ll need to lean into the pain and deal with things from a place of compassion.
I thought to myself, “What am I choosing?”
After feeling both motivated to lean into the dip and tired with knowing the work ahead, I was reminded that to get to my best life, I have to move past the dip, to a place of glory.
I choose growth.
I recommend anyone who feels stuck to read this short book. It may give you the perspective you need to lean into your own dip.
Be brave friends,