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MELD, challenge

Intentional Challenges

Do you lead, or do you react?

We all like to think of ourselves as leaders. Yet, if you are like me, you may find yourself reacting more than you lead.

I realized that I wanted things, such as that amazing relationship or that great job. Yet my unconscious, God, or the universe — or however you describe what we do not control — responds with what I need to fulfill that wish. The problem arises because the solution arrives in a way I did not imagine.

It is as though I ask for directions to that great restaurant, but then I don’t follow the directions from the local fellow because I think I see a shortcut. Well, all the shortcut does is get me lost. I have done that too many times — as Dalia, my partner, will tell you. Some guys may have a problem asking for directions; my problem is following them.

If nature adores a void, we despise one.

I started to learn that setting an intent is just the beginning. Creating space in my life and head for what will show up is where the work begins. We are oriented to take action. Being with our experience is uncomfortable, so we react to what comes at us. I found myself down the road wondering how I got myself there. Often it was by not applying the ROC formula. I did not slow down, I did not open up to a bigger possibility, and I did not act from a connected place.

If we need to act, how about we choose what it will be?

Rather than sitting on our assess and waiting, jumping into a disconnected action, or reacting to what is coming at us, how about we act in a way that supports us?

As children of ancient hunters, we are oriented to action. That action protected us and brought food to the tribe. We responded to our environment for our survival. That orientation was acceptable when our environments had minimal stimuli, and we were not continuedly stressed out and hyper-aroused.

Today we become trapped in a cycle of reaction that often leads to more stress and disconnection, all driving toward not achieving what we want. How about we create intentional adversity and challenges that appease our need to be doing – and improves us?

Focusing on growing builds the skills needed to reach our goals. Rather than waiting for what life brings you to react to, create YOUR own challenges that train you. By shifting from being passive to being active, you will begin to train yourself that through work, you can achieve what you want.

Possibly the biggest advantage is that you will determine what your challenges will be.

Shifting from being a victim of circumstances or sabotaging your life to taking intentional action trains your body and mind to create and persevere through challenges. Reorienting from waiting to creating may not immediately bring what you want. It will more likely deliver what you need.

How often have you thought you wanted something only to realize that it was not what you needed? Being proactive with intentional challenges sets you on a path to developing the muscle to not run from hard work. So, when you are at the place of making the RIGHT decision, you do not fold.

Where have you — or do you — run from challenges? We all have places or ways we avoid – what are yours?

As you share your places of avoidance with others, share what is under them, causing you to not take the challenging action. The more we feel, own, and express what drives the avoidance or saboteurs, the more likely we are set free to get what we want.

Once you have dropped down to what was not owned, share what intentional challenge you will engage in to build that muscle. For example, if you avoid asking women out for dates, commit to calling three women in the next week. The focus of the calls is not success; the focus is being with the full experience of the challenge. Feel what you have avoided feeling. Be willing to make a fool of yourself in building your authenticity muscle.

Begin to create a series of completed challenges. Success is less important than follow-through and being present through the process. Do not allow the challenge to be another way of checking  out. Leverage your investment by being more present than ever before. ROC it as you shift from reacting to leading.