Ever hear the phrase “Two steps forward, one step back”? Meaning that during the process of advancing forward, we sometimes hit setbacks, but as long as we keep moving we eventually will succeed?
Two steps forward, one step back is only a good thing if we are progressing towards a worthwhile goal. Sometimes we need to be willing to take a voluntary step backwards and make sure we are on the right track.
What do I mean by a step backward? Well everyone has a situation that’s different.
You may be three years into your college degree and realize that you have no interest in pursuing a career in your major. Step back, get some counsel from someone that you trust and has a valuable opinion. It may seem right now like you’ve just wasted the last three years. But that is not a good reason to waste the next twenty.
Sometimes stepping back might mean walking away from a relationship that is hurting us. If you are in a relationship with someone that is negative about your dreams and goals, confront them. Either they change their attitude or you stop associating with them. This may seem cruel, but would you want someone close to you to be responsible for destroying all of your dreams and goals for the next twenty years? How would that affect your relationship?
Some people may need to step back and streamline their finances to get them under control. Most people are so concerned with status they will stay enslaved to a bank just for the sake of living in a home they had no business buying in the first place (or driving a car, sailing a boat, or eating at that trendy restaurant). Take a step back, downsize, streamline, and start using a black pen instead of a red pen for your bank account.
Some people might need to turn their backs on whatever they are currently doing for income. You may have lots of experience. And you may be good at it. But if it ain’t paying the dollars, then staying there doesn’t make any sense.
When you are climbing the ladder of success and realize it is leaning against the wrong building, climbing faster is not the answer. Sometimes success requires a step back. And, of course, stepping back off a ladder is the fastest way back down.
Have you ever had to go backwards in order to make progress?