What is Inaction Costing You?

Recently, I spent time at my friend’s cottage to reflect and recalibrate in a pretty ideal setting - waking up to a view of the lake surrounded by lush trees, looking at the patterns of the clouds to gauge the next best time to paddle, space to reflect, and have deep conversations with great company.

I didn’t realize how much I needed this getaway until I got a glimpse of the lake. It became very clear to me that I was suppressing the actions that I feared most. I needed to confront a very difficult workplace situation that recently occurred. Also, I was experiencing writer’s block and I realized that writing is one of the best ways for me to digest my thoughts and be creative.

Taking action and making decisions - no matter how tiny or big - is not an easy task. Each of us has our own way of making decisions and this depends a lot on context. It doesn’t matter if the situation you’re presented with pushed you to make your decisions impulsively or if you have analyzed your pros and cons list to death. It is inevitable that there will be outcomes to that action or decision whether it’s positive, negative or balanced.  

My judgement on how and when to take action and make decisions have been guided by an accumulation of my experiences and self-reflection. And these experiences have been shaped by a lifetime of conversations with mentors and those in my trusted circle who I’ve come to learn from at each stage of my life and career.

The catch is, I still need to apply what I've learned and make it happen. I have to take responsibility for my decisions and actions.

At each of my crossroads - big or small - it’s usually my mental blocks that impede my success or progress me to the next opportunity. I’m usually the one holding myself back from making a decision or taking the next step - no one else. Carefully listen to your inner voice, identify the issue, and accept your present situation. Once you have an understanding of your circumstances, there are usually decisions that you'll need to make and actions that you'll need to take.

Consider the questions below to help get you unstuck:

  • What’s the problem?

  • What's in your control to change?

  • What’s the cost (can be good or bad) to your body, mind, and spirit if you don’t decide to take action?

  • What do you gain if you DO take action?

  • What and how much are you willing to tolerate being in the same situation?

  • How much of your decision is based on listening to your own inner voice versus what you think you ‘should’ do?

ACTION: Catalog your issue in a journal or on a spreadsheet. Notice any themes that emerge. What options do you have? While your options may not always be ideal it may create an opportunity that will lead you to other possibilities. Keep unwrapping what’s in front of you. You’ll find the answer.