Everyone knows when you’re taking a trip to an unknown place you need a road map to refer to in order to reach your destination. Well, my friends, that is exactly what we are doing in creating a life program, a practical tool you can begin using today to start changing your life and moving past the obstacles that are keeping you from being truly happy.
Our first two were simple, but maybe not easy (read step one here and step two here) – defining what you and your life looks like when you are truly happy and then identifying five obstacles you are encountering that get in the way of you being happy. If you are satisfied with what you’ve got from the first two steps, it’s time to move forward.
The third step is again simple, yet thought provoking: Write down five practical ways you can overcome these obstacles.
For example, if one of the items on your list is to have a better relationship with God, then you want to choose one practical way to move you toward your goal of being closer to God.
You might choose to commit to going to Mass every Sunday if you are not doing so now, or Mass during the week if you are a faithful Sunday attendee. You might choose to go to confession if it’s been longer than six months since you last went, or maybe to begin going every two weeks instead of just whenever. You might choose to commit to spending time in prayer before you get ready for the day…Really, the possibilities are endless, but should be determined by you because you know yourself and your life.
If one of the obstacles holding you back happens to be anger toward your ex-spouse or someone else who has hurt you, you might consider picking up an excellent book entitled How to Forgive Yourself and Others. You may want to consider starting a journal where you can write freely about how you feel and begin to disseminate that anger in a safe and confidential way. If therapy is in order, I encourage you to visit CatholicTherapists.com where you can search in your area for solid Catholic counselors.
As you make this list of five practical ways to overcome the obstacles you’ve identified, make sure the means you choose are realistic and do-able. The best way to become discouraged is by trying to accomplish something that is unrealistic or out of your control.
Once you’ve got these tools in place, you’ve got your road map ready.
And now, for the fourth step…