The comfort zone is a dangerous place to take up residence for a lifetime. As good and as enticing as it is, in the end you are robbed of your happiness, contentment, peace and the joy of life. If you listen closely to people, they will tell you how miserable they are. For instance, you’ll hear…”I should have done that when…”…”I wished I had pursued…”…”I waited too late to…”…”I missed out on…”, it continues on and on. After you have clearly identified what you want for your life, be sure you don’t fall into any of these 6 traps:

Trap#1: Spending too much time trying to convince others about your decision

There is nothing more self-defeating than to make a decision and then spend endless time trying to convince other people to buy into the decision you made to do or pursue something you have been longing to do. I met a woman who was so excited about having her own business and the chance to make a difference in the lives of others as well as create wealth for herself and family. She discussed it with her family members and decided to make an investment in the business. However, she hasn’t moved beyond her investment. I asked her what‘s going on, her reply, “ I’m still talking to my family about it”. Stand in your power of choice and believe you are capable of making a decision that is right for you.

Trap#2: Living in the “illusion of time”

How many times have you said, “I don’t have time to do that. I have so much on my plate now”. But in reality, we are really distracted by other things in our life that we are attached to. Kim George, in her book, Coaching into Greatness, identifies an equation that explains why we don’t have enough time to do what we can do: Distraction + Justification = Avoidance. What you are really saying is…”it’s not that important”. Most importantly, this is another excuse for procrastination or fear of failure. Safety in the illusion of time becomes convenient to stay small and not reach for the stars.

Trap#3: Focusing too much on the external – not on the internal

Women seem to fall notoriously into this trap unconsciously. It amazes me to see women spend enormous amounts of time and money to look beautiful on the outside. Believe me, I love to look good and believe wholeheartedly in taking care of yourself. Consequently, too many women stop there. Personal development is vital for your emotional, spiritual and mental stability. It is an on-going journey of self-improvement and self-discovery. If you want to make changes in your life, you must take little steps everyday. Observe and pay attention to what’s going on in your life, see what’s getting in your way. Outer accessories are temporal, your inner spirit cries for attention. Stop, look and listen!

Trap#4: Never accepting that you are “good enough”

This is definitely a ‘show stopper’. Being prepared doesn’t have a lot to do with this one. I know many individuals who have all the credentials, accolades, accomplishments and more, yet still see themselves as not being good enough. I confess, I’ve been there myself before. The culprit is belief. The truth is that you already have what you need to do and be who you are. It’s just waiting for you to walk in your greatness and …BE IT!

Trap#5: Allowing your situation/circumstances to dictate your life

I love it when George Bernard Shaw said, “People are always blaming circumstances for what they are. I do not believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they cannot find them, they make them”. And I also believe that if you shift from a ‘problem state of mind’ to a ‘solution state of mind’, you will find your way. There isn’t anything you can’t achieve when you have a vision…you might have to make some adjustments or take a different route. Winners look for ways to overcome the obstacles; whiners moan, groan and focus on how painful it is to keep going.

Trap#6: Filling everybody’s cup up – except your own

Where have you heard this? “In case we lose air pressure in the cabin, the oxygen masks will drop. If you have a child, please put your mask on first, before you put on theirs”. There is an obvious reason for that. You can’t pour into everyone else and still have some left for yourself. There is nothing wrong with taking care of your family, serving in your spiritual community or sowing into the lives of others. I have heard countless stories from people who have regrets about how they invested their energy and resources into others and didn’t get a chance to pursue what they wanted in life. Find a balance, set some boundaries so you won’t have to look back and ask…where did my life go?

Being aware of your own barriers can help you get out of your own way and move from the trap to the track that will lead you to your destination.