Top Ten Tips on...

What’s Stopping You…?

9 January 2023
Effective Top Tens - Podcast
Quick, practical tips on a wide range of management and personal development themes.
Ten top tips focusing on the barriers we often have to overcome (and many of which are of our own making) in achieving what we want to achieve.

you'll like these tips if you're interested in...


know what the issue is, and that you’re stuck

you have to be aware of what the issue is, and that you're stuck, that it's not going anywhere, that you're actually making no progress.


take ownership

don’t wait for something else to happen so that the problem disappears or is resolved. Recognize that if the problem is going to be fixed, you have to do something about it. Don't wait for circumstances to change or others to help out. Stop waiting, start doing.



ensure that you move, that you do something to resolve the problem that there has to be something different happen. There has to be a change, which means you have to move from the current situation to something else. You just have to alter your state from waiting to doing, from thinking to acting.


ask for help

don't stay alone with your issue or problem. One reason for not moving is you simply don't know what to do. You know you have a problem, but don’t know what solution is. Many people see asking for help as a sign of weakness. Actually seeking help asking if somebody else has any ideas is a sign of strength. If you think about it, if you ask for help and somebody can't help, well, you're no worse off; but if somebody can help you, you're massively better off. And don’t be concerned about imposing on the other person. As an adult, they can say yes or no. Also think about how you would feel if you were asked if you could help? You might feel flattered that you’d been seen and chosen as helpful… So it can be a win-win: the person asking may well get some help, and the person being asked may feel good about it.


stop your negative self-talk

if somebody suggests an idea, or an idea comes into your head, make sure that your first thought is not a negative one, or if it is counterbalance it with something more positive. We can get stuck in negative thinking if we have a problem. So avoid in particular the “yes, but…” response in your head. If we're not careful, what we'll do is end up justifying our stuck position rather than accepting some possibilities for moving it forward.


stop tolerating….

stop tolerating or accepting your current situation. Familiarity breeds contempt. If you've had a difficulty that's lasted for some time, there's a danger that you've now become comfortable with your discomfort. You may have just grown to tolerate or accept your situation rather than being agitated to get it sorted and move it forward. You may have decided ‘ this is just me’, or ‘that's just how it is’. If you’ve become too accepting of the situation it will discourage you from seeking a solution.


avoid self limiting beliefs

whatever we believe we give ourselves permission to achieve. And that means if we believe that the problem we have can't be resolved, then all our actions are organised unconsciously to justify that belief. Otherwise we can't sustain the belief. So if we believe the problem is not resolvable, then. It's not resolvable because you won't put any effort into resolving something you believe can't be resolved.


consider whether it is an embedded habit

your issue may simply be a routine of doing things in a particular way, that’s become an unconscious habit. You’ve allowed a repetitive experience to create your issue, rather than a choice. You feel you can't change because you think that it’s part of you, of who you are, when in fact it’s simply a learned habit, something that you've accidentally invested in over the period that has now become stuck.


be disciplined

this really follows on from the previous tip. Habits are really difficult to change. You have to be aware of them and be persistent in changing them. And that requires discipline in some ways. And this is sad, but true. It's easier to stay with your problem than to invest the time and effort, the discipline, to change it. It's easier to stay with your problem than to fix it because fixing it requires discipline.


find the right strategy

work out the strategy that works for you. It's no good being disciplined and putting a lot of effort in, if that particular approach is never going to work. It's really quite difficult sometimes for people to see whether if their problem continues, is it because they lack discipline or is it because they're on the wrong strategy?

Effective Top Tens - Podcast
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