Overcoming those annoying roadblocks


Most people think that external factors are the only roadblocks to discovering your divine design. However, it is often more likely that a person will hit internal roadblocks than external ones.

A few weeks ago, Seth Godin shared a post that highlighted this principle perfectly. Seth points out that our instinct is to externalize the forces that are holding us back, but in fact that’s not the problem.

Oftentimes, we’re our own worst critics and biggest competitors. We’ve all had thoughts like, “You are terrible. Why would anyone read this?” or “You are going to fail so miserably” or “This is never going to work out.” These internal roadblocks can prevent us from discovering our life’s true purpose more than anything coming at us from the outside.

There are numerous ways to overcome the external barriers, but how do we break through those annoying internal barriers that constantly nag us? Here are three tips for overcoming the internal roadblocks on the way to discovering your purpose and divine design:

1. Ask yourself—how bad do you want it?

What seems like an impossible hurdle to overcome is really an internal struggle to determine how bad we want to discover our divine design. No one ever said it would be easy. When we remind ourselves why we’re on the journey in the first place, it gives us the inspiration to break through the internal resistance. Whenever you start to get the inkling that you’re not good enough to become the person you believe you were created to be, remind yourself of the catalyst that launched your journey. Recapture some of that zeal and then move ahead.

2. Avoid overthinking it.

Psychologist Gerd Gigerenzer, whose work was cited in the Malcolm Gladwell bestseller Blink, argues that we’re designed to make smart snap decisions based on limited information. In fact, his research shows that we do it all the time. We are designed to process information so quickly that “rapid cognition”—decisions that spring from hard thinking based on sound experience—can feel more instinctive than scientific. Basically, you need to trust your gut. Overthinking can lead to decision paralysis or indecision, and ultimately prevent you from accomplishing your goal.

3. Try starting at the end.

Sometimes, when you’re facing internal resistance, the best thing to do is think about what it’s going to be like once you’ve reached the pinnacle of your adventure. Then, work your way backward through the barriers. Imagine that moment of discovery when you truly realize your life’s purpose and how incredible that is going to be. Taking a moment to consider the end could stir enough motivation to help you break through the barriers.

I wish I could tell you that once you get past the first internal barrier, it’s smooth sailing for the rest of your journey, but unfortunately there’s nothing further from the truth. Breaking through the internal roadblocks is something that you’re going to have to do throughout your life. While the discipline gets easier each time you do it, there will always be times when you don’t think you can accomplish your goal because of the internal roadblocks in your way. That’s when you apply one of these three tips and keep moving forward.

What are some other ways to overcome the internal roadblocks of discovering your purpose and divine design?