It seems that for any step forward in life, there are always ongoing shuffles backwards. For change to happen we need to make this step. Right?

Whilst the elation that you get from moving from your comfort zone isexhilarating, the negative feelings that occur on your subsequent attempt is pretty disheartening! We are tempted to slide back to our safe, comfy but stagnant old spots.

Throughout my recovery the saying, “One step forward means two steps back” has definitely been my experience. In fact, my backward steps are more like a zillion leaps. Despite knowing this, it still leaves me feeling so gutted and disheartened. But I have also gradually learnt to better navigate these inevitable emotions so that I can keep moving forward.

For example, during my last physio session I seemed to finally be able to move forward when running. Despite it being quite muddy and cold,I somehow ran consistently for 15 metres. My physio noted my efforts (which of course I brushed aside), highlighting to him what I felt could be improved. However, hearing his positive remarks had inwardly shifted my focus. I was quietly chuffed. Braving the cold weather had been worth it!

But a week later, on a beautiful day, I spent the entire session trying to recover from nearly face-planting. I’m not sure what went wrong. I definitely couldn’t blame the amazing sunny weather, I was actually feeling less fatigued and my wrist injury was basically healed! Despite this, I physically couldn’t move like I had. With each failed attempt, I became more and more frustrated. I returned home after the session, feeling gutted and so disheartened.

However, remembering that it’s times like this when I just feel like I’m not making any progress that it’s vital to get perspective. I need to remind myself where I’ve come from, acknowledge that it’s disheartening and tough but stay mindful that I’m still moving. I’m still trying.

Throughout my recovery the importance of reflecting on these uncomfy feelings and seeing them as a normal response to any change and also being mindful of the opportunity for growth is so vital in distancing myself from any potential negativity.

Shifting your perspective from the negatives of the situation to the positive aspects is crucial. Almost re-framing the situation. I know for me quite often during my rehab session it is my physio that will elicit the positive. Whilst I may not completely agree, his remarks do help me alter my perspective.

So, when you feel like giving up, reverting to the often ‘easier’ habitual option, try reflecting on the situation. Acknowledge your feelings and try reframing things. Perhaps enlist another to help you to see past the backward step and note the positive direction you’re moving in.

 Focus on the ‘step forward’…