Rethink Your Strategy


Article by Wendy McCance

I am picturing myself swimming in the ocean.  There is a boat I am trying to swim to.  It’s out a ways and I am determined to swim to the boat, jump on and feel the satisfaction of getting there.  Once I’m on the boat, safe and sound, I will sit back, have a drink and enjoy the fact that I made it.

In this daydream I am having, I imagine that the waves are rough.  Swimming to the boat is, quite frankly a little scary and a daunting task.  I am a strong swimmer and I know how to swim in those waves to get to the boat-at least I thought I knew how.

I can feel myself making progress and then, without warning, I see that I am being pushed back towards shore.  Essentially I feel like I am spinning my wheels.  Should I just give up and head to shore?  Should I ask for some advice on how to get to that boat?  Maybe I should slow down for a minute and reevaluate what isn’t working and then try again.

This is how it feels to carve out a career as a writer.  You get some big breaks and make progress.  You can see the boat coming closer to you, but you are suddenly swept back towards shore.  It’s a challenge to stay above water, to not give up or get tired out.  There has to be another way to get towards your goal.

I have had an appreciation journal for over a year.  I remember how the smallest details used to thrill me.  Hell, they’d make my day.  I might have written that I had broken the 100 follower mark on my blog or I got a valuable connection on Twitter.  Everything was exciting and new and everything I did seemed to gain speed so quickly.

If I saw into the future back then and was able to see how I have progressed, I would have opened a bottle of champagne and celebrated.  That’s the sad thing about making progress.  At some point it takes much more to impress me.  The simplest things don’t register on my radar anymore.  In the bigger picture, each little step is crucial to the final outcome.  I should enjoy the ride more and recognize the leaps and bounds I have made.

Instead, I feel impatient.  Haven’t I put in the hard work for quite a while now?  Where is the steady flow of income that I am hoping makes me feel too busy to take on another assignment?  Am I still charting the right path or have I gone off course a bit?  These are the type of questions I ask myself to keep me grounded.

I have often heard that there comes a time when people expect to see the big success.  If they aren’t moving as fast as they had hoped, they give up on the whole idea.  I can’t understand why someone would throw in the towel when things get complicated or seem like you have hit a brick wall.  This is the when you should celebrate.  Honestly, this is the moment you are half way there.

Think about it.  You have worked hard and used up all of your creativity to get where you are.  If you can step back, analyze where you want to be and make a plan on how to get there, many more moments that will thrill you will begin to come your way.  You will have a deeper appreciation for yourself because you are a survivor.  You don’t give up because you know you are destined for something great.

Sometimes you need to rethink your strategy.  Do some reading, talk with friends, watch an inspirational movie, by all means allow yourself to relax and stimulate your mind so that you can recreate and move on to the next level.

If you read about any successful person admired by many, you will find out it took years to make the major dent that they were looking for.  perseverance is the name of the game.  Challenge yourself and realize that if you are passionate about what you are doing, the success will follow.  It can’t be forced.  It is a gradual development that happens so quietly that if you blink, you will miss the signs of progress.

Next time you hit the wall, picture swimming in the waves.  Think about that boat you want to get to.  Chart a course with the best method to achieve that goal.  Never give up. Realize that when you finally make it on that boat, you will have fulfilled something tremendous.  You will have succeeded.

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Wendy McCance

Wendy McCance is a Michigan based freelance writer and social media consultant. Wendy has gained attention as the founder of the popular blog Searching for the Happiness which can be viewed in 6 local papers online, including the Oakland Press.The combination of writing skills and social media knowledge is what makes Wendy such a powerhouse to work with. Stay tuned for opportunities to advertise, guest post and as always, have your questions answered.

To contact Wendy McCance about a writing assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: [email protected]

12 thoughts on “Rethink Your Strategy

  1. Wendy - Your post seems to hit home with many bloggers and writers. I too have had to sit back and rethink my path that I am traveling. I have tweaked and chosen a different path when needed. I too would like to think back and see how much I have accomplished. A great glass of wine would be in order. :-)

  2. Hi Wendy per usual you are talking to me again. I have been swimming so hard and trying not to drown (I apologize non swimmer)As you know I have had so much my plate and I kept saying I don’t have the time. A writers group that I am in and I kept saying that and someone said Just start but things often are easy as people think. There are distractions blockage and as I am saying I am to busy I am setting the stage to do this. I have a couple of blogging jobs that I haven’t started because I have to learn how to blog first and that is my mission for today and you better believe that I accept it.
    It is so exciting being a member of AWAI and having access to the library and all of those training video’s because it will mean having access to information on building my web sites to starting to blog. I am finally giving myself permission to not only live the dream but do something that is one of my passions.
    Thanks for being there once again to help me get started.
    Peace always.
    To Living the dream, Gentle nudges/encouragement as well as finally not only finding my happiness but taking steps to living The Dream as well as enjoying the rewards that finding and allowing myself to do something about finding that happiness.


  3. I think we can all feel this way :) I struggle with feeling the same way with regards to blogging. I have had my blog 2 1/2 years and seen a number of other food bloggers have major success. It can really get to me, but I always try to remember that each of us has things happen at different times. Great post!

  4. Wendy - I understand your process in working toward success and that the tasks at hand can be daunting as you described in your metaphor of swimming to the boat. I guess I would ask, “Do we ever stop swimming?” When are we happy with what we’ve accomplished and what does that feel like?

    Just some questions I’ve asked myself of late in feeling (in lieu of swimming) my way through the process?

  5. Wendy, you write “Realize when you finally make it on that boat, you will have fulfilled something tremendous”. Notice how you also wrote, “At some point it takes much more to impress me”. It seems when we ‘reach that boat’ we are relieved for awhile; then soon desire to venture further in the water again.

    Lots of people who own big boats are still ‘searching for the happiness’. This article reveals the need and value of savoring the process, the available support, and the destination. It all evolves -*- as one.

    Experience and enjoy the journey …, prize the available support …, and marvel at the successive and evolving desired destinations -*- as well.

    ‘Rethink Your Strategy’ and ‘Expand Your Strategy’ like this -*- and notice how aspects of your evolving … journey, vehicle, and accomplishments in life … supportively unfold for you. Sail on .*.

    Thanks again.

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