Chloe Leibowitz

Pushing forward. Making progress. Whether we actively try to do it or not, we all know that’s the only way for us to achieve our goals. Without challenging ourselves and trying new things, we find ourselves standing still, or even going backwards! But before we get into thinking in more detail about what happens when you don’t push forward, we need to start by thinking about fear.

Fear doesn’t shut you down. It wakes you up!

Do you feel the fear?

In our years of working with women in business, we’ve become familiar with (and indeed have experienced ourselves!) the fears that can set in and cause you to hold back. You start to play small and stop going after the goals you really want to accomplish because you’re scared. This fear doesn’t very often make much sense when it is deconstructed. However, it most definitely does feel all-consuming. It has huge power to throw you off track, keep you small and prevents you from reaching your potential or sharing your talents with the world. In short, when we feel the fear, it stops us from pushing forward!

On the flip side, when our coaching clients come to work with us they are in a space where they are ready to push forward in their businesses. They’re ready to achieve what they set out to do but just haven’t quite managed it yet. Essentially, they are ready to “feel the fear and do it anyway”! They’ve had enough of being controlled by it. Instead, they want to bust through those barriers, because deep down they know they can do it. They just need some help to get there.

And trust us – getting to that space of being ready to get out of your comfort zone and push forward is amazing. It’s exactly where we should all want to be!

What happens when we don’t push forward?

We may all have that aspiration, but actually, getting stuck in our businesses, and in our heads, is extremely common. It’s also hugely frustrating for us to see when there is is also so much potential! But what happens when we don’t push forward? Here are some of the common pitfalls of playing small, together with some advice about what you could do to make subtle shifts to change things.

1. Wondering why you’re doing this.

When you get lost, you stop making progress. You lose any momentum or visibility and that you don’t have a voice people are listening to. Then inevitably, you wonder “why am I doing this”?! It’s a classic. It’s deflating at the least, and it can be a slippery slope to undoing all of your hard work. Then you totally lose sight of your why. The very thing you need to keep you going. If you allow your brain to keep going down this route you will talk yourself out of your business and everything you have worked for.

When this hits, it’s most definitely time to revisit the vision you originally had for your business and your future. Sometimes, we just get distracted by the information overload and we start comparing ourselves to others. We lose sight of our values and we veer off track. We start chasing the ‘shiny things’ and get distracted.

If this resonates with you, ask yourself the question “why did I want to do this”? Get back in touch with your passion and your drive. Think about what have to offer others and what business success means for you in the long run. Take some time out to evaluate all of this and then come back fighting with a completely solid vision!

2. Struggling with a lack of confidence and self-belief

When you aren’t pushing forward, you aren’t getting yourself out there or making moves to grow your business and your brand. The result? Your confidence will start to suffer. Going from thriving to hiding is easy when if we’re not doing anything to push forward.

In order for us to make progress, we have to keep moving outside of our comfort zone. This isn’t an easy thing to do by any means. Confidence is a muscle, and we need to stretch it to grow. If we’re not doing the things that show us we can, how can we build our self-belief? 

Remember. You don’t have to do things that absolutely terrify you. Those things are in your ‘panic zone’. Instead, pick the challenges that see you stretching slightly out of your comfort zone. Then feel the huge reward of showing yourself that you can. You’d be surprised how quickly you can start to bolster your confidence again and get back out there.

3. Lacking momentum due to inaction.

As you find that confidence dwindling and doubts about your abilities creeping in, you will inevitably stop taking action. This is a sure fire way to stop all momentum in your business. And we need momentum to get our message across. To build a following. To share our brand. When we don’t push forward, we stop getting any feedback or interaction. And this is a true killer, impacting even further on your shrinking confidence.

So instead, work out what the actions are that you’ve stopped doing. It could be sharing your blog, or social media posts or getting out networking. Decide what small actions you could start taking to get the wheels moving and build that momentum back up.

4. Getting bored

When we’re building things up in our business, or even once we’re very established, we still need to keep reviewing. We need to keep checking that what we’re doing what makes us happy and that it will lead us to our version of success. We also need to ensure that we plan well to get us to the point where we can just do the tasks or use the skills we really love. Otherwise we risk getting bored and disillusioned with what we are doing. This generally means we’ve taken our eye off the ball and we’re not pushing forward. We’ve got comfortable with things and we’re just ticking over, but we’re not giving ourselves any challenge.

The remedy for this one is to do a thorough review. What’s working and what’s not. What needs a shake up? It’s always a good idea at this point to get fresh eyes on your business. Find the right people to be around, like other business people in your network. Perhaps consider working with a coach to get some really focused input. Then you can really start pushing forward!

5. Giving up

Ultimately, what happens when you don’t push forward is that you stop getting out there. You stop shouting about yourself and what you do. You fail to find your people and creating the sort of momentum that builds both your business and your confidence. Essentially, you are likely to end up feeling like you should just jack it all in for an easier life. A ‘normal job’. Sure, all of us can think along those lines. We can all have our moments of doubt, but it’s what you do about it that matters.

Once again, this is the prompt for you to take a good long look at what you are doing. How can your business make your heart sing again? How can you feel fulfilled? What does success look like to you and how can you start pushing forward to achieve it? Sometimes, a reassessment of your priorities and the passion for your business can be just what you need to reignite the fire.

How to get started

So, what do you think? Has this post resonated with you in any way? Do you want to let those fears and concerns about being good enough win? Or do you want to get out there and grab your opportunity right now?

We hope that by showing you what happens when you don’t push forward, you’ll see how important it is that you do. And we would love to help you to do exactly that! It might be that a one-off Away Day might be enough of a catalyst. Or business coaching might be the longer-term intervention that you need to create sustainable change. More information on both of these things can be found on our Business Coaching page. Alternatively, if it’s people that you’re missing, come and join our Community or an event!