Stumble… Fall… Breathe…

by Aileen

Does it ever seem that just as a goal is within reach, it somehow moves a bit
further away?

Perhaps it’s illusion, or maybe perception.

In moving toward a particular goal of mine, I’ve been feeling off-balance.

I’m completely immersed in climbing the mountain toward my goals, but it feels like I’m circling around instead of climbing up.  Have you experienced this?

Randomness happens, obstacles show up and the road is not smooth.

With great enthusiasm, I want to sprint, but my steps feel small and the pace feels slow.  I seek to run in this snail’s shell of mine and I stumble, I fall… then breathe.

Part of reaching, growing and risking means, we will most likely have some successes while we may miss a few.

Sometimes the hard spots feel never-ending, and fear and doubt creep in and intensify the challenge.  We often hear “it’s the journey not the destination” but sometimes we just really want the destination.

So we stumble sometimes, and we experience set-backs, delays and other gremlins. A few things can help give us perspective, helps us lighten up, laugh and reconnect to adventure.

Keys to moving forward along the journey towards living our vision

Self forgivenessBe gentle with yourself. Self love and self forgiveness are often overlooked. We have such wonderful hopes, dreams, and expectations and sometimes in our desire to stretch and reach, we demand too much from ourself and inadvertently beat ourselves up, rather than allowing us to be the wonderful beings we are.

Mini-breaksWhen we are wanting to sprint towards a goal we may not want to pause for  a break. But they can give us a fresh perspective and re-energize us.

Consistency Our steps towards our dreams may be small, and the pace may not be the speed we’d like, but with consistent actions, continuous steps, we will go the distance.

Laughter The ability to laugh at our self, liberates us.  It’s a powerful choice. Try laughing at fear, doubt and other obstacles when the gut reaction is to anything but laugh.

Gratitude Gratitude has the power to lift our spirits, renew our hope and give us the second wind to keep going.

Adventure When we look at our journey toward our dream as an adventure and simply observe the obstacles, disappointments, bumps and falls along the way. Having a sense of adventure  helps get us beyond the moments when we might otherwise consider turning back.

Breathe A deep exhale, and inhale gives us space.  It releases pressure and opens up to life’s possibilities.  It’s easy to get myopic when we journey toward our goals. Stepping back and breathing deeply allow spirit to come in and lead the way.

Along the adventurous journey toward your dreams you may stumble, and you may fall, just pause for a moment  to breathe.  It’s just part of the adventure, even when it doesn’t quite feel like it.

Today I breathe through my fears, doubts, and challenges and join you in the amazing experience of life.

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Joy April 15, 2011

Hi Aileen,
Thank you!!! For today *I* am breathing through my fears, doubts, and challenges..right this moment and lots of moments previous! A few days ago a friend asked my what was my biggest fear and I couldn’t answer her, because I’m actually living through it–choosing to open my heart daily to more than I can imagine, even though my first thought is wow, this sure hurts…As you described, I feel spiraling instead of sprinting..and there are truly many blessings in these steps forward, I just need to remember to breathe, to slow down and be thankful, and to allow for..The tips you share are all excellent! Thank you for this gift today:)
Joy´s last [type] ..Passion Series- Moments of Pure Bliss…


Aileen April 17, 2011

Joy, I do love how you live with such openness. Courage shows up in so many ways, we often don’t recognize it. Living with openness to life and taking small steps while it looks like nothing is happening, deepening our faith as we continue on – that is courage. It makes like the amazing adventure that is is …. even though sometimes it feels like just stumbling and tumbling.


Angela Artemis April 15, 2011

Hi Aileen,
I know what you mean about “wanting the destination not the journey.” Sometimes we think it’s taking us too long to achieve our goals and we feel like we’re doing the same things over and over and not getting anywhere, but what I’ve discovered is that we are making progress. We may not be able to see our progress from the perspective of where we are though – but others on the outside can see it and vouch for it.

Your advice is perfect and just what I need at this time too. I’ve been experiencing butterflies and fears, and overwhelm by the process lately. I need to remember your tips and treat myself more kindly and remember that life is an adventure!

Thank you so much for this much needed pick me up!
Angela Artemis´s last [type] ..Life is Not A Race – Go At Your Own Pace


Aileen April 17, 2011

Isn’t it funny how we don’t see the progress, yet others can. It often amazes me. I find it to be a great exercise in faith, patience, love and surrender. Ahhhh, to just breathe – exhale – and find a sense of peace with the process.


David | Listen Feel Breathe April 16, 2011

Hi Aileen,
Thanks for some great tips to help us in our daily journey. It is great to be moving towards our goals but we certainly have more than enough bumps along the way. I find that keeping sight of what I am aiming for, taking regular breaks, reminding myself of why I am doing certain things, and making continuous choices to remain positive helps me the most.

I like your idea of having a sense of adventure- I think that’s one that I could use to increase my enthusiasm when it dwindles.
David | Listen Feel Breathe´s last [type] ..Living for the future- missing out on the present


Aileen April 17, 2011

David, this is brilliant – “keep­ing sight of what I am aim­ing for, tak­ing reg­u­lar breaks, remind­ing myself of why I am doing cer­tain things, and mak­ing con­tin­u­ous choices to remain pos­i­tive helps me the most. ”
So very true! I’m going to follow your advice :)


Lance April 16, 2011

…and yes, I stumble too…

You know what?? I actually get a lot of that stumbling in! (so I better keep laughing, right!!) The idea of a mini break – that’s one that has been so good for me (now…to remember to take those breaks when I need them…)
Lance´s last [type] ..The Sabbatical


Aileen April 17, 2011

Lance, you are truly fabulous! “I actu­ally get a lot of that stum­bling in! ” YES we better just keep laughing and not get to serious about the great big adventure.
I’m off to have a chocolate mini break now :)


Sally Waters April 17, 2011

Hi Aileen

I’m new to your site and just wanted to say thank you for this post. So often it feels like we are trying and trying but not really getting anywhere. It’s so helpful to have this reminder that the road is not smooth but of course every challenge we overcome – or not! – teaches us something that moves us further in the direction we want to go.

In fact the whole premise of your site – Kaizen – is really appropriate for me at the moment. It feels like you’ve written it just for me!

Thanks for some great content!



Aileen April 17, 2011

Hi Sally. Thank you for your comment :) it all does move us further in the direction we want to go – even when we get some surprise detours. It takes a lot of courage and openness to live fully and stay with the journey – moving through those times when it seems like nothing is happening and we’re getting nowhere. Letting go of judgment and opening up to love, spirit and faith.


John Sherry April 18, 2011

Your advice is beautifully crafted Aileen with such gentle words that act as wings of hope. The whole energy ethic here is caring and nurturing and makes me feel that I can’t fail and that I can pick myself and my hopes up again when something pulls them down. You may have just kept many a dream and many a soul from fading with this post and for that I applaud you and send you a little kiss for good measure ;) x
John Sherry´s last [type] ..Why Life Changing Inspiration Happens When You Least Expect


Aileen April 26, 2011

Thank you John :) sometimes it’s a positive thing to talk about falling down – even though law of attraction disagrees


Tess The Bold Life April 18, 2011

I felt just like this last week. The two that work best for me are gratitude and breathing. Oh did I forget about living in the moment…silly me, it’s all that exists anyway. You can do it. I believe in you.


Aileen April 26, 2011

Gratitude and breathing are pretty freaking powerful!


Living the Balanced Life April 19, 2011

You mention a snail. A snail does move slowly, so slowly it seems as if they are not making progress at all. However, if you were to change your perspective, and look from above, from where the snail began, and their current location, it become’s obvious the progress they have made. Sometime’s you just have to look at things from a different perspective!
Living the Balanced Life´s last [type] ..Does having less stuff make life easier


Aileen April 26, 2011

Bernice, thank you for this perspective!


Justin | Mazzastick April 21, 2011


I am a goal seeker as well and I discovered that it is the journey or process that is the most rewarding. I have a tendency to work too long and hard on my goals without enough rest in between.

Laughter is a great remedy for this as you suggested.
Justin | Mazzastick´s last [type] ..Truth Is Knowing


Aileen April 26, 2011

Sometimes I think stumbling is way for our being to rest when we want to keep it moving.


Ajen April 26, 2011

I Love it! BREATHE!

I remember a time when I had to walk home in the cold night air in upstate New York and I was reciting a line from Robert Frost’s poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”. …and miles to go before I sleep …and miles to go before I sleep.

Ironically, at the time, I was reciting this line for motivation. It was a way to remind me that I am on route to a nice warm house and that this long journey was an exercise of gratitude.

…if it were not for the long journey… how could we experience the kind of sweet sleep that is long and deep?
…if it were not for the cold air… how could we experience the embrace of a warm home?
…if it were not for breath taking moments, how could we truly appreciate the very moment we chose to exhale?
…if it were not for climbing the towering mountain, how could we see the amazing view below, above and all around? … metaphorically speaking, without being on the apex of this mountain, how could we view how far we have traveled (in terms of growth and development) and how could we view the best path to take down with ease (in terms of remaining grounded and humble)???

All the best in your journey to the top, Aileen!
Ajen´s last [type] ..Friends of Benefit


Aileen April 26, 2011

“…and miles to go before I sleep …and miles to go before I sleep.” I know that poem very, very well. Thank you for reminding me of it’s importance.

Your perspective and insight rock!


Todd | ChannelingMyself April 27, 2011

I’ve heard that if we appreciate the experiences we have towards our goal, good or bad, the goal we seek will come to us quicker. We tend to muddle in the negative when it comes which keeps us there longer.
Todd | ChannelingMyself´s last [type] ..The Hypocritical Christian


Joseph Ch'ng April 28, 2011

I’d like to add a new point – Celebrate small wins.

Every wins take us closer to our end goal. And as we celebrate, it makes us see that we are getting closer day by day, no matter how small our win is.

It is also a good time to look back at where we started. To know that we have come this far. For me, that feeling, almost always stops me from wanting to give up, if I am feeling a little demotivated at all.

Thank you for the wonderful post.


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