Let Go: How to handle a dry spell

This newsletter was written a few years ago and I pulled it out this week for a caller who dialed into my radio show to talk about her frustration with a job search process. She was doing all the right things and yet nothing was happening. Once I confirmed that her search approach was on track, I explained the importance of understanding a "dry spell." I hope this message speaks to you as well...A dry spell is a period of time when progress comes to a grinding halt. If you're trying to lose weight, for example, it may be that, despite your best efforts, the scale just won't budge. Or, if you're trying to find a new job, the phone might stop ringing and it may suddenly feel as though no one is hiring in your field. During this period, you're likely to feel frustrated and discouraged. And, as a result, it's common to do one of two things - try harder (to no avail) or give up. This is also the time when self-doubt rears its annoying head.

During a dry spell, you'll probably begin to question yourself and your goals. For example, if you're involved in a job search, you might start second-guessing your credentials, doubting your skills, or questioning your job search strategies altogether. Or, if you're trying to lose weight, you may lose your motivation and go back to the erroneous belief that your stalled progress is related to a lack of discipline. The biggest challenge during a dry spell is to be patient - to sit back, take a deep breath, reevaluate the situation, and know that despite what appears to be "the end of the road," over the horizon is a path that will lead where you most need to go.

Sometimes a dry spell is simply a challenge to maintain faith. We need to trust that all is happening as it should even when we can't yet see results. Other times it may be that we need to loosen our grip and let go of the past - an old habit, an outdated belief, or a strategy that doesn't serve us anymore. Sometimes this letting go is more tangible like ending an unsupportive relationship to set the stage for becoming the "new you." And other times it might be that you need to let go of an unrealistic expectation. I remember one friend who realized this when she reached a weight loss plateau and had to give up the fantasy that her body would ever look like something out of a fashion magazine.

The moral of this story is: Don't lose hope! A dry spell may be exactly what you need to re-evaluate your progress so you can redirect the course of your life. To help you use a dry spell as a catalyst for success, answer the following question:

What do I need to let go of in order to welcome in the new life I desire?

Then, pay attention to what immediately comes to mind. Listen with your heart (not your head) and write down the answers regardless of how strange or unexpected they may be. Once you do, sit with this information for a while before taking action. Then, proceed with a patient heart. When you understand that dry spells are merely speed bumps on the road to a great life, you'll begin to see them as gifts - a reminder to slow down so you can get your bearings, reevaluate your plans, and slowly shed the old you to make way for the new!

Take Action Challenge

Living through a dry spell requires faith and support. Use our Life Makeover community boards to connect with others (you'll find them here), and our Touch of Grace button on our homepage for an inspiring Divine message to help keep you on track (you'll find it here).

This week's video is an empowering message for the gals in our community. I love India Arie! Thanks Susanne ?

Hay House, Inc

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Author Information

Cheryl Richardson

Cheryl Richardson is the author of The New York Times bestselling books, Take Time for Your Life, Life Makeovers, Stand Up for Your Life, The Unmistakable Touch of Grace and her new book The Art of Extreme Self Care. She was the first president of the International Coach Federation and holds one of their first Master Certified Coach credentials.

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