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Sunday, August 02, 2015

Meet a Challenge Head-On

When I met a big challenge over a year ago now, I read a lot about challenges. Most articles stated that it's best to meet a big challenge head-on.

Now I'm watching some that I honor meet challenge, and I'm hoping that they meet the challenge head-on.

What does that mean?

Meeting a challenge-head on includes the following steps:
  1. Revisit your values. What do you believe in? Who are you and who do you want to be?
  2. Analyze the challenge. What did you do well, and where did you go wrong? Were your wrong turns due to misconception, outdated understanding, poor behavior, lack of support, ignorance, lack of discipline, and/or malintent?
  3. Own your behavior, good and not so good, and fully understand why you did what you did. Be transparent--apologize for that which is wrong or ill intended. 
  4. Listen to all parties. Be open to their perspectives, ideas, and thoughts. Listen to yourself too. 
  5. Plan for change, if needed, and do right in the future. Ask questions and illustrate in words the facts and parts of the problem you don't understand, own, or believe to be true. 
  6. Work with the other parties to make sense of the issue. Detangle the event step-by-step together since only when all parties fully and truthfully understand the events will positive progress be possible. Then craft a plan for better work, collaboration, and effort.
  7. Move forward. Revisit the issue here and there to make sure you and the others involved are moving in the positive direction planned. Seek help to reach goals as needed. 
When we hide behind big problems and challenges, we never move forward. When we bring the challenges forward, big and small, we pave the way for better effort, community, and resolve.

I hope those that I know and honor will meet their challenges head-on. I hope the result will be betterment for all involved. I hope that the onlookers will support good action, learning, and positive change and growth. 

As I think back to my own challenge, I followed my own advice in many ways. I owned my actions. I apologized where appropriate. I sought the wisdom of others. I practiced new think, action, and effort. Have I fully met the challenge? Not yet as it's a process. The next step involves the readiness of others to move forward as well. Some have done that with me, and with those individuals, there has been wonderful growth and change, and for others (and me), there's still work to do. But there's time and good will, so I know we'll get there.

How do you meet challenge head-on? How has that helped you, your friends, family members, and colleagues to live better, more productive, and beneficial lives? What gave you the courage to embrace the challenge with honesty, transparency, and positive action? And, how has that positively affected your life?