You’re tied to an approach to life that no longer serves you. How long will you stay there?

Jan 28, 2022 | Burnout, Coaching, Thriving

Picture a motorboat out in the harbor.

Imagine that you jump in, turn the key, and start gunning the motor. Its engine is going full force, it’s working hard and churning water like crazy. Yet it’s going nowhere. No forward movement at all.

Why?

It’s still connected to its mooring ball.

On the surface it looks like it should be charging across the water but underneath the waterline, it is held back from forward movement.

You have a goal. You want to move ahead in your personal life or your career. You want to gain something or fix something. You want something better.

Take a breath and be honest now. There is at least one mooring ball—a mindset or approach to life—that is holding you back.

What thoughts, beliefs, and feelings are hidden beneath the surface and blocking your progress, despite all you’re doing to change things?

List them.

Now ask yourself how they impact you and those around you at home and at work. What’s the cost of living tethered to your mooring ball?

Full disclosure: I’ve struggled with several mooring balls, thoughts like these:

  • My achievements aren’t all that remarkable
  • I’m trapped in my current circumstances
  • I’ll feel too guilty if I put my needs first/do what’s best for me/make choices based on my dreams
  • It’s not okay to rest or enjoy life until all my to do’s are done
  • Avoiding the potential judgement of others is a good reason to hold back on going for what I most want

If these thoughts sound familiar, let me reassure you: you’re not alone, and there is hope. In my years as a writer and now as a coach, I’ve had to surface and snip the ropes that held me back. And I’ve seen how common and how corroding they are. I’m helping physicians every day find the clarify, confidence, and courage to do what it takes to find a new level of freedom. It is possible to be set free and to soar across the water, with the sun on your face, the wind in your hair, and your sights on new horizons.

How long are you willing to wait to get started?

Photo credit: Saffu on Unsplash

[ ABOUT THE AUTHOR ]

Diane W. Shannon

MD, MPH, ACC

Diane Shannon is an award-winning writer, author, and coach. Since leaving practice as a primary care physician due to burnout, she has worked to support physicians in achieving their personal and professional goals and to highlight the changes needed to reduce burnout, improve career satisfaction, and protect the bidirectional healing power of the patient-physician relationship.

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Yes! Send me my free ebook:

The Challenges Women Physicians Face: What’s Needed to Shift from Striving to Thriving.

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Diane W. Shannon, MD, MPH, ACC

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