6 Ways To Avoid The Hole In The Pavement

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Have you ever come across a sign that says ‘Wet paint don’t touch’? And what did you do? Yes probably exactly what I did. Touch it.

I remember that as a little boy I was told to never put my hand on the hot fireplace, nor my foot on the hot mower – and what did I do? Scream in pain.

Well as a child fails to recognize the signs, we as adults often take the same habits over and into adulthood.

So allow me to introduce you to the hole in the pavement as Portia Nelson so eloquently presents to us…

In her essay A Way Out, Portia Nelson writes, ‘I walk down the street. There’s a hole in the pavement and I fall in. I’m lost; it isn’t my fault. It takes forever to get out. I walk down the street again. There’s a hole in the pavement but I pretend I don’t see it, so I fall in again. I can’t believe I’m in the same place; still, it isn’t my fault. I walk down the street again. There’s a hole in the pavement. I see it, but I still fall in – it’s a habit. But now my eyes are open and I know where I am. It is my fault. I get out immediately. I walk down the street. There’s a hole in the pavement. I walk around it. Finally, I walk down a different street!’

So let’s take a closer look at how you can deal with the holes in the pavement that you face in your life.

1. Don’t Fall In The Hole

Seems pretty obvious – but Portia adds two words to the initial event of falling in holes – ‘I’m lost.’

Now does she mean that because I’m in a hole I’m lost, or was I lost before I ended up in the hole?

Earlier in my life I was convinced that I had to fall in holes to learn the lesson. But as wisdom has prevailed throughout the passing years I have discovered that at times it is far better to talk to others who have fallen in holes – and through following their instructions there are some holes that I can avoid – the power of mentors.

2. Recognise There Is A Hole

Some people walk through life totally oblivious to the fact that holes exist.

But the fact is that we don’t live in a perfect world, and that we must recognize that there are holes.

Pretending that you don’t see it will not protect you from falling down yet another hole. See the hole for what it is. Name it. Recognize it.

3. Take Responsibility

Some people don’t like this word.

I recall writing a guest post about this very subject, and the negative reaction by half of my readers was amazing when I said that we needed to take responsibility for our life.

Continuing to declare that a mistake is not your fault is to walk as a blind person throughout your life.

If you can pronounce ‘It is my fault’, then you have just positioned yourself to do something constructive about the situation within which you find yourself.

4. Change Your Habits

The only way you can stop falling down the same hole is by changing your habits.

The experts tell us that it can take up to 30 days of repeated action to change a habit.

Don’t try to change a whole bunch of habits at once. Choose one. Change that and next month start to work on habit number two.

5. Walk Around The Hole

Just because there is a hole in the pavement you don’t have to fall in.

Walk around it. Avoid it. Decide that the hole is not your destiny.

Make the decision that as from this day you will not be a hole dweller, but rather a pavement walker.

6. Take A Different Route

If your route seems to constantly present you with holes, then maybe its time to take a totally different route.

There are many roads that lead to success – so discover yours.

This takes courage, but as Stephen Covey states, that ‘The enemy of the ‘best’ is often the ‘good’,’

Treat each day as a new adventure, and who knows where you will end up.

Here’s a question for you to discuss: What holes, that you have fallen down in the past, are you now going to walk around?

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