journaling for steve white
January 9, 2023

Already Exhausted? 3 Ways to Refocus on Your Success in 2023

The past couple of years have contributed to everyone’s heightened state of fatigue. A pandemic, natural disasters, social unrest, and an evolving workplace will do that. The exhaustion that I’ve experienced is a cumulative one—not just weeks or months or even years, but a lifetime in the making.

Every day is the perfect day for a fresh start. 

Sure, the beginning of a year works for many of us—me included. In fact, if you’ve read my recent posts, you know that I love to start my January preparations in October!

My tendencies aside, there’s no rule against fresh starts any other time of year. Sometimes an event or interaction will take place and inspire you to chart a new course. It may even sustain you when you’re feeling overwhelmed or exhausted.

The past couple of years have contributed to everyone’s heightened state of fatigue. A pandemic, natural disasters, social unrest, and an evolving workplace will do that. The exhaustion that I’ve experienced is a cumulative one—not just weeks or months or even years, but a lifetime in the making. 

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It’s a mindset that plays a constant tune in my life. But what makes my exhaustion fade into the background are the interactions I have with people who’ve influenced me along my journey. These exchanges keep my why front and center: to create a table of prosperity where everyone can participate. Each person energized me in their own way and enabled me to push reset with the benefit of their insights.


Fresh starts have helped me dust myself off and get back into the game. They’ve brought me to a new level of readiness for my next challenge and fueled my ability to work through my exhaustion.

For Joe Trujillo, his fresh start began in July of 2021 on the day we met. 

Joe wasn’t on my calendar, and we didn’t have an appointment. Our life-changing interaction was prompted by the ring of my doorbell. Joe was delivering a package. For some reason when we exchanged hellos, we felt a friendly connection, which was soon followed by Joe asking me what I did for a living. When I explained where I worked and my career at Comcast, he listened with interest and thanked me for telling him a little about myself. Joe went on his way, hopped in the delivery truck, and drove to his next stop.

I had no idea what happened after that until Joe emailed me from within the company a few months later, telling me that he had applied for and landed a job at Comcast. He didn’t ask me to put a good word in for him; he did it all on his own. He thanked me for taking the time to chat on my front porch and asked if he could keep me updated on his progress. 

For fifteen months, he’s checked in with me regularly, and I’m delighted to report that Joe is swinging for the fences. There isn’t enough room in this post to list all of his accomplishments to date. 

As the top commission earner in his division, he’s been hand-picked for a coaching role to support onboarding employees. He’s also been elected chair of a professional development board where he’ll help shape a mentorship program in the company. 

Joe tells me that our chat last July was still the most impactful and pivotal moment of his life. I can’t tell you how humbling that is to hear. I don’t share that with you to boast but to impress upon you how you never know when a conversation or kind word can be what gives someone the energy or inspiration to see their life in a new light. 

It can be the reason for a fresh start. 

But wiping the slate clean isn’t only about external influences; you have to gather your strength to pivot from within. Consider three calls to action:

Don’t allow your circumstances to dictate your outlook.

Joe might have asked himself, “Is this where I want to be?” Our conversation could have been the tipping point that motivated him to apply for a promising new job. Joe didn’t allow his current situation to prevent him from asking and answering the question. The Light in the Heart author Roy T. Bennett shares a similar mindset in this quote: “Don’t be pushed around by the fears in your mind. Be led by the dreams in your heart.”

Listen to what your heart wants.

If your answer to the question above is also “no, I don’t want to be here,” then allow yourself to follow your heart. The way you work through your despair with a situation is to dream. Make your dreams as powerful as possible so they carry you through the dark days. Others might tell you that your expectations are misplaced or that you’re aiming too high. If you don’t believe in your dreams, no one else will. You have to suspend your disbelief—and the disbelief of others—so you can open your heart to the possibilities.  

What do you hope for, and do you let that hope strengthen your resolve? Imagining what you want awakens your mind and takes you to places that might not be possible in reality yet. It’s great mental practice until reality meets you in the middle.

Commit to the first step.

The human spirit is powerful. Rather than being complacent, recognize that you have a choice in everything you do. You can either: 1) ignore your heart and give up, or 2) follow your dreams and take the first step, then the next step, and then the next. 

What does choosing option one give you? Nothing! Get busy imagining your possibilities. Social innovator and award-winning author Valaida Fullwood has made it a regular practice to choose option two and indulge her imagination: “I have a habit of letting my imagination run away from me. It always comes back though…drenched with possibility.”  

Your heart doesn’t know what day of the year it is. If January comes and goes, don’t wait until next year to get inspired. Every day is the best day for new beginnings. Make your fresh start today. 

Live your why,

Steve

P.S. Want to get more out of your life and nurture your dreams? Consider starting a reading group with Uncompromising as the topicMy book discussion guide is perfect for leading individuals and groups alike through each chapter. Want to learn more? Check out my latest conversation with The Austin Agency.

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