When you take two steps back, you might feel like a failure. You might feel like you’ve let yourself down. You might feel embarrassed about your progress.
However, when you take two steps back you should actually be proud of yourself. You should be happy you only lost a few paces. Most people who take two steps back throw up their hands and give up on themselves. Most people go from two steps back to ten steps back in an instant because they toss all their hard work away, assuming they don’t have what it takes to reach their end goal.
If you’re still trying, if you’re still putting effort into your goal, then you should be proud of your persistence, your dedication, your relentlessness.
Taking two steps back isn’t the end of the world. Your success is going to fluctuate over time. There are going to be moments when you are ahead of schedule and moments when you fall behind schedule. There are going to be moments when you surprise yourself by how much you’ve accomplished and moments when you are disappointed with yourself over how little you’ve accomplished.
During those small moments of success, you can’t get too cocky — and during those small moments of disappointment, you can’t be too hard on yourself.
It doesn’t matter how talented or motivated you are, because you aren’t going to accomplish your biggest dreams overnight. You’re going to have to work hard to see results. Even when you feel like you should have seen results by now and aren’t able to, that doesn’t mean you should stop trying. That doesn’t mean you aren’t going to get there eventually.
You have to have faith in yourself, even when it feels like all of your effort has been useless. You have to keep your motivation high, even when it feels like trying isn’t going to get you anywhere so you might as well give up.
Making slow, gradual progress is better than making no progress. Spending years working toward a goal is better than giving up on that goal completely.
When you take two steps back, it’s natural to start questioning yourself, to start wondering whether you have been wasting your time, to start thinking you might never reach your destination. But you have to remember, taking two steps back doesn’t mean you’ve failed. It doesn’t mean this is the end of the road for you.
You can decide a tiny setback isn’t going to convince you to quit. You can decide you do have what it takes to succeed. You can decide to keep going until you land where you were aiming all along.
You have to remember, just because it doesn’t look like your hard work has been paying off, that doesn’t mean it’s true. Even though you might not see a noticeable change, you’ve been growing. You’ve been learning. You could be tiptoeing toward your future without even realizing it.
As long as you are still trying, you aren’t a failure. You’re a work in progress.