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By Dr. Clementine Msengi

Challenges are an inevitable part of life. Facing them with a tried-and-true approach can mean the difference between growth and stagnation. These five simple steps can help individuals, groups, and organizations face challenges with confidence and find PEACE in the process.

P: Pause and reflect.
List the current challenges that you or your organization are facing. Take time to diagnose, assess, and address what’s going on/how you got to this spot/place in life etc. What tools and resources are already at your disposal for addressing the problem? Consider consulting professionals, if needed. Then research the most effective solutions and implement steps, goals, and assessment tools.  

The way we deal with challenges reflects our personalities, belief systems, priorities, life purpose, and position of power. Evaluate how other individuals and organizations have resolved similar challenges. We learn from others when take time to evaluate multiple solutions.

E: Examine your options. Evaluate the pros and cons of the best possible solutions based on the data at your disposal. Then methodically determine a plan of action within your reach, based on factors you can evaluate and control. As you walk through this process, embrace change. Change is an expected and necessary part of life. Accepting change as a fact of life allows us to build contingency plans and prepare for the future. Preparing for uncertainty helps alleviate fear and creates anticipation.

A: Activate a well-thought-out plan. Implement the steps of your plan and be prepared to adjust as the situation changes.Every good plan leaves room for options and contingencies.Remember, even tiny steps move us forward. If you feel stuck, remember that feelings are only an emotion. Time rolls on. Indecision is a decision; we are never really ‘stuck.’ Look at the options in front of you and resolve to take one small step in a positive direction. Ask yourself three questions: What are you willing to stop doing that will move you in a positive direction? What are you willing to start doing that will move you in a positive direction. And What is the smallest single step you can take into a new, positive direction?

C: Stay connected with established support networks, create new partnerships, and collaborate with community contacts to propel you toward the future. No one lives successfully in this world as inland. Connection with support networks, creation of new partnerships, and collaboration with new contacts propels us toward a strong future. We find comfort and solutions when others walk beside us. Collaboration expands our knowledge and combined wisdom as we search for solutions and forge together into the future.

E: Establish tools to monitor and celebrate individual and corporate progress and health. Iterate, assess, and adjust plans and policies as needed. Evaluate the impact of policies and practices on personnel, clients, and businesses outcomes. How do outcomes and existing strategies impact personal and corporate relationships, morale, and client and organizational needs? Gauge the physical, emotional, and spiritual state of your employees. What is their greatest need? How can your organization better monitor employee morale and ensure that they recognize those who make your business work? How can you improve this process?  

If you are a leader, how do you monitor the physical and mental health of those who help carry out your mission? Promote a healthy workplace environment. For instance, provide opportunities for on-the-job exercise, such as yoga, walking, or deskercise. Make healthy snack choices available. Encourage mental health by providing access to mental health resources and providing regular staff training. Consider employing a workplace chaplain. And be open to suggestions for ways to nourish those within your corporate family.

For more information on finding inner peace, check my recent blog.

Success and peace,

Dr. Clem

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