Everyday seafarers face challenges, which is an important part of growing and developing as a person, as the more we can test our limits and capabilities, the more we will learn about ourselves.
tarting a new challenge can be frightening, and the fear of failure can be too much to bear. In these cases, anyone could avoid the challenge altogether and carry on down the same path they were on, making some excuse so that they can stay in the comfort zone. However, to lead an authentic life, we need to take on new challenges that stretch us and give us more opportunities to be ourselves. That does not mean that the authentic person does not feel the same fear; rather, they are simply more willing to face their fear.
Only after we overcome struggles then it becomes clear that success can come as a direct result. In fact, dealing with obstacles of varying degrees and urgency is a requirement to succeed in both life and business. Once we get through enough, we realize that even the worst-case scenario can have a positive solution. But how can we achieve such a skillset?
#1 Embrace the challenges
Attempting to do anything hard comes with challenges, so we need to embrace them. If we look at obstacles as opportunities to turn problems into progress, we increase our chances of success. Confronting obstacles forces us to assess the situation with new eyes and innovate creative solutions, thus ending up wiser with new skills and experiences.
#2 Change perspective
Instead of avoiding them, we should view obstacles as opportunities to improve. A trip overseas is of course a legit reason to feel fear, however by thinking that by the end of it, the seafarer will eventually be more experienced and more skilled, gives a whole new perspective. In fact, panic and fear in the face of struggle can feel normal, as even when we fail once, we can easily fall into the trap of believing we will always fail. However, by separating the thoughts that cause fear from those creating solutions, seafarers can gain greater control over handling problems.
#3 Take a risk
Anxiety and fear run our lives. We always fear about what will happen, or how much money we have, but winner is a risk-taker. They know that nothing in life comes without a price and they are willing to pay that price. Namely, they know that in order to get something, they need to embark on paths unknown. Nevertheless, taking a risk does not mean being reckless, especially in jobs as dangerous as seafaring. A risk should always be calculated and you should always have a fallback plan. Jumping out of a plane without a parachute is not heroic.
#4 Be humble and transparent
When you nurture transparent and honest relationships, you end up with more people willing to help you when you need it. It can be hard to admit when times are tough, but if you try to make the situation not seem as bad as it is, people are much less likely to step up and help.
Living in a sense of community, especially onboard a ship is vital for every seafarer. Problems, either personal or job-related, will always be present, and everyone needs someone to talk to and share their problems. Even if there is not a solution on sight, just talking about what bothers you can really be a relief.
#5 Focus on improvements
We need to train our brain to think of our response to a given problem as an improvement, rather than a blind reaction. For example, if the engine presents a problem, freaking about it will not solve anything. Instead, by staying calm you will eventually find the solution. This will also come in handy in the future, as during a potential similar incident you will be more experienced, and more prepared, knowing very well what to do, or even anticipate a problem and fix it proactively.
#6 Set priorities
No one cannot do everything. When we try to do everything, we end up finishing nothing. For this reason we need to focus and set priorities. By finding what are the things that matter to the most and which things we want to work on first, we can work on only a limited set of goals at a time, adding new ones only when we have accomplished or created habits that automate the process.
#7 Don’t let failure stop you
As they say, it does not matter how many times you fall, it is the times you up the matters. Failures cannot be avoided in life, either in our personal lives, or in our jobs. So if you fail, get up and try again. Life is a long journey, and mistakes are only lessons learned that lead us to success.