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There is really no part of life where challenges don’t exist. We are constantly overcoming demanding situations. And although the size of the challenge may change, we should come to expect that things are not always easy.

Challenges are a part of life! It’s no different when you are working toward building new, positive habits. There will be setbacks and stumbling blocks to face. The trick will be to learn how to overcome them and keep moving forward. One of the first things you can do when you encounter a situation where establishing your new habit may be challenged, is evaluate the situation. Ask yourself a series of questions so that you understand the “why” of the stumbling block. Questions like “What is the challenge?” Why has it become a challenge as it relates to the habit I’m trying to form? What time of day did it happen? All of these questions will yield answers that will help you understand your setbacks and get you back on the right track. Journaling or writing down your questions and answers will help you analyze the information you come up with, so that you can make a plan to move forward.

After you have gathered your information about how and why you slipped up, you can design ways to overcome those stumbling blocks and even foresee some that may happen in the future. For example, maybe you have a goal to get healthier. You’ve been eating right and exercising at least 5 days a week. In the first few weeks you lost several pounds, which motivated you to stay focused. But, for the last two weeks you haven’t lost any more weight. You start to feel stagnant and feel tempted to give up because you’re no longer seeing results. This is a stumbling block that can be avoided if it’s planned for. Weight loss plateaus are common, so if you expected it ahead of time, you would be able to focus more on the long-term goal- resisting temptation to give up too soon.

Thinking about the situations you may be in ahead of time and accounting for them is really the key to learning how to overcome your stumbling blocks. Lastly, make a resolve to never give up. The truth is that stumbling blocks are a part of life, no matter who you are. It’s how we deal with the challenges that define us. If you don’t give up on attempting to better yourself by forming good habits, you will become a person who lives life to the fullest.


Burnout recovery specialist, intuitive, and physician Dr. Veronica Anderson teaches high-performing professional women how to make successful career, health, and life transformations by overcoming challenges and developing resilience. She is the author of three bestselling books and splits her time between Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and Harlem, New York City, with her husband and two dogs, Artemis and Apollo.