Up, next, forward...is not always a sign of "better" and can be a trick of personal development to assume the next thing is always the better thing. Right now is what you've got and sometimes you need to stay a while, pull up a chair, and read.
Tools of typology are for the now, not about a shortcut to the next level. The same goes for coaching...articles...a degree. Everything is stratified, everything flows into each other. The culmination is often what matters. Rarely do we have singular moments that change our lives.
Especially with tools like the Graves model, it is very alluring to assume that the top, or our perception of the top, is the best. But like in a video game, if you rush to the final boss unprepared you will fall flat on your face.
Do the work you have to do here and now. There is no shame in where you are.
Comparison is helpful in the micro. Looking at your people around you, your community, your competitors can help you go grow individually and together. Comparison to those at the "next stage" is arresting.
Be present and real about the stakes you're in to soak in all the lessons.
That doesn't mean you shouldn't grow but sometimes our urgency to grow can create artificial markers and dreams that don't resonate with our identity. We rush to this new place and think "damn, this isn't what I wanted" and attempt to rush back, disentangle, or recalibrate when it's already too late.
It's okay to take your time. Figure it out and get it right. And what I mean by "right" is right for you. Not what someone else expects, not where some model says you should be because all you have is right now.
Goals are tools to manage today. What you want your life to look like depends on what you do today. The joy you experience today depends on what you do today.
There's a lot of life to live and a lot of days to worry. Don't let today be one of them.
I recently posted an episode of the podcast about desperation, which feels relevant as an idea that can keep us from being present or may try to force us into the future sooner than we're ready.