We all know that change is inevitable and yet we resist it with all our might, and that costs us a lot of energy and pain. The thing with change is that we know what we give up but we can’t be certain what we will receive in return. We can have a good guess, we can be very intentional in our process but we don’t have any guarantees about the result. If we can make friends with the idea that change is inevitable and that resistance is futile, we can move into a place of allowing, trust and flow.
These steps have helped me shift my perspective:
1. Control. A good place to start is to consider, what we can control and what is out of our control. The weather is out of our control but how we prepare and respond to it is within our control. We can be grumpy about the rain or we can be glad the plants get watered.
2. Gather evidence. Think of those times when you surrendered to change. How much suffering did you hold on to until you stopped resisting and went along a different path? Find as many examples as you can. Big and small, old and new, important and flimsy.
3. Listen. Start tuning into your inner voice. This might take some time because your self-talk and your inner voice are two different entities. Your self-talk is your ego, your inner voice is your soul, your essence, your authentic you. Think of a time where you KNEW you should have done something but you ignored that quiet voice and then regretted it afterwards because it was right.
4. Get out ahead of it! We’ve all been there: we resisted change until change pushed us over the edge. And it was a bumpy and scary ride. If you don’t enjoy that sort of scenario, start recognising what needs to change and get out ahead of it. If you’re not sure of how to go about it, work with a coach to guide you along the way.
Feel free to share in the comments any experience described above. When did change knock you over? Do you fight what you can’t control? When did you exclaim “why didn’t I do this earlier?”
Curious about an anecdote from my life of when I realised what was holding me back when I was procrastinating an assignment? In this video I share a story of when two of the above strategies helped me pass an assessment I had been putting off for far too long.
Have you ever had a conversation that lead you to see an issue in a different light? What changed? Your perception of it.
Our imagination is a powerful tool that we can use for better and for worse. Biologically we have a negativity bias to keep us safe; it’s more important for our survival in the wild to notice the threat than it is to carelessly enjoy the beauty around us. Alas, in our rather unnatural way of life these days, we are relatively safe from being eaten by predators or struck by lightning. We are in the empowering position to focus our attention towards thriving rather than on mere surviving. And this focus starts with how we interpret our world, it’s a question of what filter do we want to use? We all have empowering beliefs and limiting beliefs. We may be aware of some but most of our beliefs about our world are programmes that run in the depths of our unconscious mind. We can ask specific questions to bring those beliefs to light which is work that a coach specialises in.
But you can start with these three steps on your own:
1. Gratitude. Intentionally change your focus from what causes your suffering to what you appreciate in your world. The practice of gratitude and appreciation is a powerful tool for creating positive change.
2. Contrast. Know what you don’t want to know what you do want. If you know what you don’t want you can make choices that support what you do want instead.
3. Believe. Let your imagination free reign and allow yourself to believe that there actually is another way. Having an open mind will give you many more possible options to consider.
Tell me in the comments, what are you grateful for, what contrast has shown you what you prefer, what do you believe is possible for you?
And then have a look at this video to find out how those three steps have helped me along the way:
Where I am, it is autumn. The leaves are changing colour, the trees are letting go, the weather is changing every few minutes. Autumn is showing us change in all its beauty and possibility.
We often think of change as being scary as it means venturing into the unknown or it could involve picking up a long-lost thread apprehensive of what we might find.
But think of something that you decided to change in your life, big or small, recent or long ago. Was it for the better or for the worse? Either way, was it worth it in the end? I would hope to think it was!
If we reframe change as opportunity, exploration, curiosity, a breath of fresh air, out with the old and in with the new, change takes on a much more exciting and positive nature.
If we’re finding ourselves in a situation we’re not happy in, we have three options:
1. Stay and continue to suffer
2. Stay and do something differently to improve the situation
3. Leave and try something new
Where are you finding yourself in a situation that you would like to see a change?
What scenario came up when you thought about a change you’ve experienced in the past?
Share with us in the comments! It would be fascinating to see if there are similarities or a common thread!
And after posting your comment, you may want to hear one of my stories of change, specifically how I considered the above three options when choosing how to move forwards.