Life is a journey, there are stops along the way, there are crossroads, side roads, detours and dead-ends. There are mountains to climb, valleys of despair, wildernesses and open roads. Sometimes we have it all mapped out, sometimes we are reading the map upside down, inside out or back to front. Other times we veer off the map completely.
We have all been in these places in our life journey so far and as a coach I think it is helpful to understand that change is constant. It is the ebb and flow of events and whether you enjoy it or not, you can expect that something in your life will change. If we can remember that then how we process our thoughts during the transition can help bring some predictability to the unpredictable.
When change occurs you need to take some action, as opposed to allowing things to happen on their own and that is called transition. That said, I do think that not making a decision about something is an decision. You may need to move on or let go of someone or something; whether it is an old behaviour, limiting belief, pattern or a part of your identity or values system that no longer serves you.
It can be confusing, but, not knowing is part of the process. Before you can align and anchor yourself to something new you must go through a period of not knowing. It's a bit like coming into a patch of fog - you might know you are moving forward but you don't know where you are going. Then you will reach the other side and suddenly the path becomes clear once again.
Questions to ask when facing change
It is during this period of confusion where your values and experience become so important. Firstly consider your values and how they can help you make a decision on which route to take. Remember your values are the internal compass you have to keep you on your path. So whether you are going through (or have been through) change in your personal life or your professional life here are 10 powerful questions to ask yourself as you transition through. (Ask yourself in the second person ideally)
- If you were going to live your life fully in line with your values, what is the first change you would make?
- How does this change align with your values?
- What other areas of your life might be affected by this change?
- Name someone who has done what you want to do. What would ________ do if they were in your position?
- Which decision moves you closest to your values?
- If you could ONLY change ONE THING in your life, what would it be?
- What is out of harmony and how do you restore it?
- What's one change you could make that would give you more peace & calm?
- What are your top 5 priorities in life as you now understand them?
- What are you most concerned about, regarding this change?
Once answered I would encourage you to draw upon your past experiences of change. This is so you can view the situation with a perspective altered by time and distance. You can see it without judgement, for what it was rather than for how you wished it had been. Every time you review it broadens your perspective and provides you with wisdom for the present situation.
Consider this reflection a pit-stop on your journey to refresh, refuel and re-energise. A picnic for the soul if you will. When you set off again you will be safe in the knowledge that you are moving in the right direction for you.