As a Transformational Life Coach, who works with women in their mid-life, one of the key questions I am often asked by my clients is, “how do I make a life change when I’m scared!”
I know that this question has been going round and round in their heads for a very long time, long before they had the courage to make that first appointment with me which would have taken courage to do. I notice how troubled their faces look when they ask me this question? Are they waiting for an answer or is it a rhetorical question.
Deep down they probably already know the answer to the question, they FEEL the fear of change in the body. The very thought of it evokes all sorts of sensations that feel so uncomfortable for them. I noice the expression on their faces and their body language speaks to me as they whisper the question to me…. they wring their hands, they narrow their eye brows, or breathe out a heavy sigh of frustration and angst.
One wise spiritual teacher, Ekhart Tolle, once taught me that we are faced with 3 choices when we are deeply unhappy with a situation :
- Move On
We often try to change everything around us and even the people around us if we can before we realise the true answer, which is that change only really happens inside ourselves. We can ACCEPT a situation for so long and hope that we will one day be content with that choice, we can CHANGE our attitude towards it or the circumstances only so many times in the chance that this will be enough to make us happy but sometimes we simply have to have the courage to MOVE ON.
“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”
Some people love change, it is their nature to relish and enjoy change. They thrive on variety and it gives them a buzz and a sense of control and purpose in their life. For many others, it is a terrifying experience.
As part of my One To One Coaching Programme, I sometimes offer my clients a simple and very effective Behavioural Assessment to analyse and discuss their own styles of behaviour and attitudes to life. This is hugely helpful to both, my client and to me in attempting to explain why some people really struggle with making changes in their life, despite the fact their life feels so stuck and painful staying where they are right now whist other thrive on it. There is of course, an element of nature and nurture too. If you grew up in a family where your parents embraced change and moved though it relatively smoothly, then you will have more confidence to do the same despite the fact that by nature it is very scary for you.
The Behavioural Assessment I use is DISC and the diagramme below gives a brief outline of the 4 key types:
D = Dominance
I = Influence
S = Steadiness
C = Compliance
How does each of these mange change?
Dominance types – love change and thrive on it, encouraging others to join them. They work at a very fast pace and implement change quickly and sometimes too hastily without considering how it might affect others.
Influencer types can handle change more easily as long as they do it with other people around them and have fun with it.
Steadiness types find change extremely hard and need time to adjust and settle in. They also have a great consideration for others and look after everyone else before themselves during change which can affect their own health and wellbeing in the long term.
Compliant types will manage change well as long as they are able to plan it well, are given the right resources and have time to get organised with it. They also need more evidence for change and a good purpose for it.
Take a look at the image above and see which of the key characteristics fit you best. Get in Touch with me if you would like to do this 7 minute simple and easy Online Profile Test. You receive your results immediately after you have completed it and the full report is easy to read and understand and gives you great insight into yourself.
7 Steps To Making A Life Change
1. Acknowledge that this change is necessary
This is the biggest step in this uncomfortable process. Once you have declared this to yourself and are 100% sure that staying in the situation is simply not an option as it will destroy you and your life, you are likely to make slow an steady progress and deal with whatever is involved.
2. Write down you thoughts in a journal without any judgement
I cannot stress enough how absolutely powerful it is to write down your thoughts on a piece of paper. After you’ve down, you can rip it up or burn or chuck in the bin, but writing things down that are circling around in your head slows it all down and brings you clarity. Clarity is a process and your thoughts need to go through that muddled process.
3. Talk to someone who is impartial to your situation
We all have a close friend or confidant. Someone we trust with our lives to be completely open and vulnerable with out our thoughts and feelings. This is the time to reach out to that person and talk about what is really going on for you. Talking is vibration. You hear yourself speaking back (not just your friend) and your subconscious mind hears your pain and your desires and will also start to look for ways of helping you. We forget that this is the job of the mind.
4. Look after yourself well during this time
Make sure that you are eating healthily, sleeping well, taking time-out for yourself for exercise and rest.
5. Surround yourself with positivity, friends, family, work colleagues
Be very discerning and mindful about who you are surrounding yourself with, stay away from people and things that deplete your energy and be around those that boost and keep your energy levels high and stable.
6. Contact a Coach/therapist to help you every step of the way
Invest in having a few sessions with a Therapist or Life Coach that you feel drawn to and feel can really help you through the difficult emotions and fears that come up for you whilst you are choosing to make this change in yourself and in your life.
7. Be kind to yourself and go at the pace you need to go
I work with many women who really struggle with making change and I encourage them to always work at their own pace, take baby steps as long as they feel that they are going in the direction that they want to. Do not compare yourself to others, know yourself and understand your needs and what works best for you. We all have strengths in different areas and we need to realise that others may struggle too and have weaknesses in different ways. So understanding yourself and what works best for you is being kind to yourself.
Where do I begin?
Most people who desire change in their life find it hard to identify the starting point. The place to really make a START is to find out WHAT IS MOST IMPORTANT TO YOU right now in your life. I use a powerful Transformational Process that helps you to do just that. THE 2 SESSION INSIGHT PROGRAMME will give you the 100% clarity on your top priorities in your life right now to put your time, energy and focus on. Once you have this, you will feel motivated, energised and have a deeper sense of purpose as to what you need to do and how to move forward.
Schedule a complimentary call with me to have an informal chat to see how I can best help you to make the change you need now to live a more joyful and purposeful life.