Empowered lives have one thing in common. They all require change. As a life coach, I’ve helped clients make personal and professional changes for more than 15 years, and I’ve come to believe that change itself is a little bit like an earthquake. (Which most of us prefer to avoid.) Some shifts are little. Some are seismic. All of them shake you right to your core.
Think about the changes you’ve attempted to make throughout your life. Have yours stuck? If they haven’t, you’re not alone. Research shows us that by February 1st a whopping 80 percent of new year’s resolutions have been broken. While that statistic can feel a bit daunting, you don’t have to be part of the 80 percent.
Maybe you’re the one initiating change as you go for something you really want. (If so, you go girl!) Or perhaps you’re on the receiving end of an unwelcome and unwanted change. (If so, I’m sorry. That’s so hard.)
No matter how you got here, if you’re flailing around in the change zone trying to figure out how to make it through, I can help. (And don’t worry. There’s nothing wrong with you. You’re totally normal flailing around in there.) In our current episode of GrooveTV I’ll show you how to navigate change like a champ. Press PLAY already. Let’s kick some resolution booty, shall we?
Step 1 – Name your stage
There’s a process to change. The one I use with clients has four parts. Each has it’s own distinctive circumstances and set of emotions.
- Stage One: Status quo. Life is happening as it usually does.
- Stage Two: Disruption. A foreign element is introduced. Either you decide to make a change or a change is visited upon you.
- Stage Three: Adjustment. This is the messy part where you have to find your way through the disruption in order to arrive at a new status quo. Uncertainty thrives in this stage. This is also where most people quit.
- Stage Four: New Normal. This is where you arrive at your new status quo. If you do the whole process awake and with intention your new normal can be pretty amazing too.
Which stage are you in right now? The act of defining where you’re at can give you a sense of control. (It’s kinda like creating a little bit of certainty right in the face of all that uncertainty you’ve been feeling.)
The thing about feelings and change, is that every phase can feel pretty terrible. Even if the change you’re making is one you really want.
There’s this false notion that when you’re going for your dreams or when something good happens to you, you’re not supposed to feel difficult feelings. But that’s just not true.
If you’re in change you’re going to feel bad sometimes. That doesn’t mean the change you’re making is wrong. When your feelings come calling, open the door. They have messages for you. LISTEN. You CAN handle whatever you discover.
Okay, that was the hardest part. This next step feels great. (Thank goodness, right?)
Step 2 – Connect with your new normal.
Now it’s time to dream a little bit. What do you want your new normal to look like? I want you to develop a vision for what you want, along with emotional conviction around why you want it. (I know, back to those feelings again.)
You can have almost anything you want if you’re willing to work for it. (That’s the tricky part, of course. Working for it is not for the faint of heart.) You’re going to meet some rough times on the path to claim your dreams. When the going gets tough, the vision you hold for your new normal will fuel you, and your why will propel you forward.
Sounds pretty good, right? Let’s get you some. First, what do you envision for your new normal? (Get started with just one question, or answer them all.)
- Who are your people? Who do you love and who loves you back? Who do you work with? Who do you belong with?
- What is your work in the world? How do you contribute each day?
- What do your home look and feel like? How about your work environment?
- What does your financial life look like? Are you abundant?
- What do your daily routines look like? What are your top 3 habits?
- How do you feel? What are the 5 emotions you experience each day?
- Are you connected to yourself, and to something beyond yourself? Do you have a spiritual practice?
To get the why part we ask these ones.
- Who will benefit when you create your new normal?
- How will your new normal contribute to others?
- How will you living into your new normal serve a greater purpose or connect you with a higher calling?
- How will living in your new normal help you grow and evolve?
You can replace the uncertainty of change with bedrock certainty when you define your new normal and connect with your why. (I do it every day.) Give it a shot, and let me know how it goes.
Now, let’s talk action…
Step 3 – Focus on forward movement.
Most people don’t make changes because they’re more focused on what they have to give up than they are on what they have to gain.
Another uncomfortable part of change, is that it always involves giving something up. You can’t bring everything (or everyone) with you to your new normal. To get there you’re going to have to leave some things behind. There is no negotiation here. For every get there is a give, and that can be really difficult.
It’s normal to grieve the loss of whatever isn’t coming with you. (Even if what you’re leaving behind was mediocre or not really that good for you.) It hurts to say goodbye. But you CAN do it.
If you want to arrive happily at your new normal, you need to learn to manage your focus. Focus is a superpower. Your brain is like a computer. It pays attention to what you tell it matters. (Think of it like a giant Google that serves up whatever you search for.)
When you’re in the change zone there are two ways to focus. You can think about how things used to be (and be sad and stuck), or you can manage your focus and laser in on what you need to do to make your new normal a reality. (Which feels way better.) There’s a movement part that comes into play here too.
You behave your way into the life you want.
In other words, it’s time for you to get into action. Don’t worry. You don’t need gobs of time or a master plan. I just want you to take one little baby step toward your goals every day. Those little baby steps build on one another, and they create this magical thing called momentum.
Before you know it, you’ll find yourself smack dab in the middle of your very own new normal. And you’ll be a change master (who just happens to be living in the 20 percent). ☺
That’s it for the week. Remember that I never want you to blindly take my word for anything. Only you know what’s right for you. I just happen to have a few coaching tools that can help you get closer to that wisdom. Give this lesson’s advice a test drive in your life, and let me know how it goes. There are three ways for us to interact.
- Comment in the comments section below.
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- Email me if you have something more private you’d like to ask. My personal email is firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m the only one reading your messages, and it’s always me answering them.
My mission is your empowerment. That’s why I’m here. If you haven’t already joined my community, please do it by entering your email (www.kimberlyfulcher.com). Until we meet again, know that life is happening for you.
And you got this!
I am glad I started with how to navigate change. Its funny I have coached my team over and over around the change curve. However, the circunstancies are making me to make a change and I am clear that I need to make a change, thought there are so many things I do not want to give up, but I need/have to for my own well being.
I need to believe I can do it. I will answer the questions and start the adjustment process.
Thanks for your advise.
Rosa! I’m so sorry for my delayed reply. I somehow missed your message. I love using the change process too. It makes me feel a little bit more certain when dealing with uncertain things. 🙂
I’m not sure if you still need to make that change, but YES YOU CAN DO IT!!!
This blog and I are right here if you need support.
You’ve Got This!
Hi, your message was much needed today. I feel like I just cant get it right. In a job that I hate, would love to live my dream of owning my own dessert company. Its been a very rough week and has been like this for a while. The only thing that keeps my sanity is baking and cooking. I am an excellent baker just don’t know how to turn it into a viable business. I love what I do and it is truly the only thing that sustains me right now. Last year and this year has been and is a struggle. Lost my job last year of which I hated but needed the income and have been working but nothing really consistent or paying well. Been struggling financially for a while. Beyond frustrated and tired. Can’t seem to get my footing or what to do next.
Thanks for letting me vent.
I’m so sorry I somehow missed your comment. I know what it feels like to want to go for a dream. (This blog is part of mine.) Consider getting a side gig working at a bakery or a company that makes a profit from baking. Then LEARN. Keep baking and creating gorgeous confections while you do it. Keep a job to pay your bills while you figure your next steps out, and keep coming back here. You WILL find your way. (Also check out my blog How to overcome overwhelm. It might help.)
I’m glad you’re here. And you got this!
I am struggling with navigating how to find the live facebook video
I’m sorry! Technology is so amazing in that it allows us to connect with one another, but so frustrating when we can’t make it work the way we want, isn’t it? 🙂
To access the recorded FB Live videos, just go to my FB page and they will be pinned to the top of it. To join LIVE mark your calendar for 3PT every other Wednesday. Our next one will be April 5th.
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Much love my sister.
You Got This!
Once again, you have provided me with insight that I am living at this very moment. Took a new assignment -military- that I requested for with my focus on helping my organization while building my future.
Not realizing that the change would effect me in different areas of my life (i.e. Fitness, marriage, parenting, etc). The change will bring me to another phase of my career, but some days I feel as though I have given things up that I was comfortable with such as a working environment that I had been part of for the last 15 years. Many people applaud my boldness, but sometimes my happiness is not always there because of the change of environment.
You are right, let me re-visit my vision to focus on what it is I am desiring to have.
First – YOU GO GIRL! You are brave, and you are acting on your own behalf. You’re already ahead of most people. 🙂 A few additional questions/steps can help you set your new normal foundation. Give them a shot, and let me know how it goes.
1) What about your old normal do you miss? Are there parts of it that you can replicate in your new normal? (For example, if you used to love working out at our old gym, focus on finding a new gym and get back into your workout routine.) You might even meet some new friends. Speaking of friends…
2) Find your people. Isolation is a killer. Get involved in your community. Go to a class. Volunteer for something. ( I know it’s a little scary to show up to an event alone, but look what you’ve already done. You can do it!) And the super bonus is you’ll make friends with common interests. (I’m not sure if you’re in a relationship or want to be in one. This same advice holds true for romance.)
3) What do you enjoy? Add more of those things to you day on purpose. If your new place has a great view, drink your coffee in the morning enjoying it. Light candles or incense to add a little kick of cozy when you’re home. Use a lotion that smells amazing. Play music you love when you get ready for the day. Find little things that make you smile and start adding those into your day. You’ll be amazed at the happy this brings into your life.
I’m really glad you’re part of our community my sister, and I’m right here cheering you on.
You Got This!