Sunday, February 22, 2015

What the H*** is Transition?

A lot of people seem to be doing it, but what the H*** does "Transition" mean?
According to the dictionary, the simple meaning is  “a change from one state or condition to another.” 
  • Like from being single to being married.  Or being married back to being single again.
  • Like being employed to being unemployed.
  • And then from working for one client (usually a boss) to working for several or many (self-employed).
  • From being unaware to suddenly very aware. 

In fact, a new awareness often triggers a transition.  While we are always changing and morphing almost every day, there are definitely MAJOR transitions like the ones I’m describing.

Transitions cannot be avoided and are life’s hugest learning opportunities. But, because they take you out of your comfort zone, they also make you nervous, fearful and uncertain.  However, with certain tools, you can be soothed and learn new profitable and passionate ways to live your life, and it's important that you have some tools because it won't be your last change.  Here are some tips:

1)    If you wonder if you’re facing a transition, I can tell you that almost all transitions begin with something going wrong – meaning something happens that takes you out of what has become your previously normal way of living.  

2)    It is not the end of the world – in fact, think of it as the beginning of a new and better way of life.  All endings contain the seeds of new beginnings.

3)    Focus on what might be possible, rather than what you have left behind. Give some thought to what you might want to create in a different future.  It will make you feel more empowered.

4)    Get clarity about what would fulfill your next stage.  Most people cannot do it alone – you just don’t have the perspective.  Get professional help. Somewhere.  This is not just because this is what I do – whether it is me or a Fired Up group or a career counselor or coach you are drawn to or a class or workshop – do not rely on yourself.  I have a coach because I need the same perspective. You can only think with your own thoughts – you need someone else’s.

5)    Get support. Find others who are also in, a transition.  Sometimes it becomes difficult to relate to your present friends and associates who are NOT facing your situation.  (This is the primary reason Stephanie Rose and I started “Women in Transition” – to give a place for women to have a place to meet other women and share.)  Being with others like you makes you feel less alone or crazy and helps you share resources.

Finally, give yourself time. All transitions take time and we are often so uncomfortable we just want to rush through it, taking an inappropriate job, picking an unfulfilling partner, and taking actions that make our situation more complicated.

Relax, take it easy, get support.  All is well.  You just need some time to bloom.

Friday, February 13, 2015

The Best Kind of Valentine

For many people, Valentine’s is a tough day.   If you don’t have a partner right now, you may feel lonely and like everyone in the world is in love except you.  If you have a partner, you may feel they don’t love you enough, or the right way, or they aren’t giving you the sentiment you desire.  (Some partners wish they could forget the day entirely except they are harassed into acknowledging it – my husband included.)

Valentine’s Day can be a loser, but all this love is dependent on “GETTING LOVE”… from other people in order to FEEL loved.  But, what if feeling loved, nurtured and taken care of was not dependent on anyone else? What if you could do it yourself?                   

You can.  It’s called SELF LOVE, and that is the best kind – at least the most reliable kind – of Valentine love, and there is no better holiday to practice it than on this one. What might that look like?  Here’s 5 steps on creating a day filled with love:

  1. Start the day with a gratitude list of anything (absolutely anything) good that has happened to you in the past 24 hours.  Feel your heart open and love pour out the more grateful you are.  Gratitude is the foundation for all abundance; it’s a good practice.
  2. Give yourself a total day off from your critical inner voice. Protect that fragile inner part of yourself that carries your greatest passions and hopes – and greatest fears.  Talk gently and kindly to yourself all day and feel the wellspring of good that opens up for you.
  3. Do something passionate. Endorphins, here you come!  Self-Love is about connecting to yourself – what you love and desire. Most of our time is spent on "getting stuff done."  This is a great day to take a painting class, ride your bike, go to Zumba, get a massage or anything that nurtures your true nature.  It’s important to get back in touch with who you really are and what you really want. It is the source of all your success and happiness.
  4. Do something for someone less fortunate.  Some of us spend way too much time focusing on what we don’t have, comparing ourselves with others, and bemoaning our fate. A few hours working with a homeless person, volunteering for at risk kids, or getting help for someone with an addiction problem or anything like that can change your entire perspective very quickly.  Suddenly, life is not so bad, your problems not so big and your heart is filled with gratitude and love.  Service to others is a high form of love to all.
  5. Get Support.   Why would you send yourself out in the world alone? It’s YOUR responsibility to make notes of those who love you and make you feel good about yourself and to then SPEND TIME with them.  DO NOT spend time with anyone who echoes those critical voices! Join activity groups, special interest groups, networking organizations, masterminds and any form of support. They will bolster you and you won't feel so alone.

So why is a success coach talking about loving yourself on Valentine’s Day?  If you look at the 5 steps above and applied them to your career or business, I think you can see it could have a dramatically positive impact.

But, for now, look at it as a recipe for a wonderful Valentine’s Day filled with self-love and good feelings - with or without a partner!   

Happy Valentine's!!