Are you ready to complete the 7 1/2 Step Process? Yes, No or Maybe? Can you do it?
In Part I of the ReInvention process ( previous article at Your Tango) … we examined the first three steps of the process of change. The entire process is 7 ½ steps. This article will review the next four steps and then the final ½ step will be explored in it’s own separate discussion.
Why wait for the ½ Step? Because it’s the most difficult of all, even though it is the smallest number (1/2). Funny, huh?
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So, before I share the next four steps, let’s review:
Step One: Stop doing what you no longer wish to be doing.
Step Two: Start doing what you do want to be doing.
Step Three: Never, ever, ever, ever let anyone tell you what you can or cannot do.
I hope you have taken the time to complete these steps and are on your way. So, let’s continue with the process. Are you ready? Do you truly commit to make some huge changes in your life? It could be your career, your love life, your friendships, your appearance, where you live … whatever you declare to do differently. While it takes courage to make a big change, it is also incredibly exhilarating.
Okay, Step Four: Develop a MANTRA to keep you focused.
What is a mantra? It’s something you say to yourself, internally, or even out loud to reassure, give you confidence, create direction and focus. You’ve probably said it to yourself forever and always, but might not realize that’s what it is. For example, I have always reassured myself with the phrase, “all is well.” It’s automatic. I didn’t realize that it is a mantra for me. Now, I know. Other things I say are: “Aw, what the heck, do it anyhow.” This one especially works when I’m afraid to try something new and different. I use it to push myself forward. Another one is: “I am just fine now.” And “I am amazing.”
So, what mantra(s) can you develop that you default to automatically when you need those boosts in spirit, courage, etc? Take it on.
Step Five: Have a plan for UNCERTAINTY.
Change always creates a sense of uncertainty. You’re on a path and often don’t know where that leads. It’s never a direct road; it often veers off to one direction or another and takes you places you don’t expect to be. Furthermore, change is never linear. It’s organic and developmental. You think you’re headed here and you end up there.
Example: I knew I was moving to NYC at age 60 for a new adventure. I did and it was/ is awesome. However, I didn’t know that part of that change would be Breast Cancer. Here I was far from family in a new place. But, cancer brought me to even more change and direction.
So, how have you dealt with Uncertainty at other times in your life? What worked? Was it asking friends for support, was it prayer, was it meditation, was it determination? What works for you?
Step Six: Celebrate every WIN along the way and make the whole process FUN.
Change can sometimes seem slow and tough, like walking through molasses. You sometimes feel stuck and like you’re just not making any progress. You are, but it might not feel like it. It’s important to stop when you accomplish ANYTHING .. and celebrate. If you make a new contact on the road, if you apply for a new opportunity, if you lose a couple of pounds … celebrate. Celebration and FUN are important as a way to continue to motivate you towards whatever is next.
How do you like to celebrate? A nice meal out, a Broadway show, drinks with friends, a little weekend getaway, a new outfit? Take on rewarding yourself. AND, make sure it’s FUN.
Step Seven: Be Flexible, Unattached and NEVER GIVE UP.
As I said above in uncertainty, change is never a straight path. You might swerve all over the road. You might find you are going towards point A and end up at point B. It’s okay. Point B might be better. Be flexible. Go with the flow.
The Buddhists have a philosophy of non-attachment. It’s all about accepting things for what they are, even if not as planned. Give up attachment to HOW things should be and accept that they will be as they are.
And, of course, knowing that change can take a long time and be challenging … be committed and never give up.
So, how do you handle flexibility and non-attachment? Are you someone who can stay committed and never give up until you get to where you want to be?
So now you have 7 Steps (of a 7 ½ step process) to going beyond the status quo – to reinventing your life. In my next article, I’ll write about the ½ step. Make sure you watch for that.
For now, happy adventuring and changing. It will be awesome.
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