Welcome back to rethinking 2020. Please do read the thoughts found within part 1 prior to reading this.
So if you are looking to find a new start in life, here are 6 crucial tips I wanted to share with you to help you transition through this time of change:
Usually, our emotional patterns are a direct reflection of what and how we are thinking. Because they are embodied, emotions can make things feel very real, but that does not mean that they are true. When you experience negative emotions, such as fear, it is worth asking yourself if what you are feeling is based on a thought related to: 1) an actual fact; 2) a limiting belief you picked up about a certain situation based on the past; or 3) a future projection. Just checking in with ourselves and assessing our feelings with curiosity (not pressure!) makes us step out of our emotional state and see things more objectively. Most times we find that our negative emotions are based on beliefs that come either from unpleasant past experiences or on (doomed) future outlooks, and not necessarily on our actual situation. Placing things in the perspective of the present opens the door to many possibilities and may help you see these limiting beliefs for what they really are, as processes of thought (or cognitive bias) that do not serve you nor determine how things will work out for you. From then, you are clearer to think creatively on strategies, solutions and brighter future outcomes.
Get your thoughts down on paper each day and examine them. What are the patterns? Are they mostly positive or negative? Are you choosing how you think and feel? Do you believe you can? Recognise your limiting beliefs on paper. This will also help you notice the critical voice in your head and that hold you back. Noticing this voice is the first step to controlling and shifting it (and what it says).
Rituals are known to scholars in anthropology and psychology as being helpful in assisting us when going through moments of transition. Ritual is both the vehicle for permanence (as it can be repeated) and also for change, as it opens up a space for the creation of the ‘new’. It aids us in letting go of the past with gratitude for what we’ve learnt, letting go of old habits, social ties, and old beliefs about the world. So, by creating ceremonial ‘goodbyes’ to the old life circumstance we can slowly remove the cues that trigger old patterns and ways of being, opening up to new prospects. In addition, when we face the uncertainty of changing times, a ritualized habit can give us a sense of stability and continuity. Ideally, choose a practice that makes you feel good, open and more engaged with life. It could be a morning meditation, or dancing to your favourite song, or walking in nature, or focusing on three things you are grateful for in your life just as it is. Whatever works for you. Just be sure it will make you feel good and that you repeat it. Doing that ritual everyday will give a sense of concrete reality and strength to your inner process.
Write yourself as the protagonist (the hero) of your own narrative. In most ‘hero’ stories we find ups and downs, conflicts and turnarounds (at least the most interesting ones!). In this exercise, write a mini autobiography recalling the transitions you’ve been through and relish your achievements, however small. Try to reframe each ending as the opening chapter for a new beginning. Explore how sometimes your weaknesses turned into strengths. And reflect on what you’ve learned with past mistakes. The ability to take on new perspectives is a powerful process of self-development, allowing us to mould our self-concept with more ease. So, enjoy the exercise and look at the bigger picture. Where will your story turn to next?
Savour the time of transition to look inward and ask yourself: What do I really want? What is really important to me? What are my core values? If possible, explain to your loved ones what you are going through and ask them to give you more space. Allow yourself the time to reform and reshape your journey.
They will deepen the experience and help you travel the path. Their job is to help you think clearly and confidently, stay in touch with your emotions and maximise your growth and learning. If you wish to have a conversation about my practice and how it can support you, you can book a phone appointment here.
I hope you’ve enjoyed these posts and that these tips will help you transition through the changes you are facing this year and next.
Be well and safe, and I’ll see you here soon!