Being in your current role feels awful, monotonous, unfulfilling. You don’t feel valued, acknowledged, respected challenged or inspired. Or maybe it’s not ‘awful’, and that’s part of the problem. It’s just long passed its expiry date, boring, comfortable, and you can do it with your eyes closed. But you don’t quite ‘hate it enough’ to leave yet’.
So you’re still here. The same place you’ve always been. Because the next your next role/career has to be the right one.
You don’t want to make the wrong decision. You can’t be sure it’s the right decision. You need to be certain it’s the right decision. So you don’t make one, and you stay where you are.
But what if there were no wrong decisions, just decisions?
And the freedom to make a different and more informed decision, with each decision you make; taking with you everything you have learned about yourself and what you want, at each step.
Along the way there's also choices.
Choosing to see what else it out there. Choosing to try things, research and have conversations.
Choosing to apply anyway, and knowing you gain from having had that experience whatever the outcome.
Choosing to make an informed decision based on the information you have, and that being enough.
Choosing to make the best of the decision you make, and taking the learning you’ve gained from that to the next one.
Choosing not to judge yourself for your past decisions and taking the learning with you moving forward. Choosing not to judge yourself for your future decisions.
You can’t have certainty over the outcome of your decisions. You do have certainty of how your current job or career is making you feel now.
How long would be long enough to have spent analysing and figuring everything out.
What’s worse: Making a decision and later finding out it didn’t work for you, or having never found out if it might have been the right one?
What possibilities and experiences are you missing out on because of fear of making the wrong decision?
You may be in a job or career that you’ve outgrown, lost all passion for, and you’ve been contemplating leaving for some time. You may have even got as far weighing up your outgoings with your incomings to see if you can afford it. And there seems to be possibilities. You’ve devised a plan of how you could quit, what you’d need to do first, and then next, and then after that. Part – time work, your savings, your investments, some traning, and other options open up more possibilities.
You could do this…
But… You are worried about not having enough money.
"I won’t have enough money to live on"
"I wont be able to pay my bills"
"I wont be able to afford my lifestyle"
"What if there isn’t enough money"
The first question to ask yourself. Are these statements actually true?
After you have done your budgeting, looked at your resources and you have a plan of action, are these statements actually true?
If the answer is yes, there is more exploration to be done regarding your plan of action and solutions to balance your dreams within your current financial capacity.
However if these statements are actually false…. If your fears about money are unfounded - it is fear, not money that is influencing your decisions.
Beneath your fears about not having enough money are often fears you have about yourself.
Here are some examples:
I fear I’m being unrealistic for go after my dreams.
I fear what other people will think of me if I leave this job.
I fear I don’t have what it takes to make this work.
I fear letting my family down
I fear I will fail.
I fear I’m not good enough to have what I want.
It is human nature to avoid what we don’t want or fear, instead of seeking what we want. While we avoid fear, to feel safe, we avoid the possibility of our dreams.
Choosing the riskier option, does mean opening yourself up to a level of uncertainty. Maybe financial security is something that you hold highly. At this moment in time, how much risk feels comfortable to you?
How does that risk measure up to staying where you are? How can you look differently at this risk so that it feels intentional? What is guaranteed that makes your dreams highly likely to happen? What is it about you that you know there’s no lack of demand of?
Think of a time in your life when you felt like you were about to loose everything (Or similar). Make a list of all the fears that you had when things felt the worst. Now look at this list. How many of these fears actually came true? If there are a few that did, what is it that you did to get through that situation to where you where today. Knowing that you got through that situation, what would you do differently if it happened again?
If you have enough money to pay your bills, put food on the table, provide for your family and have an active life, what is it really that you fear.
I’m a massive daydreamer and I love having my head in the clouds. It is very entertaining up there. However, there are times when my head feels too full and busy. Even when I have created the physical the space for solitude and reflection, my mind is just well, noisy. There is no space for any more information and no room left for me. While I’m at it, life is still happening around me and I’m unable pay it much attention.
The Betty Erickson Technique
I heard about a tool called the Betty Erickson Technique at a recent retreat I’d been to. Betty, the wife of Psychologist and Hypnotherapist Milton Erickson, developed this technique as a form of self-hypnosis that works by observing and articulating in your immediate environment, things you can see, hear and feel. It has been used successfully to aid relaxation, relieve insomnia and reduce stress.
Used in a mindful way, this very simple tool can be used direct your attention to the present; raising awareness of your surroundings and encouraging you to engage with them. Stating what you notice out loud provides the added advantage of creating some space from your over-active mind. (Try to think and talk at the same time and see what happens!)
Using this tool while engaging in an activity of something that you love, also reaps the benefit of heightening your experience, attention and appreciation of it.
The picture above was taken at the last place where I used this tool as I love to walk, especially in nature. My script went something like this.:
I can hear – birds singing
I can hear – the leaves rustling
I can hear – the wind whistling
I can hear – the crash of water as the geese jump in for a swim.
I can see – orange russet and green leaves
I can see – the suns reflection on the lake
I can see – leaves tumbling past me in the wind
I can see – oak trees more than 15 feet high
I can feel – the cold air against my face
I can feel – my scarf around my neck.
I can feel – my heart beating calmly
I can feel – the heaviness in my arms and legs
Take a pause and simply observe, then repeat with three different things you can see, hear and feel and then one.
I am now aware that I hear ________ (3x’s)
I am now aware that I see _________ (3x's)
I am now aware that I feel _________ (3x's)
I am now aware that I hear ________ (2x's)
I am now aware that I see _________ (2x's)
I am now aware that I feel _________ (2x's)
I am now aware that I hear _________(1x)
I am now aware that I see _________ (1x)
I am now aware that I feel _________ (1x)
You can repeat this as often and for as long as you wish, but what I love about this most, is that you can change how you feel, be present, find joy and be calm all in five minutes.
Try this while you are walking, painting, eating, relaxing with a cup of tea or whatever brings you real peace and joy. I would love to hear what the experience was like for you in the comments below.
Many of us go on holiday to decompress, reset, and reenergise, and come back to our own realities feeling refreshed. Having time to pause, exhale and release, is incredibly important. However we don't have to wait for the next holiday, to experience this.
The audio below, will allow to go to a place in your mind that has has always allowed you to slow down and reconnect with yourself. A few of my favourite spaces, usually involve a bench and somewhere green. For me, this not only symbolises stillness and peace, but also a space that welcomes, whoever you are, however you feel, with whatever you need from that space. There are no rules or expectations, just freedom to be.
Take a moment to think of your favourite calm space as you listen to this visualisation.
I’m on my sofa, appreciating the winter sunshine come through the window, shades of yellow and gold, lighting up my living room. The pink 'get well' roses from a dear friend, look gorgeous in the daylight. I’ve sat here for a number of days. It’s usually my favourite place; solitude, warmth, sunshine, and my sofa. But it's not today.
Today is the forth week in a row that being at home, hasn’t been a choice. I’m tired and in pain, and I don’t feel in control of my own body. Especially with simple things; my side hurts when I chop food. I chop food all of the time! Walking hurts, I love walking. And I have no energy.
This is my new normal. For now. It's temporary. And it feels anything but normal.
My thoughts have been running some similar themes:
"Being unwell feels really lonely"
"How dare you complain about something that’s temporary. For some people it isn’t."
You just need to rest and get better."
Then there is me in the middle, feeling sad, frustrated, and out of sync with my own body. Feeling guilty that I can't do more and wondering if i'm somehow responsible.
And here is the truth: I'd become tuned into everything else but the sound of my own body talking to me. Sometimes I forgot to listen. Sometimes I chose not to listen.
All my body has only ever wanted me to put her first, give her some time, let her rest and to heal.
This short term set backs only intention is to make me better.
And so now I am listening, being patient, caring and accepting where I am.
Body, I am ready when you are…
Fear of making the wrong decision