Are you in the middle of or considering making a life transition? Truthfully, it’s a combination of art and science. Here are 8 steps to get you from information-gathering to action:
1. Know your “Why”
Having crystal clear clarity about the reason for your transition is the first and most important step to achieving it successfully. Our “why” is our north star. Our why is the reason we keep moving forward when we (inevitably) hit road blocks. Take time to clarify your why. Get as detailed as you can and then write it down.
2. Build your future from your future, not from your past
This wisdom from Dr. Joe Dispenza relates to our habit of looking at our past to assess what we (think) we are capable of, and then using that information to build our future. But the only way to build a new and better future is to envision and believe that we are capable of creating something different. Look to where you want to go, not where you’re coming from.
3. Fall in love with the journey
To get to our goal, that place we want to be one year from now, we have to like, even love, the every day actions we will be taking and the practices we will be repeating. We must make the decision to commit to our ultimate goal, but be flexible about our “how,” knowing that there are many different ways to get to the same destination.
4. Make friends with uncertainty
I wish there was another option, but accepting uncertainty and even better, welcoming it, (yes, this can be done!) is the key to moving forward. Moving forward is the physics of transition. Fortunately, this mindset work can be achieved in the same way that we become stronger athletes every time we go out and do what we do. Every time we feel doubt and uncertainty but don’t run away from the feelings of discomfort, fear and anxiety that arise for all of us, we become stronger and more confident in taking action regardless of our feelings.
5. Acknowledge “Fear of Success”
It’s counter intuitive but we are more often fearful of what would happen and how our lives would change if we actually reached our goals than if we failed. A single parent who wants to date might worry about the impact of his dating on his children. A college graduate going into the workforce may worry that others will see him as a failure for “settling” for a certain job or position. An entrepreneur who wants to triple his income, may worry that friends and family will expect him to lend them money and be more generous. To remove the deeper blocks that hold us back, it’s critical to get clarity on what we fear will happen if we succeed, and to address those fears with compassion and an action plan.
6. Shift the focus from the Finish Line to the Start Line
We typically focus on, visualize, and dream about the finish line, but somehow never get to the start line! Turn it around and just do whatever it takes to get to the start line. Most people who have gone through this process will tell you that once you get to the start line, you are already more than halfway to your goal.
7. Know the difference between Passive action and Massive action
Most of us love to take Passive action. We read, listen, study, and generally consume enough content to make us experts in whatever goal we want to accomplish. We have so much information but somehow fall short of actually taking meaningful action. This is Passive action, and it has its place in our lives. However, Massive action, which is defined by those steps/actions we take in the “real”world, allows us to move forward and create a new outcome, a new life for ourselves. In the words of Brooke Castillo, “ Passive action is all the things that are done “in preparation” for action. Massive action is the action that you are going to take and continue taking until you hit your goal.” Hint: Massive action carries with it a 100% chance of sometimes falling on your face (almost always) in front of others.
8. Gain confidence from competence not from empty words and cheerleading
I love a good quote, mantra, and a supportive friend as much as the next person. As a coach, I use all 3 (and more) to support my clients’ success. But true confidence ONLY comes through taking action and gaining true knowledge of your competence. We do not take action because we are confident. We become confident as a result of taking action.
There you have it. Whether you are a stay at home parent who wants to be an entrepreneur, a Millennial who is ready to transition from school to the work force, or a C Level executive transitioning to a new position or company, these steps will set you up for success.
Additionally, surround yourself with a community that will encourage and support you unconditionally but with honesty. You can 10x your growth and momentum by working with a Professional Transition Coach. When you work with a Coach, you have a partner in co-creating a new future. Your Coach is in your life, invested 100% in your success, with you every step of the way, and most importantly, adept at keeping you motivated and accountable.
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