Transitions usually follow 6 steps. If you attempt to skip any of those steps you will be frustrated and you will delay the point when you will actually reach your goal. The steps of transformation will not be mocked–you must walk through them all to make lasting change. And we don’t want to make changes that don’t survive a season, do we? Ask the gym owner who couldn’t sleep in January but is lonely now because all of the ‘temporary’ changes have been forgotten. As you prepare to begin your transformation journey, I want you to be realistic about your level of readiness and prepare to be successful. Skipping transition steps taste nasty, just like skipping the salt when making a cake. Be realistic about what you need to do to transform.
Many people who know me personally are stunned right now that I used a baking metaphor in the title because I don’t cook but I used to work for a food company that offered baking products so I picked up some information by osmosis. And, even though the end result is sweet, cake recipes often call for salt. Fascinating how we can use something bitter to create a treat… There may be a hint in there about the fact that every step of the journey to becoming a more powerful woman may not be sweet. I’ll let you think about that for a moment while I talk about the steps for transition.
People typically go through these steps during a transition:
- Loss: feeling fear, paralyzed, overwhelmed
- Doubt: feeling rebellious, skeptical, ‘salty’
- Discomfort: feeling anxiety, distracted, confused
- Discovery: feeling creative, energized, excited
- Understanding: feeling productive, confident, settled
- Integration: feeling focused, powerful, satisfied
Right now you can just feel a change in the air because Spring is coming! You have probably been waiting all Winter for Spring to come so you could really ‘make some changes’. How long is your list? If you converted it to digital because the paper got to be too much, I see you! But you are ready to change, right?
Remember the Time when Change Felt Good?
Before the change actually begins you are often excited. This is before you get to loss and doubt, before you realize that saying yes to new things means saying no to things that no longer serve you well but are so darn comfortable. But change can be energizing and fresh starts are so full of hope and promise. Who wouldn’t want more Spring goodies like sunlight, consistently sunny days and a fresh sense of urgency to be a more powerful woman? You can almost hear the planet buzzing as you go about your day–the planet seems to have a different energy.
BUT… Maybe you are observing the energy but you aren’t feeling it. Maybe you are agonizing about all the changes you are thinking about and you are overwhelmed, don’t know where to start and already feel like change isn’t possible for you. While the end result would be awesome, you are exhausted from thinking about the gap between where you are and where you wish you were. Where should you start–which do you tackle first? And where is the energy coming from because you just started taking your allergy meds again? STOP. Take a deep breath and:
Deepen your connection with something bigger than yourself.
There is so much power in choosing how to move along your journey. Choose which connection you would like to deepen. Some will choose a deeper spiritual connection, some will choose to enhance their connection with family or a significant other, and others will find a community cause to pour some passion into. Any of those work; the magic is in choosing. Connecting with something ‘larger’ helps you keep your obstacles in proper perspective. Make a decision and then figure out what you need to do (baby steps) to deepen your connection.
Reduce self-induced chaos by selecting a peacemaker.
There are probably several activities that you find peaceful. I’m suggesting that you select one to be your go-to peacemaker during your first season of change. Playing the piano, caring for tropical fish, or gardening are a few examples of peacemakers that you may choose. Pre-selecting your calming activity will enable you to quickly regain your peace in the moment. You don’t have to wonder what to do, you can just do it. Powerful!
Celebrate yourself authentically and frequently.
As you complete those baby steps and make progress toward your bigger goals, don’t forget to acknowledge that you are making progress. Too often we jump into the next challenge without patting ourselves on the back, taking note of how far we have come or buying a new purse (or however you choose to celebrate you). Motivation is an inside job and one of the best ways to keep that firing going is to complete tasks and reward yourself afterwards. If you wait six months to celebrate an accomplishment, how good will that feel? Not very.
There is so much more I could say about preparing to be more powerful but I will stop for now. Some women seem to move in and out of change so effortlessly, that if you dare to compare you may feel inadequate in comparison. I saw a Powerful Lesson on Pinterest the other day, ‘Stop comparing your inside with someone else’s outside’. Translation: You don’t know how easy or difficult someone else’s journey is and you don’t have to care. Focus on your journey and prepare for your steps of transformation by deepening your connection with something significant, pre-selecting a peace-inducing activity, and stopping to celebrate your Allegrativity! It is more than ok, it’s entirely appropriate to transform at your own pace. Your sense of accomplishment upon arrival will be just so sweet.
Skipping transition steps taste nasty, and what a waste! Be realistic about what you need to do to transform. Got a tip for going through all the steps necessary? Please share in the comments below.
Have a POWERFUL day!