Goals, Renovation, and Guts

Do you have the guts to make those big leaps in your life?

You know the leaps I’m talking about.  The kind of leaps that get you out of the relationship you’re in that doesn’t feel good to you anymore, or the leaps that get you to put the distance between yourself and a parent who is unstable, or the leaps from a secure job you hate into a large expansive insecure world of working for yourself.  They’re all scary.  Change can be overwhelming.

I’ve been making leaps a lot lately… a process that I have compared most to home renovation.  You start with the bathroom, and that leads you to rethink the bedroom… then the hallways don’t match.. so you keep going down the list until the house you started with has been completely renovated.  Room-by-room renovation is WAY less intimidating than starting out with the plan to change everything.

Here’s What I Know Right Now.

  1. My unhappiness alarm should be set to a more sensitive setting.  I am a LARGELY happy person.  I find the silver lining.  I seek to learn the lesson from whatever situation made me fussy.  Here’s the thing though: If I am doing everything in my power to make my attitude a positive one and I still find myself wanting to cry, something needs to change.  Bad days happen.  Rough patches come but I will be damned if I allow myself to be unhappy for an extended period of time.
  2. I’m not the one with the guts.  If I were left to my own devices I would more than likely stay rooted in fear, afraid to jump anywhere.  I am the queen of thoughts like “Well, it’s bad but at least I know what this bad looks like.  Maybe it’ll get better by itself.”  Want to know where I get my guts?  From my friends and family.  The people who believe that I can do things that I am not even sure I’m capable of.  Whenever I get timid, I call one of them up and they tell me that they have absolutely NO doubt that I can do this.
  3. I know you THINK this is uncharted territory, but it’s probably not.  If you can give me an example of some life change/job change/personal change that has NOT been done by someone I will bake you a cake.  This is not to say that it’s not intimidating as hell from where you’re sitting, but I am saying that there are resources out there for you.  Do not reinvent the wheel.  You’ll spend an inordinate amount of time crafting your wheel, and it will end up looking at best life that other wheel someone made.   Look for a mentor, someone who has done what you want to.  Ask them what advice helped them.  Ask them what books they read.  Write that shit down, buy those books.  Become a student of whatever change you want to see happen.
  4. Have an effing blueprint.  You want change.  You want it now.  I get it.  BUT do not take a sledgehammer to your life without a plan guys.  Make some lists.  Make a plan.  Sure, you can get out of that relationship TONIGHT and deal with the consequences tomorrow but how much better prepared would you be if you spent some time processing and making an action plan before you make the big move?  You don’t have to pull the rug out from below yourself, that’s just silly.
My friend Jenny Blake is basically the BEST at helping people make blueprints.  She makes templates for just about everything and this is what she has to says are the steps to get from the point where you are thinking about changing something to actually doing it (and, of course she made a template that you can use):
  1. When you think of [topic], what are you most excited about?
  2. How does this [topic] fit in with your vision of your highest self?
  3. What is your goal in this area? Now double it. What is the version of the goal that is so big you are afraid to admit (even to yourself) for fear of failure?
  4. What’s holding you back / What are you afraid of?
  5. What support do you need to move forward?
  6. What one next step would make the biggest impact to move your forward (or help with your decision)?
  7. What would achieving this get you?
  8. Close your eyes and ask each major decision-making system for advice: What does your head say? What does your heart say? What does your gut say? How can you reconcile the three? (Okay so I cheated and combined four questions in one)
  9. Dig even deeper. What do you really want?
  10. What are you waiting for?

What kind of BIG changes are YOU thinking about making?