Changing Your Life on Your Own Terms
There are plenty of self-help books and Instagram quotes that encourage us to “make a change” in our lives. The essence of such a message certainly has a positive and motivational tone that I totally appreciate. But, let me kindly ask, “Do any of you get puzzled by such a question?” Come on now, you know what I mean – those bold “Change Your Life in 30 Days” book titles.
You see, I don’t think making a change should have a specific timeframe around it. The secret sauce to wanting to change something small or significant in your life is much easier than you think.
Why? Because, I believe deep down we already know what we want. We already know what we need to do. It is igniting and fueling the fire within us to actually change, and do the work to change that some people often struggle with. So, whether it is 7 days, 30 days or 3 months, you are the one in charge of when and how long it is going to take to actually change an element in your life. My important newsflash reminder to you is this, change should not be on a schedule. Change should be an organic evolution of one wanting to commit, process, develop, and live to what they proposed to themselves.
You may know that lovely line, “We are all a work in progress,” – well, I absolutely honor that! Choosing to make a change comes from a place of strength, but keeping that conviction to do so should be supported by the simple fact that change takes time.
This is why I encourage everyone going through self-development or making an improvement to allow yourself to not feel the pressure or expectation to evolve into a magically new human being overnight. Change is about going through the emotions and conscious thoughts in your head. You are the only person with the power to change yourself or your life, and don’t forget that!
With that said, the transition between deciding what you want to alter in your life to actually putting your mind to action may feel like a bit of limbo at first. However, I want you to look at it from a different perspective and see that time period as more of a personal tool. Making a conscious decision to change is very self-empowering; how you go about it is just as powerful. Use this time wisely and patiently because it will only benefit your development and outcome.
Take a look below at a few other helpful tools I’ve learned over the years when wanting to make a change in my life (on my terms!).
1. Connect With Your Intuition: I am a firm believer that when wanting to change your life, you should truly give yourself time to own your decision and listen to your intuition. Your gut will never serve you wrong, and it will eventually become fluid with your conscious mind when you come to a point of peace.
2. Rest and Breathe Out Your Thoughts: A good night’s sleep absolutely does a body and mind good. If you indeed want to make a life change (no matter the size), I encourage you to allow your thoughts to settle after days of solid sleep. The more rested you are, the more mindful you will be about the process of change.
3. Tune Out The Noise: Once you tell people that you want to make a change in your life, everyone is going to have an opinion. I suggest keeping your initial thoughts to yourself until you come to more of a concrete idea of what that may be and how you want to handle the next steps ahead. Certainly, open up to your spouse or lover. But, I found the less opinions floating around, the better it is for you to see the big picture that is best for you.
4. Be Cool With Uncertainty: Making decisions to change your life comes with unanswered questions. Whether it is where to move, a career change, divorce, etc, you are going to have question marks. My wish for you is to turn your viewpoint of the word “uncertainty” into a support word. If somebody asks you what is next for you, hold your head high and proudly say, “I’m uncertain about that at this very moment.” That is a gentle way of telling someone to back off and acknowledging to your self that it is perfectly OK not to have all the answers.
5. Let Go of Co-dependency: I wish I could highlight and put flashing stars around this point. Through the process of change, you may start to question your thoughts. When such moments come fluttering into your mind, remind yourself of one of my favorite go to questions; “What do I want?”
On a personal note to all of you, I believe and encourage each and every one of you to embrace, love, and truly feel the process of change. There have been moments in my life (even as of two weeks ago!) where I knew I had to make a change.
In the past, feelings like fear, insecurity and self-doubt stopped me from moving ahead, but once I revisited that “What do I want?” question, I was able to reboot my inner strength and confidence.
So, if you have been thinking about making a change, reinventing a new path, or have consciously decided to shake up your life in a positive way, please remember that you are in charge of directing each step of that journey. The process in making changes may be filled with pauses, slow motion and fast forward moments, but the only person holding that stopwatch is you.
I believe in you!
– Matt Jacobi