MAKING THE BEST USE OF
Change in the World
The Greek philosopher Heraclitus wrote, “Change is the only constant in life.” Whether it is a personal decision to change a behavior, a change at work or a surprising change in the body, the ability to engage resilience, courage and clarity makes a big difference. When a person knows they need to make a change, yet procrastinates or avoids making it, their will and courage are weakened.
Some people are more welcoming and tolerant of change than others. Those that enjoy an opportunity to learn and grow personally or professionally will see it as a good thing. Those that are very fixed in mindset and routines often become skeptical, and will experience more resistance; their comfort zone will kick and scream. Habits create a feeling of security, so any disruption can create anxiety and fear of the unknown.
Changes often feel stressful; just how stressful depends on the individual going through it. The World Health Organization reports that stress has become a worldwide epidemic. Change itself does not necessarily cause the body stress as much as the reaction, fear and/or resistance to the change. Human beings have a remarkable attraction to stories—and those most stressed often tell themselves a very despairing story about themselves, the change afoot or both.
This cycle of stressing about the perceived stressors perpetuates the tension. The brain goes into fight-or-flight mode. Our overall life force gets zapped, and the level of stress affecting the heart muscle contributes to heart disease. Tendencies of excess anger, hostility, aggressiveness, urgency, competition and preoccupation with work often accompany that strain. Heart disease is much more common in individuals that experience chronic stress, particularly job stress. When we view stress in a positive way as something that is there to help us, the body believes it, and the physiological response to stress becomes much healthier. The heart muscle responds accordingly.
Daniel Goodenough, life mission expert and author, says, “Living in this world offers an opportunity to reinvent ourselves continually. This is a natural part of the living one’s life mission. Life mission is not just career, it is your heart’s calling for being in this world at this time, in the life you are living. Now it’s more important than ever to know why we’re here. This connection to passion is a lifeline to the source of inspiration and energy that keeps humanity going.”
Here are some tips for moving forward more gracefully with change:
Curiosity allows for a space of kind inquiry and new possibility, instead of reactivity.
Get very real with yourself about why the old way is not helpful, workable or sustainable. Take the opportunity to explore the possible outcome of what could transpire if the change is not made.
Reflect and name specifically why the new change has meaning and value to you (not a boss, partner, friend).
Imagination is helpful for seeing, feeling and sensing the new change in motion as if it is already in place.
Get strategic about the conditions that will best support the new change and desired results. Engage a buddy to help with staying accountable. For a change that will ideally happen first thing in the morning, we will do well to set ourselves up for success the night before. For instance, lay out the clothes for that morning walk and put shoes, coat and gloves by the door, ready to go.
Be intentional and persistent in repeating a new habit or way regularly. Music teachers often say, “Practice makes permanent.”
Practice Mindfulness “Mindfulness is simply being aware of what is happening right now, without wishing it were different; enjoying the pleasant without holding on when it changes (which it will); being with the unpleasant without fearing it will always be this way (which it won’t).” ~James Baraz
If the aspirations deep in one’s being are not just a personal inclination, Goodenough says, “Our world stands on the shoulders of those who followed their visions in the past. Evolution, however you may feel about it, is the byproduct of something calling us to a new way. Each time one person, anywhere in the world, listens to that voice coming from within, the world changes in ways hard to map. We know from chaos theory that small, incremental changes can have enormous effects on systems all over the planet. In this “wired” world, these changes are amplified almost instantly everywhere in the world.
Each person’s choice to honor the voice of their life mission or not does affect every other person on the planet. The principle of morphic resonance states that anytime anyone anywhere accomplishes something, it will become easier for someone else to do it everywhere in the world.”
Sarah Karnes, a life-transition coach, works with clients to help them navigate change and reclaim their vitality. With 25 years of experience in personal transformation and the Way of the Heart integration process, she helps participants powerfully realign their life direction with compassion so they may move forward with more joy, vitality and clarity.
The Way of the Heart Foundation Training
taught by Daniel Goodenough, to be held February 15 through 17 and 22 through 24, in Northbrook, will release stuck patterns and beliefs so participants can make the changes they really want; bring new vitality, clarity and consciousness to health, relationships, career and finances; and realize keys for their life mission.
For more information and registration, call Sarah Karnes at 262-745-8362.