People often ask me why I became a Life Coach, and the answer is simple – Change. Change can be one of the most exciting, most frightening and most unsettling things we go through. In my case, making different choices pushed me in the direction of Life Coaching. Looking back, the changes I went through can only be seen as positive, but it’s easy to forget about the journey people go on towards change. This is without doubt the hardest part.
My journey of change…
Busy, successful Career Woman…..always on the road……mum of three but working full-time. This was me – and I loved it. I loved being important, knowing exactly what I was doing and hearing the whispered comments of ‘how on earth does she fit it all in’. Being this person satisfied my need for recognition – I felt important, successful and independent, and I do believe that I would have continued in this direction indefinitely – why wouldn’t I…I had been building my career since the age of 18!
But a combination of circumstances led me to change my life. The opportunity to work for the family business, the idea of being able to spend time with my children, and the chance to follow my long-term dream of training in Coaching and Counselling all came up at the same time. And no matter how positive and exciting these things were, the decision to step out of my comfort zone was one of the hardest I have ever made.
When change is good…
The problem here is that change is often viewed as something that is thrust upon you and something that you cannot control; by seeing it in this scary way we give ourselves permission to feel the strong emotions of confusion, lack of control and self-doubt. But what happens when change is a conscious decision? When changes are made for all the right reasons and are overwhelmingly positive, are we still allowed to feel these things?
Of course we are – and the more we tell ourselves that these emotions are silly and insignificant, the bigger and more overwhelming they become. Our sensible lists of pros and cons, and our friends and family reassuring us that we have done the right thing will not make these feelings go away. Like all emotions, we need to accept them, address them, talk about them and most importantly allow ourselves to experience them.
Finding contentment with change…
I now understand that whatever change you decide to make, whether it be a new job, new home, family changes or retirement – it’s OK to feel sad about what you have left behind. Yes – it may be the best decision you ever made, it may have made great improvements to your life – but if your emotions are at odds with this, they are still relevant – and realising this is the biggest step towards feeling content with your new situation.
Change can be a great thing, but it may not be easy. Finding the right support through your life changes is invaluable – it certainly was to me.