Thursday, January 29, 2009

There Are No Rules, And That's Okay!

Let's see. A couple of weeks ago I promised to talk with you the next week, about Square Two. There was just one little problem with that. I wasn't there! To be able to talk about where you are in the change cycle, it helps to be there!
So now a couple of weeks, and a lot of personal work and insight later, I am glimpsing Square Two. Life tends to be like the picture to the left. The road ahead appears straight, but ultimately there are always curves ahead. When you are moving into square two, you often find yourself changing things in your life. You might color your hair, or cut it all off. You might paint a room, or redecorate the whole house. Ideas begin to pop up about adventures you are considering, new careers seem plausible, and for some, a complete revamping of their whole life, flashes before there eyes.
One sign that I have been moving into Square Two is that I went shopping for light bulbs and came home with paint to color the walls of my guest room. Another sign is that I suddenly want to rewrite the novel I finished in November, and I am loving the creativity of my work.
Often people are better at some squares than others. Even though Square One is confusing and hard for some, there are those who enjoy the fog and seem to feed off of the continued pain and drama. For me, I really love Square Two! The mantra for this square, which Martha Beck talks about in Finding Your Own North Star, is There are no rules, and that's okay. This is the war cry of people like me, those Aquarius's who want to change the world, discover the answer, and traverse the wonders of the world on foot! It can be a lot of fun and is such a creative place that I could just set up housekeeping and stay for good.
If fact, right now I'm moving in. I've brought my books and computer, and all the material to create, and hopefully I will remember to come back to earth now and then and check in on my family and my business.
If any of you out there read this post, leave me a comment, so I will have to come back to ground to answer it.
Asta la vista,

Friday, January 9, 2009

I Don't Know Where the Hell I'm Going and That's Okay!

I saw this picture and it reminded me of the "summer of my discontent." That was the summer about eighteen years ago where I was the closest I've ever come to wanting to give up. Believe me I am one stubborn woman and I have been through a lot, but I would hang on for dear life to outmoded ways, men, and bad habits, like they were a lifeline.

That summer my marriage was falling apart, my mother had died the January before, and I had no clue how I was going to make it. I had this vision of sitting on the porch of a mental institution somewhere, wearing a bathrobe, and doing absolutely nothing. Occasionally someone kind would stop by and bring me a cup of tea and that was the whole of my vision.

"Why am I bringing this up now," you ask? I am bringing it up because what I am describing above was Square One of the Change Cycle. The mantra for Square One, (according to Martha Beck in Finding Your Own North Star) is "I don't know what the hell is going on, and that's okay."

This last week or two, I have been visiting Square One again. It is a much mellower, less dramatic Square One, but it is Square One. This often happens when things change in our lives. It can be brought on by changes at work, national disasters, new relationships, and completion of goals. Anything that makes us question what we want and where we are going, can push us into Square One.

My visit this time is due to an amazing year! I became a Master Coach. I traveled a lot and had miraculous experiences. I began making a lot more money. I learned so much about myself that at this point I am wondering how much more to learn could there possibly be! What I forgot to do along the way was stop at a few crucial points and breathe and soak in my experiences. I just kept plunging into new territory and eventually found myself doing some work that I didn't love. I didn't hate it, but it did not resonate with me. My stubborn streak is still there and it took someone else deciding that it wasn't working for me, to make me willing to quit.

Again, I know you are probably wondering why I am telling you this! I am telling you this because this is the way life works. For all of us there are times when life happens, good or bad, up or down, and we find ourselves wondering where to go next. When you find yourself in Square One, there are some things you can do to help.

  1. Be kind to yourself. Make sure you practice good self care. Don't forget to eat, sleep, and excercise.
  2. Don't make huge changes or decisions if at all possible. Take baby steps. This is a time for slow easy moves.
  3. Take time to be still and listen to your heart and body. They can tell you when you are ready to move ahead.
  4. Seek support and guidance from friends and family. If you need more help than that, contact a Life Coach or Counselor.
  5. Remember that you have survived, even thrived, through change before and will again.

I began listening to my own advice and can report that I am feeling much better about where I am. I am beginning to feel the excitement and creativity of Square Two. If you are wondering what that is about, I will write more next week.

Right now, I think I need a cup of tea!