I was in a low place in my life about six years ago. I had just had ACL reconstruction to repair a rugby injury. I was faced with six months of not being allowed to run and a full year before I could play sports again. What the heck! I think the only years I didn't play a sport were before I was three! It was going to be so hard. To my disappointment - It was even worse than I even realized.
When you can’t exercise, as you have your whole life, you lose your ability to deal with stress, to feel fit, to bring in endorphins, to regulate mood, to maintain a healthy weight and to meditate in a way that athletes do. So I gained weight, became moody, and along with other things I also lost my positivity on the inside (oh believe me I was still putting on a happy face to others on the outside).
I crashed into a HUGE valley!
The valley is a place we all get stuck in sometimes. Ok what do I mean by valley? Well think of the highs and lows in life. You’re feeling up sometimes and feeling down at other moments. The worst thing you can do is make decisions in the low or and I call it the valley.
This is what I see in my clients. When things get overwhelming, stressful, when they are full of anxiety, when it just feels tough – they make a drastic decision.
So what was the decision I made? I postponed my wedding.
I’ve had people come to me who have made decisions in the valley to:
Then what do you do if you're in a valley and feel like you need to make a decision about something?
Follow these seven steps!
It’s not all bad!
Now there is beauty to being in the valley. We’re experiencing our emotions so strongly that we can’t just brush them aside or hide behind them anymore. They do bring out some truth to a lack of satisfaction or unhappiness. The thing to remember is that where we think the trouble is coming from might not be the same area of life that it started in. That’s why I suggest you go through the seven steps above.
P.S. If you've made a drastic decision I can coach you on a plan to feel satisfied again. Also, if you feel like you're in the valley and are stuck let's talk. Contact me for a complimentary consult to see how I can support you.
As every school year comes to an end kids are coming home with report cards. How did that time of year make you feel: anxious or excited? You either had grades of praise or grades that sparked a deeper parent/child conversation. Now that we’re older you may get a progress or performance report at work that states how you have been doing at your job. If you’re lucky enough you’ll also get some time with your boss or supervisor who explains your review. Again maybe it makes you feel anxious or excited, but at least you know where you stand.
In life, who gives us grades and reports on how we are living?
Who tells us how we are progressing?
And who would be able to review how well we are doing at our life purpose?
Can you do that with full honesty and be unbiased?
In coaching we call this the hard truth: either asking the hard questions that bring out the real and honest answers or stating what we see is true for our clients.
Asking the questions to get the hard truth:
The reality is we don’t stop long enough to even ask the easy questions. We’re busy doing things. Following our schedule. Even if we had the time most people wouldn’t ask the hard questions because the answers scare us. We know what could come out or at least the feeling behind it.
Saying the hard truth:
Someone tells you honestly how they see something even if it may hurt you. It’s the truth. Often what we’re ignoring. But when a friend or family member says it, it’s hard to see it as a kind thing to do. The issue is that time and time again we don't want to hurt someone or we don't think it's our place to say anything. So we don't and our friend continues to go down the same path, completely unaware.
So then how do you do it? How do you get to the point where you can find the hard truth and turn it around to bring satisfaction into every area of your life?
You get a coach to do it.
I don’t usually write a lot about what I do as a coach, but what I’ve been finding is that what I do isn’t always clear. Especially because there are so many aspects to what a coach does. So many reasons why people hire a coach. And so many possible results that our clients enjoy.
Asking the hard truth is just one tool of hundreds that I have in my belt. Also, it can be used in one of the three principles I was trained to use or in a mix of all three.
Well enough coach training talk! Back to why you should care about the hard truth.
Life is short. Not knowing your truth or being asked these questions means you don’t know. As kids or at work we know. And while knowing or hearing it can be difficult or emotional it does help us reset our course. Like a plane who is off course 90% of the time, consistently resetting your course means you’ll land at your destination.
Not knowing where you’re at does catch up to you. One day it could just smack you in the face with a situation you’re now in or one that you’ve missed. I have my own hard truth that I have faced. Taking it in small bites is easier to swallow. The beauty is that the hard truth could be that you’re rocking it! But until you’re asked you don’t know.
I'd like to ask you those questions. Want me to? If you're ready I have three 1:1 coaching spots out of 12 that are now available. These only open up a few times a year, so for those serious about getting clarity, results and increasing satisfaction, I'd like to talk to you. We'll chat to see if we're a fit. I'm looking for committed women who are ready to make some movement. Let me know if that's you.
Last week I spoke about knowing when change starts and the three ways it kicks off.
But I’ve been asked, “Diane, if you have start style #3 where you act and then figure out later it’s changed you. At what point do you know you have been changed?”
Here is the description of #3: We act
“Basically we just start doing something and that action causes a bigger change. We didn’t decide to cause the change and didn’t realize it was going to happen it just comes. This could show up in a positive or negative way.”
To see examples click here.
This is an important question because without realizing the change has happened you miss out on two things:
1. You can’t reap the benefits of the change.
2. You be late to reset your course if you’re way off target.
Then how do you know when you’re actions are creating change?
There are a few signs – if you pay attention.
A. You feel uncomfortable: Yep you start to feel like something is off. This isn’t a bad thing! It’s just that you have left your comfort zone and what you’re doing isn’t automatic yet. This is normal for when change occurs. Embrace it. You’re learning and growing right now.
B. Others tell you: Yep they open their mouths and point out either how you’ve changed or changes that they’ve seen in what you’re doing. Not to worry though! It usually comes in the form of a compliment. Ask them follow-up questions to get clarity on what they see the change is, what you did and what the impacts are.
C. You get new problems: This one I have been working through this year. I was so annoyed with all issues I had to defuse and the fires I had to put out. That was until a friend said, “Oh you’ve reached a new level in your business and with each change brings new problems.” So if this has happened to you too then consider yourself lucky because it could be a sign you’ve had new success. Trust me changing your perspective does help to make it a little easier to deal with.
D. You give advice easily: When was the last time you heard someone else’s problem and easily gave them a solution? They were probably so grateful and it really was nothing for you to do it. Then you remembered the time when you didn’t know that answer and even the experience or situation that taught you how to solve it. This sign is so great because you realize through mentoring how much you have grown and how far you have come.
Once you realize your actions have created a change ask yourself: “Do I actually want this change? “Is it positively influencing me and my life?”
If it isn’t, reset your course by choosing new actions.
If it is, then carry on. Now with more intention.
So you could be different... and isn't that exciting!
I’ve been consistently in a state of transition for the past year. Not by conscious design, but more by the acceleration of progress through my goals. Oh and a little by accident. This has meant that there has been a swirling feeling of change going on around me. Almost like I’m changing faster than I even realize. Maybe it’s happened to you. One day you just go, “Oh wow! When did that happen?” or “That wasn’t like that before.”
You may be wondering, “Then how does change start?”
From what I’ve learnt, what I’ve experienced in my own life and seen with my clients...
Change Kicks Off in Three Ways – see which has happened to you recently.
1. We decide
Once day you just say I want this in my life or want to achieve this and you do it. This often happens when people say, “I want a new career. I’m going to search what else is out there.” Or you do the opposite and decide you don’t want something in your life and you make the change. Ex, “I don’t want to carry around this extra 20 lbs anymore. That’s it! I’m hiring a trainer.”
For me, I wanted to run an online coaching program and have a consistent weekly blog, so I did. I put the plan into place and I made the necessary changes.
Awesome fact: We have control over what we want to change.
Downfall: Sometimes takes us too long to decide.
2. We’re pushed
Unlike the 1st style this start comes when we must react to a situation or someone else’s wishes. It can be positive or negative. For example, “We need to move because we’re having another child/the parents are coming to live with us/or we’re going into debt.” We may have eventually made the decision, but in this case we have to make a change like when we’re fired, become ill, or have other pressures from those close to us.
For me, I had a marketing consultant contact me about redoing the content on my website and I said, “Yes” which started a whole bunch of changes.
Awesome fact: Opportunities to change present themselves or we can get moved out of an area of feeling stuck.
Downfall: We do what others want or are forced to react to a decision and feel a loss of control.
3. We act
Basically we just start doing something and that action causes a bigger change. We didn’t decide to cause the change and didn’t realize it was going to happen it just comes. This could show up in a positive or negative way. Like someone staying later at work and missing his or her gym time and gaining weight. Or because they’re working more the boss notices and gives them a promotion. And even their marriage or dating life starts to diminish.
For me, I wanted to start a single group for women to come together and form authentic relationships and be allowed to grow both personally and professionally. This was the birth of Dynamic Women in Action which has now grown to over 300 women with five locations. It makes me laugh when people say, “Wow what a great business model.” But that wasn’t my intention it just seemed to happen and I was along for the ride.
Awesome fact: We get to truly be in the moment.
Downfall: We can make a wrong turn or miss out on the big picture opportunities.
So that's how change starts...
Your Turn: Do you have your own examples of how one of these three styles of starting change happened in your life? Comment below.
Brownie points if you can come up with an example that was two or more of them at the same time.