Make Room for the New by Making Room for the Now.~Kimberly Rex
Fall is that time of year when trees full and green let go of their leaves. What is interesting about this process is that it is done with the purpose of supporting the next cycle of life. In fact, the leaves are not just falling off the branches. They are being pushed off by the new buds that have set for the coming spring.
When you hear this, I wonder if you experience a shift in feeling? There is a sense of purpose to this process. And in preparation, the tree leaves are vibrant with color much like the coming of spring. They are making room for the new by making room for the now!
Is there a message for all of us within this process of change?
I remember listening to Jean Houston speaking several years ago about making change. She spoke of the mechanics of the quantum leap where an electron jumps into a new expression of something greater than itself on its own. Before this happens, however, there is the need to experience homeostasis. Getting oriented to your feelings, thoughts with the insights of information that have brought you to the need for change in the now is an essential part of the process for positive change.
Change takes you out of routine, habit and the familiar. At this crossroad, you have a Point of Choice. You can either stay in your current situation, relationship or pattern, or choose to experience something completely new.
Based on the book, Changing for Good by James Prochaska, PhD, there are aspects of the process that can be described as The Five Cycles of Change. The feeling process that accompanies these cycles are similar to what Elizabeth Kubler-Ross researched in her description of the Grief Process including denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Each aspect is unique to each person in sequence, duration and intensity.
When we feel stuck, going nowhere–even starting to slip backward–we may actually be backing up to get a running start.
The Five Cycles of Change
1. Pre-contemplation: This is the place where you are likely still in denial, and not yet aware that you want or need to change.
2. Contemplation: At this point, you may be starting to experience uneasiness about your current situation. You may experience a sense of feeling unsettled, angry, upset and resentful that you are where you are in this situation. You may be bargaining in this stage.
3. Preparation: As you work through your feelings, you reach a place of acceptance. This is the place where you look at the pro’s and con’s. This is the Point of Choice.
4. Action: You focus, make a decision and start taking some form of action.
5. Maintenance: You check your action and continue to take steps to actively choose what is life-energizing. You feel confident and thankful for your work, and see the value in your positive change.
6. Recycling: You check and move into an earlier stage to understand, question or update your thinking and planning.
Much like the tree letting go of its leaves to allow new buds, you have a choice about how you wish to experience your process of change. Confusion and disorientation may seem like challenging aspects of moving into a new way of being, yet the anticipation of new growth and possibility as you move into a new way of experiencing life can also be exhilarating, joyous and freeing.
Trees express beauty in their brilliant colors before letting go to prepare for the next life cycle. You also can experience a sense of joy, confidence and energy as you move through the process with the information and wisdom you have gained from your experiences up to now.
Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower. ~Albert Camus
Be Like a Tree
Trees are grounded and rooted. They weather seasons of change: cold, ice, storms, rain, and sleet as well as warm breezes and sunshine that bring flowers, fruit and harvest over and over again. The idea of connecting to an anchor image of a time when you moved through a challenging situation in your past that was successful can help you feel grounded and hopeful with your next steps now.
How did you feel in that situation? Bring these feelings into your current situation. The power of this positive memory will energize your emotional brain. Your emotional brain only knows “now.” As you motivate your choices with positive emotion, you create the neural pathways and encouragement for the conscious mind to take action in the present.
Knowing that the cycles of life and change are part of living is wisdom. You can choose how you experience your life in any moment. Each breath, each thought, each new day brings new opportunities for growth and new possibilities.
Would you like to easily and naturally experience more resilience and positive life energy when you are faced with change? Get “Eight Natural Modalities to Help You Navigate Change”
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