It’s time for some changes in my home these days. That doesn’t sound so awful does it? Replacing worn out furniture or things that have outlived their usefulness is something we all need to do from time to time. I look forward to that fresh new look and uncluttered space.
But… I am finding it hard to let go, even though I know it is time. The chaos and disorder has been disorienting and stressful. Anxiety and second thoughts over decisions of what to keep and what to let go of have escalated with each choice.
If such a seemingly easy task of letting go of old furniture is hard, then how do we meet the challenge of much bigger changes in our lives? Before we can move to a new place of being after major life transition, we need to examine old messages and beliefs that have outlived their usefulness.
It is only after we have gained this understanding of what we have held onto and why, that we clear the space for exchanging those old non-supportive messages for new ones that support who we are. Here are two examples of making space for change.
“How can this be? I can’t believe that they have laid me off after all my years of hard work! This is so unfair! What am I going to do?”
Mary is overwhelmed and reeling from the loss of the job she had for 25 years. She is feeling overwhelmed, angry and frightened. She is consumed with her job search and yet she is spinning her wheels and not making much headway.
Self-defeating messages about her worth are running rampant through her mind in a constant replay of “not good enough”. Along with her anger and fear, these thoughts sabotage how she approaches her job search and each interview she goes to.
Mary needs to clear out these old messages to make space for self affirming thoughts. These thoughts will be a foundation for clarity to define what she wants for herself. Positive messages will bolster her faith and hope that she can achieve her goal of finding a new job.
Once Mary realized how damaging her old messages were, she resolved to set about clearing them out by examining how they held her back and how untrue they were. She cleared space to be able to see her gifts of resilience and persistence.
Mary made space for knowing what she could bring to the jobs she was applying for. Her job search became more focused on finding a good fit. As a result she was more productive and proactive in her search.
When she went to a job interview, she was not stuck anymore in her old messages. Instead, she was focused on what skills she could bring to the position and how she could be a benefit to prospective employers.
“What happened?” When did we become so distant with each other? We grew apart so silently and slowly over 20 years and now we are divorced. What do I do now?”
Anna never saw it coming. She is alone and feeling lost and disoriented. No longer part of a couple, she is struggling to understand what happened, and to accept that she is now single.
She lives in a different place now, both physically and emotionally. It is not the home she knew or thought she knew. Making space for this change means first clearing out her sense of failure, blame and fears of having to be on her own.
Clearing out these messages means committing to taking a hard look at the story of her marriage and relationship with her ex-husband. Her exploration will be about learning, not judging or blaming.
Healing her hurt with insight and understanding can clear a pathway for Anna to find a new beginning for herself. It will happen over time as she discards her “old stuff” and seeks to find a new fit.
The journey of change is about making space…space for seeing, understanding and letting go of messages and self-beliefs that no longer work. The process of clearing out and letting go challenges us to open our eyes and look inside ourselves in a deep and meaningful way. What do you need to make space for? What messages and self-beliefs do you need to clear in order to go forward? I am here to be a support and guide. I look forward to hearing from you.