Like the ever-changing seasons, we too experience change and transition throughout our lives. For some of us change is easy – an “easy come, easy go” kind of mentality. For others of us, change is incredibly difficult and is resisted with much fervour.
Did you know that we never just change? There is a whole process to change that is necessary or it won’t happen. In the next couple of weeks, I will be sharing the Stages of Change with you. Understanding how change happens gives us better insight into why some changes are so hard and yet others are fairly easy and painless.
- Pre-contemplation is the stage of change where we have no intention to change. We may not even know where or why we need to make a change. Perhaps we don’t even recognize that one needs to be made. Other times, we know change needs to occur, but it’s just off the radar because it is so low on the priority scale. Because it’s not even on our radar, there is no contemplating a change to occur in the next 6 months. This stage has an unknown length of time. If we do not have the awareness of what we need to change and our mindset is closed to hearing from others of how our behaviours impact them, this stage of pre-contemplation can create huge frustration, hurt and betrayal for people around us. Especially if we never see the negative impact upon others or our environment of our relationship patterns, our habits, our behaviours of conflict or even our shadow orientations.
- Contemplating change happens when we begin to recognize that our behaviours and relationships cause us greater pain than they do pleasure. At that point, we begin to be open to letting go of what no longer provides pleasure and we begin to contemplate change. Even so, this stage can last two weeks to several years as we seriously consider making changes of behaviour within the next 6 months. However, we may not yet be convinced that change is completely necessary – our pain is not that bad – and the pleasure of change may not be worth our perceived pain of change. In fact, we may barely even be aware that our pain is connected to our behaviour. Fear is common in this stage as people vacillate between awareness, denial and the realization a significant change needs to happen.
The reality is that our souls manifest change in a timing that our egos cannot control. So if we are not awake and in tune with our soul essence, we may not be aware of the flow toward change with which our soul is leading. The process of change can then feel abrupt and forced upon us, rather than the gentle course of contemplation and preparation before action even takes place. Not listening deeply has a huge price on our lives.
I believe that spiritual practice and nurturing our spirituality prepares us to remain resilient, creative and patient in the process of change. Surrendering to change that our soul is manifesting is simpler and easier, though not less challenging.
Where are you in the process of change this fall? Are you getting ready to make a change? Or are you still in the mindset that a change is unnecessary or too risky? Do you need more time to sort things out?
Remember, you don’t have to do this alone. If you want someone to walk your process of change with you, call or email me to set up an appointment and we’ll get you started…