Creating clarity and flow…
Are you like a dam? Still. Holding back. Moving only in response to people or events wading into your life?
Or, are you like a free-flowing, babbling brook that allows the rocks and pebbles in your life path to hone who you are as a person on your journey to fulfilling your purpose in life?
It’s the difference between feeling stuck and having a sense of energy, direction and vitality.
In my last post, I stated that the first step necessary to Creating Long-Lasting Change when you are in Mid-Life Transition is to Review, Acknowledge, Accept and Release. I also spoke about how that life review is crucial in releasing what no longer fits for you and I outlined a simple release process for you.
The 2nd Step to Creating Long-Lasting Change
The second step to Creating Long-Lasting Change when you are in a Mid-Life Transition is getting very connected to your values.
What are the things, the attributes or the elements that absolutely, positively must be a part of your life in order for you to feel vital and alive?
Your values are one of the common threads that run throughout your life, but they can shift in response to events or traumas that occur. Values that may have been lower on the scale can move up in priority.
For example, when your last child leaves the nest, you may find that all of a sudden you’re feeling a need to reconnect with who you are, your sense of identity, and having more of an impact in the world.
Or, if you suffer the loss of a family member, relationships and their place in your life, may rise up in priority. You may be less willing to spend time with people who suck your energy or whom you don’t really like. On the flip side, you may value the time you have with those you love more because your awareness has been raised as to how sweet and precious life is and how quickly those relationships can be removed.
If you experience illness, most likely you’ll find that all of a sudden you value your health and well-being more than ever.
These are all examples of values that you probably already have. But can you see how they might shift in response to events in your life?
Moving forward in your life in a powerful way, and making decisions that are in alignment with who you are, requires being very connected to what’s important to you.
It forms the basis for all of your decisions. You begin to filter out the opportunities or the people or the things that come your way that don’t fit or align with what’s really important to you. You’re more conscious of where you’re headed and in ensuring that your choices are in harmony with that.
IDENTIFY YOUR VALUES
Here are some steps to get your juices going:
Step 1. Identify the times when you were at your happiest.
Find examples from both your career and personal life. This will ensure some balance in your answers.
- What were you doing?
- Were you with other people? Who?
- What other factors contributed to your happiness?
Step 2. Think back to some times when you were feeling unfulfilled or unhappy.
- What was missing?
- What were you feeling the need for that wasn’t present?
- Have you ever found yourself saying “I am never doing ____ again!”? If so, what was that?
Step 3. Do a Mind Map or free-form brain dump.
- Take a sheet of paper and just start writing out all of the elements or values that are important to you. Get them all out on paper.
- Then, as you look at the values on the page pick your top 10; those that feel like they are the most important. Write those down on another piece of paper.
- From that list pick your top 3.
Yes I know, this is where it gets hard, especially if you’re brutally honest with yourself (and if you’re not, than why do this process to begin with?!). But this is what creates the clarity that is so important in moving forward.
- Now prioritize those top three. When you’re doing that prioritization, think of your number one value as the one thing you really could not survive without. It has to be the one value that no matter what, it’s imperative for you have in order to live a life that has meaning for you. That’s the only way it should be a number one. The other values fall behind in the same manner.
You may be surprised at what emerges for you. My clients usually are.
I do this process myself every now and then, especially when I’m feeling stuck in some area, and it’s always really helpful in creating clarity. I just completed the process in fact as part of my annual review.
Last year I had set the intention to have more FUN, to take more time off and I did! In doing my review I realized how important it is for me to maintain that as a part of my life and that how I spend my time is of great importance to me as well as who I spend it with.
That’s powerful stuff! Having that kind of clarity is so crucial in your decision-making. You’ll find that you’re just not willing to “settle” for anything less.
How do you know when you’re “settling” if you don’t know with crystal clarity what you value?
All of this leads into the next phase or Step 3 of Creating Long-Lasting Change when you’re in Mid-Life Transition. It flows into crafting a life of passion and purpose.
I’d love it if you’d use the share buttons below to share your thoughts on this subject. I’d love to hear how this is landing for you, what works and of course any questions you may have on the subject.
With good energy,
P.S. If you’re finding all of this intriguing but finding it hard to get started, I’m here to help you. I’ve even created a program that assists you with all of these steps. I’ll be sharing that soon. So stay tuned!
Debra W. Guttas, Mid-Life Transition Doula™, HTP
“Are you in a mid-life transition? I provide emotional, mental and spiritual support in the ‘birthing’ of your new life path.”
Debra Guttas is Author of the forthcoming book “Personal & Business Success through the 7 Gateways – Spiritual & Practical Tools for Crafting Your Life from the Inside Out”