A simple Guide to inspire you to tap into self-awareness, so you can choose calmer ways of reacting and more confident ways of being
Spending a fair amount of time reflecting on the year 2018 which for me had many up’s and down’s I felt that I really spend more than half of the year on auto-pilot until I switched it off in late July! We all have an internal auto-pilot, an invisible steering wheel that keeps us repeating the same patterns and behaviours over and over again and often we do not even notice it. This rings especially true when we are managing unexpected stress, when we have made a plan and then nothing goes as planned and we scramble to figure out how to deal with the change running mindlessly and we start to firefight rather than letting the energy pass through – in short it gets exhausting to live up to our own unreasonable expectations!
In early July of 2018, I experienced a new form of roadblock, created by my mind and the excessive amount of personal expectation I had placed on myself. I was ready to experience a successful summer which to me meant, being able to focus on my coaching business, have a smooth and well run operations at the Hotel I manage and be able to truly enjoy my summer, spending time outside golfing and being present to my relationship. Well, what I actually experienced was utter chaos, self-judgement and overwhelm. I felt stressed and frantic and I was ready to throw in the towel and retire from everything and anything, letting the autopilot take over completely as I had fallen back into the habit of trying to proof I can do it all and just push harder and work harder…..and as I did, I just got more stressed and feeling more out of control. The tension between my own expectation of what should be and what I experienced became overpowering, until I had a major breakdown and at last allowed this moment in my life to get what it needed so the energy was able to move through!
The tension between your experience and your expectation is stress ~ Ed Halliwell
Timing could probably not have been better for this to happen as the day I broke down, I found myself on my way to San Diego to attend a Mastery Retreat with my Coaching Tribe with the topic of Freedom! I went from autopilot and pushing hard, to stepping back, letting go of any expectations and simply observing, feeling and choosing how I want to move forward. And so for the rest of 2018, I decided it was time to switch off the autopilot for good using this simple 4-step system to allow me to experience calmer ways of reacting and a more confident way of BE-ing:
Step 1: Plan for the Change to happen
When we resist against what is changing, the tension only increases making us feel more uneasy and stressed. To avoid feeling this anxiousness and stress around unexpected change, start by simply acknowledging the change in what you expected and what you are experiencing. And most importantly always plan for change to occur – this will pre-frame that there is a chance your expectations will not be met and this allows you to experience the change in a much calmer way, increasing your confidence level!
Step 2: Give the moment what it needs
Spend sometime to notice when you are getting stressed, pay attention to when your own expectation and experience don’t match. When we experience stress, often our instinct reaction is resistance, as previously mentioned this only increases the tension. Instead of resisting how you feel, breath through it. Give the moment what it needs by allowing to fully feel and experience the moment, this will clear the path for the energy to fully move through! Have empathy for yourself – tell yourself ” I get it, I feel with you”
Step 3: Become an observer
Taking action when you are feeling stressed means your are letting your autopilot react, instead of being swept away by your inner critic (you know that voice that tells you it’s not possible) choose to become an observer. Step back and allow yourself to become an observer of the situation – imagine seeing an image of yourself in this situation – notice what happens and you will start to see the gap between your expectation of what should be and what you are experiencing. This is also a practice of self-compassion – resist the urge to punish yourself for feeling a certain way, and have empathy – feel with yourself as you observe, don’t be sorry for yourself.
Step 4: Let Go and Move forward
Ask yourself ” Who am I being in this situation and what do I want to experience differently?. Let go of the expectation of what should be, what you were not able to achieve, what you experienced differently and then choose how you want to move forward. This will allow you to act with focus and clarity rather than letting your autopilot continue to steer the wheel. Take a moment to learn and acknowledge yourself for allowing your mind to be cleared and for your consciousness to return to make choices. You will feel both empowered and calmer as you move forward!
Applying those steps is a starting point to changing how you lead your life, choosing more calmer ways of reacting and a more confident way of being . Switching off the autopilot is a conscious choice – so ask yourself, are you ready to turn mindfulness on in 2019?
“Presence is a state of inner spaciousness” ~ Eckhart Tolle
As we are ringing in the New Year, my Intention for 2020 is to create an experience of spaciousness for myself and others. If you are looking to create a more powerful experience and clarity for the coming year – I’d love to invite you to join me for my upcoming Group Program “Lost to Purpose” – enrolment is opening soon so let’s chat
Wishing you a Happy New Year – may you find your best experience of BE-ing in 2020!