Life is a series of beginnings, endings, setbacks, detours, and winding roads; no matter who you are. It would be nice if we could just make our plan and get to where we want to go without any interruptions, but that has not been my experience. Instead, I’ve had to begin again, redirect, and adjust my path countless times.
Last month, my youngest son graduated college. I’m now officially the Mom of two adult sons; 22 & 29. They have great jobs, have created happy lives and are now sharing what they have learned about life with me. It always amazes me how much we can learn about ourselves and our lives from our kids; if we have teachable spirits.
We are all embarking on new adventures. My youngest starts his job in NYC. My oldest is getting married in September. And I’m redefining myself, my business and how I serve in the world. I’m in a new season of life and ready to thrive by my own design in a different way.
Regardless of when, how, or why, it’s never too late to begin again. You can conquer a new challenge, redirect an existing focus, or come back to a passion that you abandoned years ago. It’s not always easy, usually a little scary; but always possible.
Some Reasons You May Begin Again:
Your kids have grown and are more interested in spending time with friends. Your weekends are now your own. What do you do? Rediscover your passion. Begin again.
You’re overwhelmed, exhausted and completely out of balance. You’re mind is going all the time. All you do is work and take care of everyone and everything else. Make a plan. Begin again.
You’ve lost touch with your friends. Things change, they’ve moved on. You feel isolated and alone. Make new friends. Begin again.
You’ve been living your life on auto-pilot doing all the right things. Yet, you’ve lost your way, direction, and sense of purpose. Redesign yourself. Begin again.
Your plans didn’t work out. Your business failed. You made some mistakes and bad decisions. You’ve lost your time, energy, motivation, and money. Forgive yourself and learn from it. Begin again.
You’ve gained weight and have ignored your health. You’re too tired to exercise. You’re unmotivated. You hate the way you look and feel. Take a deep breath and one tiny step. Begin again.
The foundation of your life is shaken. You get sick. A friend gets cancer. Your pet is aging. A parent dies. You question the meaning of life. Be kind to yourself. Begin again.
5 Steps To Help You Begin Again:
Step 1: Assess Your Here and Now
Before I move, I need to stop and be still. I need to know and accept where I am now. For me, that means spending some time in prayer and meditation to ask for guidance. For you, it might mean taking a walk, listening to music, or reading an uplifting message. Start with anything that calms your mind and lets you connect with your spirit. Then make a list of what is and isn’t working in your situation. I find that putting my thoughts on paper removes the emotional charge and gives me a more objective outlook.
Step 2: Evaluate Your Options
Review your list and symbolically cross out what isn’t working. You don’t want to continue that! Next create another list of possible solutions. Start by brainstorming your options without thinking, no matter how silly you think they might be.
This exercise opens your mind to the possibilities and adds a little levity to what maybe a very challenging situation. Next, ask yourself a series of questions to help narrow down your options to a few choices. The top three I start with are these.
- Is this option realistic for my life today?
- What would be involved in making this choice or change a reality?
- Does anyone else in my family need to be on board for me to make this happen?
Step 3: Choose Your Destination and The Best Way to Get There.
Once you’ve narrowed your options to three or less, it’s time to pick the one that intuitively feels the best and commit. Remember, this does not have to be your forever decision. It’s just going to be your next best step. Now you’re ready. You know where you want to go, but how will you get there? This is where you gather the information you need to pick the best way of “travel” for your life, your personality and your desires. Remember, there is always more than one way to get to the same place and your best may not be someone else’s.
Step 4: Create Your Roadmap & Time Table
You’re all set. You know where you want to go and how to get there, but what do you need to bring on your journey? What resources, tools and expertise already exists in your life and what do you need to add? Do you have a support system or a team of people that will encourage and support you as you make your changes? If not, where can you get additional support? Determine what you have or need in your life to make your transition as easy and effective as possible. Set yourself up for success as much as you can.
Step 5: Take Your First Step and Continue each Day
Now it’s time to act. You know where you want to go, how you are going to get there and have everything you need for your journey. That’s great if your journey is quick and simple, but what if it’s not? What if your change or transition or reinvention will take months or years before you reach your destination? What if you get tired or have another detour on this new adventure? What will keep you focused and moving forward?
I suggest breaking your overall journey into small, actionable steps that can be taken every day. This is something that has helped me stay on course repeatedly. Small daily doable actions make me feel more empowered to keep moving forward. I focus on the daily tasks and before I know it, I’ve created the bigger change and arrived at my destination.
Some final thoughts on your journey to begin again….
As you’re going through your journey of transition and beginning again, be sure you celebrate every step along the way. Acknowledge your courage and boldness at recreating your life and walking down a new path. It takes faith and trust to step out into the unknown. Be proud of yourself! View the process as an adventure and have fun with it.
Once you’ve reached the other side — to the new you, the new home, the new job, the new dream — you’ll experience a sense of freedom, triumph and empowerment that will stay with you always. You’ll understand how full of possibilities life is and how capable you are of recreating, redirecting and reinventing if you choose.
If you’re feeling up to it, I’d love to hear from YOU.
Have you started over in your life? Are you in the process of beginning again or going through a life transition?
Please share your experiences in the comments below.
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