Tag: communication

Ashley Mason Equestrian Riders

The Secret To Change

Ashley Mason Equestrian Riders

My daughter, Zoa, and the Ashley Mason Equestrian riders getting ready for the Oakland, IA Independence Day parade

WE ARE NOT POWERLESS  

This weekend someone shared with me they weren’t feeling very celebratory or even independent this Independence Day.  As we spoke, I could feel the frustration and overwhelm – in both of us.

There is no stopping the waterfall of circumstances  and feelings from happening.
Life is a continuation of them, and they come for us whether we’re ready or not!

So what do we do when they’re disappointing, intense or feel overwhelming?
How do we cope?  How do we affect change?

We can start by allowing grief and choosing acceptance

Accepting something is NOT the same as liking or agreeing with it.
It’s just acknowledging it for what it is so we can see our options clearly (through the fog of intense emotions) and choose a path forward. 

Grief is a response to loss, and may express differently depending on what is lost.
For instance, if we can’t see well enough to safely drive ourselves as we age, there can be a loss of independence.  When we experience a loss of something dear to us – like safety, privacy, autonomy, etc – we need to allow ourselves (or our loved ones) to grieve the loss so we can eventually move forward.  

It’s also key to remember that we co-exist with other people!  Yep, read that again.
There is no way all the people will agree on all the things all the time.  So, we’ll inevitably find ourselves in situations we don’t like, agree with or want.  

When our reality is not what we want it to be, we have choices…  

  1.  We can complain and commiserate with those who agree with us.
  2.  We can passively resign, convincing ourselves we are helpless and powerless.
  3.  We can belittle, name-call, use threatening or forceful tactics to try to change the minds of those who disagree.
  4.  We can respectfully ask questions and listen, and let people disagree. 
  5.  We can ACCEPT it, regulate our strong emotions, sort out and TAKE ACTION on our options. 

Likely, we’ll alternate between a few of these 😉
The point is, we can consciously choose how we deal with things. 

In case they didn’t jump out at you, 4 & 5 are the most productive.  We get defensive when we hear things we don’t like, which shuts down listening.
Dialogue creates change and requires BOTH listening and speaking.
 

There’s also no way around the universal truth that we all collectively contribute to our reality.

So, we are naturally the exact opposite of helpless or powerless – without even trying.

When taking action seems too overwhelming, just start with yourself.  The ripple of change outward is a given. 

The natural order of change is:

  1. the individual
  2. the family
  3. the community and beyond

I believe it was Socrates who said, “The secret to change is to focus all your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”  So when we find ourselves not getting anywhere, we usually just need to change what we’re spending our energy on.

     Below are links to two supportive and grounding recordings for you.  Here’s to conscious choices and spending our energy wisely!
     Much love, Suzanne

 

Here is a 6 minute relaxation and reflective practice with a focus on independence.
Here is a 5 minute metta meditation to help foster understanding, trust, and unconditional love.

If you need one-on-one support, schedule some coaching.

Find more helpful articles and videos from OPY here.