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Breaking Through Chaos

Updated: Mar 5, 2019

Photo Credit: Hayley Evans

Whenever a period of my life seems turbulent, I believe it is a good time to take stock of who I am and where am I going. I ask myself questions like “what have I done to attract this kind of energy/event?”. Inevitably, it means looking back to past decisions and following the manifestation of the events. It also means doing a clean up of energy, whether it be friends, partners, habits (diet, work, exercise, thought patterns), the trajectory of travel.

So, starting with friends…often this is the toughest exercise because it means having to really look at relationships that we have become complacent with. We have to fess up to being complacent about how we treat ourselves and other people. It also means taking the necessary steps to end relationships that no longer serve you. This, like all growth, is never easy but the relief makes it so worth it. I look at my circle of influence and ask myself the following questions:

  • Which relationships are in highest and best?

  • Which relationships truly support me, in love and light?

  • Which relationships feel like obligation?

  • Which relationships feel like love?

  • Which relationships are unbalanced?

  • Which relationships are toxic?

Then, moving to diet and exercise…I ask myself similar questions to find out what has not been the best for me and what I actually need now. It usually ends up with a period of detox, which creates the platform for the healthier habits.

  • Which foods make me feel good?

  • Which foods make me feel bloated and sludgy?

  • Which drinks make me feel lethargic, anxious, beat myself up (mentally)?

  • Where is my body aching?

  • Why is my body aching?

  • What kind of movement does my body want?

Next, work or career…

  • Have I made the progress (wide definition) I intended to make?

  • What has fueled my progress?

  • What has stalled my progress?

  • What hasn’t been touched in the last year? Move it to archive or delete?

  • Which work colleagues have I not been in contact with for the last year, do I need to re-establish contact?

  • Which work colleagues have I been in contact with - are they actually worth my energy and time

  • Clean out contacts, Google Drive and emails

Finally, thought patterns an decisions…this is really tough to hold myself honest and accountable:

  • What are my dominant thoughts (a) first thing in the morning (b) during quiet moments when I am in between tasks (c) last thing at night?

  • Do they lift me up or drag me down?

  • Where do I go with these thoughts - is it productive and healthy?

  • Are these thoughts real concerns? Which are illusions? Which are cognitive distortions?

  • Where am I trying to prove myself wrong? Which are my truth?

  • Ok, what can I do to change the thoughts - what mantras are needed to retrain my brain?

For decisions, it is an exercise in looking to the past so I can put the pieces together and reframe the story:

  • What decisions did I make to put myself in situations where this turmoil may be the outcome? (Usually I can identify it pretty quickly.)

  • What did I learn?

  • Do I want to be in the situation again?

  • What can I do to make better decisions going forward?

These questions basically provide the data needed to make an informed decision and move forward in the direction I want to go. This may mean as little pivot or, completely change in direction. It may also show that everything is actually just fine and little change is required. Either is fine, as long as it is my truth that resonates in my body, and clearly is in my highest and best.

Coming from a place of our truth makes commitment to change much easier and sustainable. Although we dread making changes that pull us out of the comfort of naiveté and ignorance, knowing that it is in our highest and best provides the extra fuel and drive to push forward.

Remember, that breaking a habit and installing a healthier behavior takes 21-28 consecutive days of consistent practice, each day.

Commit to your highest and best. Commit to the life you want. Take charge and create your own reality.

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