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Moving Forwards

September 26, 2012

By Jacinta Hin

When we are ready for a new direction in life, we have to create space for it. Few people can start a new career on top of an existing one or begin a new relationship while still fully committed to someone else. Something needs to give.

Transitions help us let go of what’s in the way of moving forwards. The lure of the possibility of a different reality, even if felt ever so slightly, often awakens a desire to be free from the constraints of the current one or the burden of the past. A desire that opens the way to explore patterns, habits, beliefs and situations that no longer inspire or keep us chained to a life that no longer works.

Let's have a look at what that could be:

  1. Old paradigms and perspectives that keep us stuck and disconnected from who we really are at our core. The idea, for instance, that job security is more important than pursuing a career that is close to one’s heart.
  2. Behaviors and habits that pull us backwards and prevent us from developing more empowering ones.
  3. Self-images and beliefs that hold us back. We might, for instance, believe that we don’t have what it takes to pursue our dreams, or that we have to stick to choices once made even if they do not make much sense anymore.
  4. Circumstances that no longer work and could even be detrimental to our mental and spiritual health: a harmful relationship, an unbalanced lifestyle, an uninspiring circle of friends, and so on.
  5. Situations that stop us in our growth and the belief that we cannot get out of it. We might believe we need the financial security of a job we hate or feel obliged to keep the promise of our wedding vows, even if the love is long gone and our self-esteem low.
  6. Past realities we cannot go back to. People we hold on to, although they have moved on. Memories that continue to haunt us. Acting if we are still in our twenties, while our body tells us otherwise.
  7. Unresolved trauma we have to confront and work through.
  8. And sometimes it is sheer comfort we must let go of.  There is nothing wrong with our life, yet something is missing.  At some point we might get bored, even dissatisfied with life as we know it. If we do not listen to these messages, our comfort could become uncomfortable or even turn into resentment.

Transitions provide excellent opportunities to examine any, some or all of the above.

An example:

It's getting harder and harder to drag yourself out of bed every morning to show up in time for an unexciting job.

When exploring why you're stuck in a dead-end work situation you might find that certain beliefs about what you need to maintain a certain lifestyle (circumstances) to feel comfortable are in the way of allowing yourself a new perspective about what is most important to you.

Another example:

You're overweight, low on energy, and dealing with health challenges. Every time you feel unhappy about your situation, you grab a chocolate bar, giving in to your need for comfort.

When asking yourself why you cannot get out of this self-sabotaging spiral, you find that a deeply rooted belief that you lack discipline (self-image) is preventing you from kick-starting new health habits and giving up the bad ones that keep you locked up in an unhealthy body prone to sickness (circumstances).

When you know what is keeping you stuck, you can challenge it. You can give yourself permission to change your perspective and your habits, to challenge your beliefs, re-arrange your circumstances, step out of a situation, let go of a past reality and give up on impeding comfort. The first step is simply to acknowledge your situation and to know that you have choices.

In fact, the moment you're willing to let go of something, you're already moving forwards.


LABELS:   Believes   Letting Go   Transition  
About the author: Jacinta Hin was born in the Netherlands and has been living in Tokyo, Japan, since 1989. Her professional background is in human resources, career management and coaching. She is passionate about helping people, herself included, discover new perspectives of possibility, move to embracing and working with their transitions, and designing and realizing changes aligned with who they truly are and what they truly want from their lives.
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