By Shawn McAndrew
“When you’re serious about change” is not only Hoffman’s slogan indicating that we support and facilitate people making changes in their lives, it’s also about what we, as individuals, encounter each day – when change happens. One day the sun is shining warm, the sky a welcoming blue. Next day, we awake to a crisp nip in the air, and leaves are turning gold and red. There is no rhyme or reason that we can touch to make us know when seasons will shift, it’s just something that happens; what we can feel.
And when it comes to changes in our selves, our lives, we can’t always anticipate or know when they’ll happen or what causes them, but we do have a choice on how we act or react to them. Like changing seasons, life or mood changes can unsettle us, push our buttons, and make patterns rise to the surface.
What To Do When Change Happens
Today may have started on a happy note, seeming to hold all the good that one might wish. Then someone says something negative, or a tragedy occurs. How do these things change our moods? How do we deal with what is said or happens? Do we lash out at the person who makes a hurtful comment? Do we go into hiding as a way of coping with a tragedy?
However we react, later we might be met with the consequences of those reactions. Why do we fight fire with fire; avoid the unavoidable; not acknowledge our true feelings? We do so out of fear, abandonment, betrayal, feeling less than, loss, etc. These are all patterns that we can go into as a way of reacting to circumstances that interrupt our happiness.
Making The Most Of Change
If only we had a way to stop ourselves in our tracks. Oh wait, we do! With the awareness we gained in the Process – learning what are the patterns that are kicking up, knowing what pushes our buttons, getting the tools we need to confront and release what takes us off-center and disconnected from Spirit – we can take action to regain happiness, to disconnect from that pesky reactive state (aka, the dark side).
We each know how to unplug those dark side messages and patterns that make us unhappy: Reconnect with your spirit. If you can, walk away from the triggers. If you can’t, do a Dark Side Fling (instructions below) to disconnect the patterns that are causing you to react. Call a buddy, do a Quadrinity Check-in – whatever tool or practice you can tap into at that moment, do it! You’ll thank yourself as you begin to feel connected again, happier and centered in your Spirit.
The nip of autumn may be soon at our heels, but the bite of unhappiness – like the season – is temporary. We get to choose to do something about how we are in the world.
Some resources for When Change Happens:
Dark Side check visualization
Start an Appreciation & Gratitude practice
The Dark Side Fling
You might want to have someone read this to you, or record it and play it back so you can do the visualization without distraction.
Close your eyes. You’ve felt that part of you that resists love, growth, change, goodness, new information. Imagine that resistance – all the different kinds you use – as separate from you. Allow the resistance to take a physical form – the form of a monster. Imagine that monster standing in front of you. Maybe you’ve even seen this monster before. Now put your hand out in front of you palm up. A rope appears in your hand. Take that rope and tie that rope around the waist of the monster. Notice that one end of the rope is longer. Grab that longer end of the rope in one hand. Get a firm grip and start whirling the monster around and around above you – watch it rise up off the ground. Now let the rope go and see the monster sail off into the universe. Breathe a sigh of relief as you check in and notice how you’re feeling right now. And open your eyes.
- Use this Dark Side Fling any time you feel resistance controlling you
- Whenever you need a rope, it will be in your pocket
- This action gives a physical release from the negative hold of resistance
- Learning and growing is easier without resistance
- You have a unique essence that is unprogrammed and totally positive