Moving towards transformational change is hard. We move through change constantly, as the philosopher Heraclitus said,
No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.
Even knowing that, we still find it extremely hard to grapple with life-changing choices. The process of decision-making is complex. It requires us to access many parts of our conscious and unconscious thoughts and we cannot predict the future self we will become once the choice is made. We cannot know what we do not yet know. All we have to go on is the sense of loss, of losing that which feels familiar. Even if that ‘familiar’ is an uncomfortable one, it holds less trepidation for us than the unknowable. We can become frozen in indecision as we try to grapple with inadequate imaginings of what our lives may look like.
How do you respond to this situation when faced with it? Do you freeze? Retreat? Choose the familiar and the safe? Or do you go on?
At this point, a shift in where we place our thought energy can help carry us through. Rather than expending our mental energy trying to project ourselves into an unknown self that lies beyond the change, we can ask ourselves a much simpler question,
“Do I want to know who I may become?”
Exploring your capacity for exploration and curiosity. The other question,
“Am I ready to let go of what I have?”
Transformational change does not have to mean a razing to the ground of everything you know. Being clear about what is good for you now and what you want to take with you on this journey but be prepared to let go of what no longer serves you will help you navigate hard choices. By re-framing the decision- making process it allows you to move forward in whichever direction you choose, with consciousness and less of asense of fear and trepidation.
So, whatever that choice is for you, try not to dwell on predicting who you will be when you reach that destination, that is a futile pursuit. Rather, think what to take along for the ride.