Last week I talked about the first phase of change. I call it caterpillar soup, because when I’m in that place I feel like mush. You can revisit last week’s post here.
This phase can sometimes feel never ending. But I promise you, just like winter moves into spring, everyone moves out of phase one. There are some common early signs when someone is moving from the first phase to the second. A person will suddenly look around at life and feel like nothing “fits” anymore. There may be a desire to change appearances like get a new haircut or completely redo your wardrobe. Maybe the person is suddenly interested in new hobbies that have never sparked any interest before. These are the beginning urges of phase two.
We are in the beginning phases of rebirth. But rebirth into what, you may ask? A caterpillar biologically knows in its cells that it is going to transition into a butterfly. Those pieces start coming together and atoms start shifting and aligning into this new form. And that’s precisely what needs to happen to you in phase two, dear one.
Phase two is all about dreaming about what your new life will be and then laying down the plans to get there.
One of my favorite tools in my coaching practice is what Martha Beck calls “Ideal Day.” In this tool, the coach will guide the client into a meditative state. From this place, they project their brain 3-5 years into the future. They imagine waking up on their ideal ordinary day. It’s not a holiday or a vacation, it’s just a regular ol’ day. The coach guides the client to see the day unfold before them, describing details using the five senses so that they can fully picture themselves there. What are they doing? What do they see? What colors? What can they touch and feel? Is there anything to smell? You get the idea. The coach will take the client through the day until the end.
When I do this exercise as the coach, I read back what my client described so that she/he can hear what really resonates. This is our opportunity to pull out the important visuals and moments so we can anchor that into the brain in reality now. What images were really clear? What do you really want to happen?
My role as a coach is to help connect those images into action steps to help you get what you want in the future. Maybe I encourage them to make a vision board so that it something they can see on a regular basis. Maybe I have them set aside a time each day to reflect on these images and feel what it was like during our coaching session.
In addition to using visualization, I am often encouraging my clients to play and experiment in real life. When was the last time you had an urge to do something but decided not to because you were worried you wouldn’t be good enough or that you’d look ridiculous or that you’d fail?
This is how Elizabeth Gilbert found her way back to writing novels after Eat Pray Loveand the follow up Committed. She was plagued by the fear of failing after the success of Eat Pray Love, but she wanted to garden. She wanted her hands in the dirt. So, she did. Before you knew it, she was studying botany and the spark of her novel The Signature of All Thingswas born.
If you are in the place where you are coming out of feeling like caterpillar soup and you’re starting to wonder what’s next, I invite you to play. What feels like fun? What seems to be calling you right now? Don’t judge it, just listen to your urge and play with the idea.
I don’t know what will come out of play for you. The only way to know is to try. And let yourself engage, and give yourself permission to change, if that’s what’s going to happen. You’ve already gone through a big change, the worst is over! Now you get to play and explore.
What would feel like play today? Comment below and let me know! Now is the time to take the things that feel like fun to you and flirt with it a little bit. Find a class or a buddy that would come with you to try something new. What kind of play can you get into this week? I encourage you to schedule a time before Sunday dedicated to playing with an urge that you have.
Did you find this blog post helpful? Do you want to increase the love in your life? It all starts with yourself, which is why I created a simple self love meditation. Claim yours here and get more love immediately.