Have you been forced out of a job? Are you facing a health issue? A victim of a crime? Accident? Have you lost a loved one unexpectedly? Then you know that forced change embraces your life in an instant.
And that is where my message starts. I experienced “forced change” when my 17-year old son, Michael, died in an auto accident. But, years later, I now see that losing Michael wasn’t the only reason my life hit rock bottom. I wound up down there because the forced change took hold of me and began to drag me down. Naturally, any forced change is a challenge to face. But I continued to get dragged deeper and deeper because I felt like I had nothing to grab onto. It felt like no one or no thing would ever matter again. I felt truly empty of everything including life itself.
And now I know why. And this is the heart of my message to you.
You have an entire lifetime worth of ideas, beliefs and values. Everyone does; and I certainly had quite a full Garage myself. I knew that many of these thoughts were in desperate need of change; and in some cases, I knew that I needed to change them. But working against these well-intentioned plans to change were equally powerful negative and fearful thoughts. So I was feeling stuck between wanting help and the fear of letting go and heading into the unknown.
So many people spend too much time in this state of mind. Not quite happy, not quite sad. Grouchy at everything and nothing all at the same time. In short, they are just moving along. The danger is that when something unexpected enters the picture, it can drag life right to the bottom before you know it because the life they are leading just can’t hold up to the heavy weight of forced change.
This is why I now say that my son, Michael, taught me more about living life than I had ever imagined. I was so completely stripped of everything that the only thing left to do was to start completely over. As I began to recover, I learned how to make new choices. Choices that were based upon what I wanted in my life. I am here today because I used all my energy to rebuild every part of my life.
But as I look back now, I can see that my journey could have been less traumatic if I was living life differently before it all happened. And that is what my message is all about. Going from living life to loving the life you life… before it’s too late. You can avoid hitting rock bottom when forced change knocks on the door by choosing to change your thoughts one moment at a time long before tragedy strikes.
What can you do right now to be ready to fight through a life-changing situation? Take just one small issue in your life and take one small step to fix it. Imagine making that overdue phone call. Choose to throw out one cigarette instead of inhaling it. Make your cup of coffee at home and put the money you save in the vacation fund. And when you are done with that one small thing, then do another. Choosing to make a change one moment at a time will add up to great change in a short time.
Forced change often arrives with no warning. And when it does, it will take every bit of your own personal power to get through it. So make time today to bank some of that personal power for when you need it. Where do you get that from? You get it by making the choice to stop wasting energy avoiding the change, and choosing to enjoy the success that comes from accomplishing that which you feared the most.