The Crossroads

How many of you believe that “Life is what happens when you are making other plans?” Making plans is important, but counting on them to fall exactly in line can create problems. Change is a necessary part of living. But if you think that you cannot incorporate change into you life, you should know that most of you do already. Many use calendars and date books to keep track of appointments. How often have you cancelled appointments because something else happened? Plans get changed, and you go about your day. So whether or not you know it, change happens from moment to moment. Imagine changing this quote to “Change is what happens when you are making other plans.” Replacing this one words transforms this saying and helps you begin to see that change as a necessary part of living life with The Zing.

Many people often find themselves stuck in their lives because they are not able to work through making a necessary change to their lifestyle. They find themselves at a Crossroad – a defining point in life where a major life decision needs to be made. It is point in life where you can see how different decisions will take you in different directions. It is where you face change.

Do you feel that something is in the air? Becoming aware that change has to happen is like watching a tree change after summertime. At first, the leaves are still green, but the weather is starting to get cooler. You may not notice that the leaves have lost their shine and look a bit wilted; but they are still green. Slowly, the leaves begin to change and the whole tree takes on a new color. Then the leaves start to fall. Just a few at first, followed by many more, until there’s just that one hanging by a stem. Waiting for the right moment to let go. Once this last leaf is gone, the tree appears different. It has gone through its change of season and now is ready to go through the tough, cold weather. And while the tree may indeed look different, it is still the same tree. It’s firmly planted roots will stand the test of winter. In order for the tree to bloom again, it has to go through the change of season.

It’s not hard to see that change in our lives affects us just like this change of season. Many times, it begins very slowly with only slight awareness that it is even happening. Once we begin to understand that something is indeed different, the true fall colors begin to show. Letting go is the hardest part and is what people fear most. When something goes away we are left with an empty feeling. It feels a bit darker and colder, until one day we realize that the life we once had has changed. But just like the roots of this tree, we have not changed who we are. What is different is the how. How we handle what life brings our way is what changes. We begin to be aware of the season. Our faith increases, and we begin to believe that the next season will, eventually, begin. It is with this faith that we can begin to accept that change is always happening. When you come to expect change and begin to live with change, you no longer fear taking the Crossroad.

It is often where you need to question old beliefs and values, many of which you have carried along with you for a long time. Taking a look within yourself can feel fearful and anxious and can often make you afraid of taking the right Crossroad. Unfortunately, by not moving forward you lose something that you can’t take back – time.

Time is wasted because we are too scared to believe that things could or will ever get better. Time becomes a weapon that we use to sabotage ourselves. We begin to convince ourselves that things can’t change unless something else does. Happiness becomes conditional and depends upon some outside thing to happen. Tragically, people can spend lifetimes waiting for just that one thing to happen. Time sabotages happiness.

We can become overwhelmed by change if we look at it as a whole instead of a sum of its parts. It is no wonder that we fear taking a new Crossroad. It is important to consider breaking down any problem that you need to work through into smaller, simpler steps. This way, you can spend 100% of your attention and effort on solving that one part of the problem. Then you can move onto the next step. Your best efforts produce the best results. You gain confidence; you become familiar with working through change. It becomes easy to look back and see that progress has indeed happened and you are beginning to live life with The Zing.

Authored by: Ron Villano

Ron Villano, M.S., LMHC, ASAC is the leading expert in working through change. As a father who lost his 17-year old son in an auto accident, he always speaks from the heart. As a licensed psychotherapist and life coach, he counsels others on how to work through difficult times.

As a national speaker and author of The Zing, Ron has appeared before sold-out audiences across the country and is currently featured on the new Verizon FiOS1 network. His funny, captivating and approachable style creates the powerful, life-changing moments you have been looking for.

Ron's Podcast Link: Get through the holidays after the loss of a loved one.

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