ERP 002: Listening And Deciding (When You Are Not Sure What Step To Take In Relationship)
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Many times we know we need to take action, but we don’t know what step to take. Or we feel that change needs to occur, but we feel too overwhelmed to take a step. Here are some steps to consider that may help you feel more clear and inspired to take that first step. In this Episode, I offer a 5 step process for how to take action if you are feeling stuck, overwhelmed, or unsure.
1. BE OPEN TO POSSIBILITIES: What if I let go of my attachment to things being a particular way? Ask yourself, what would (my idea of what I want – my example “going snowboarding”) __________ allow me to feel? This will help you get in touch will your underlying desire or need (my example – “going snowboarding would allow me to feel the outdoors and experiencing fun and play.”
- Stages of Change (5 steps that people take when making a change – which comes from research from working with people with addictions. However, the model is relevant for people attempting to create change and/or break habits)
- “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” Albert Einstein
2. TAKE RESPONSIBILITY: When we have a need, want, or desire, we take ownership for it. When we realize we are not happy with something, If we are not liking our experience, we have choice in the matter. We decide who, where, and when we participate in a dynamic with someone else. It is up to us to be responsible and create the change we are desiring.
- What is your number one complaint (in relationship)? (example – “being criticized)
- I am unconsciously committed to __________ (your complaint). (example – “I am unconsciously committed to being criticized.”)
- I am now consciously committed to _____________ (the opposite for your complaint). (example – “ I am now consciously committed to being accepted.”)
3. DECIDE: Making a commitment. Not just considering the step or option, but really deciding – “I am going to do this.”
- Deciding involves action – we are going to do something. Considering is thinking about the possibility of taking action.
- Trusting that more opportunity and/or information will become available by taking the first step. Our responsibility is to take the step that we can take.
- Empowered to do something about it (disengage, ask for what you want, advocate for yourself)
- Definite – staying firm in your decision
4. ONE SMALL STEP:
- Trusting that support will be available. Not worrying about the whole picture. If it probable or possible.
- Focus on the part you do know. Break it down.
- What step can I take?
- What is my next move?
5. THINK LONG TERM:
- Pain or discomfort that I have associated with the thing we are not doing (examples – avoiding someone, or not eating sugar
- What is the long-term cost of continuing to __________? (example – avoiding calling my grandmother. Distance, hurt)
- What is the long-term benefit of ______________? (example calling grandmother. Long-term benefit: I would feel closer and connected to her. We would have a better relationship.)
- Redirect your focus from the immediate discomfort to the long-term cost or long-term benefit as a motivator and action.
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