Updates from new blog at www.nextchapternewlife.com/blog/

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Introducing Next Chapter, New Life

Hi, I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Dorothy Tannahill Moran and I am now open for business as a life coach focusing on changes in your life and retirement readiness.

So what, pray tell, is that all about? My aim is to help people go through the process of defining their goals and actions around major changes and transition they are making in their life. Facing transition can be a daunting task. It's uncomfortable and can be frightening. At the same time, it can be exciting. No matter what reactions it might invoke in you, just know that I'm here to help you navigate the murky waters and help you along the way.

To many people, it doesn't make sense that making a change can be so difficult to do. Change is hard, if it was easy, we would all lose weight, stop smoking, exercise and quit that dreaded job. As humans, we are constantly seeking to get comfortable with our surroundings and situations. When we move into a new place, we work hard to unpack, put everything away and find the new favorite spot to sit. We're seeking comfort. It's one thing to make a change; it's totally different to experience the transition that comes with it. It's the transition that we are avoiding.

So, what is transition and why do we avoid it? Change is an action or event. Examples of this: you move to a new place, you get a new job. Transition is the emotional and mental "reorganization" that you always go through when you make a change, no matter how big or small the change might be. The process is inevitable and not always pleasant. You can feel insecure about your decision or even your own capabilities. You might feel sad about the lose of your previous life and all that went with it.

Let me illustrate what I'm saying with this example. Almost all of us at one time or another has either had a bad job situation and if you haven't you know of someone who has. Despite how bad the various aspects were, you might of "hung in there" hoping it would improve. You might have gone through a stage of wanting to leave but feeling hopeless about what else you might do, or that you really had to stay because you had one more thing to accomplish or felt disloyal to the people that have become your friends. I could fill a page with the various stories we tell ourselves. At the end of the day, being in a miserable situation is at least something we are familiar with and know what to expect. A new job would mean all kinds of other stories. You would no longer know your job; you'd be in a learning curve. You wouldn't have friends surrounding you anymore. You don't know if the new boss is good or bad. There might be other bigger ego feeding things like, people not treating you like the alpha dog you were. Again, the stories about "the new thing" are numerous. As you examine these less-than-positive stories, this is the partial list that makes up transition. These are emotional-mental issues. They aren't always comfortable. BUT, the rewards of making a change can be huge, so we make these changes with the full knowledge that once we make the change and slog our way through the transition, that life will be much better.

People that write about transition often say that you can't speed up transition because it is about an emotional process and that happens at its own rate. I believe this concept in part. I have found it comforting to understand the process and to know that taking action to move myself forward helps immensely. Over the course of my life as an operations manager for a high tech firm, change was a constant. I have dealt with change and transition for over 21 years for myself and hundreds of people in my organizations. I have found that the combination of transition process knowledge and action plans is good, effective approaches.

Enter, Next Chapter, New Life. I purposely picked that name because each of us will face finishing the chapter we're in and moving on to the next one. As humans, we are in a constant state of change. It is my purpose to help you define that next chapter in such a way that you'll be excited about your life to come.