One of the comments I hear from many midlife women, is that they believe it’s better to be secure in their lives than happy – to stay ‘stuck’ rather than go for something different. This often means spending their lives with the ‘wrong’ person because they don’t want to be alone or they want someone to look after them financially, or both. Or maybe they have spent their lives in the wrong job because it pays the bills. What a waste! The only thing keeping us stuck in a rut is fear – fear that by making a change we may end up with something not as good as what we currently have. We are scared of moving into the unknown, of doing something different. Fear comes from limiting beliefs that we have about ourselves and our abilities. In fact, the consequences of our making a change are often built up in our minds to mean something far worse than the actual reality of the situation. Here’s a great acronym for fear:
Our minds are brilliant at creating the worse case scenario in our heads and then that’s what we begin to focus on as our reality. Soon we forget that it’s not true. We make huge assumptions about what may or may not be true based upon our belief systems. And guess what, our beliefs are generalisations passed onto us by those who influenced us in our early years. They are NOT REAL. The reality is very different if we are prepared to find out and start the journey!
Does this ring any bells with you? Or someone that you know?
What’s important in your relationship and career?
I am going to show you a simple technique for finding out what’s most important to you in terms of your relationship and career. You can then assess how your current relationship and career shape up. Or, if you’re not in a relationship, I guarantee that you will feel much more confident about choosing the right person. What’s more, you’ll take the appropriate steps to make sure that the relationship you do choose will be more successful in the long term. If you’re at a crossroads in your career, or wanting to embark upon a new one, this Attitude will help you make the right decision in future.
Exercise 4: Am I Being True to Myself?
This exercise will identify your values in a relationship and your career. Our values represent what is most important to us and they are what motivate us to take action. Base your answers not on the relationship or career you are in now but, rather, your ideal relationship. Of course, if your current relationship or career is good then many of these values will overlap. That is absolutely fine. Start with your relationship first. Ask yourself the simple question:
‘What’s important to me about my relationship?’
Keep asking yourself the same question even when your answers begin to dry up. This is because your conscious values come out first, as they are at surface level. Your unconscious values and those that you are least aware of are likely to come out later and may prove to be the most important of all the values you identify. We want abstract nouns such as love, sharing, freedom, trust, security, passion and so on. Then put them into priority order with the most important first. You might notice that some of the later values are top of your list!
Then ask yourself how does your current relationship stack up? If you are in a relationship, I suggest that you go through your list values and score your current relationship out of 10 against each value.
I normally break the scores into three categories:
0–4 High risk area for the relationship
5–7 Medium risk area for the relationship
8–10 Low risk area for the relationship.
Ask yourself what steps can you take to improve your scores with your current relationship. Ask yourself ‘Is it worth saving?’ If the answer is yes then really go for it!
Then do the same with your career. Enjoy becoming truer to yourself!
Photo credit: Gregory Szarkiewicz