Today we’re talking about Fresh Starts. In this special training, we’ll discover what it means to make a fresh start, why new beginnings are essential, and simple ways to reboot your life.
This training is highly interactive, so go ahead and grab a notebook and a pen, and let’s get started.
Life is full of chapters and phases, and most of us have many of them in the course of a single lifetime. Every one of these chapters has…you guessed it: A beginning, a middle and an end. As one chapter closes out, it often signals the beginning of another. These transition points are golden opportunities to clean up what was, accept what is, and step excitedly into the newness of what will be. After all, as singer Dan Wilson of the band Semisonic said so eloquently:
“Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.”
Sometimes the chapters of your life are action packed and full of pizzazz. You’re going, growing, and getting things done. You’re making your mark on the world.
Some chapters are more spacious and calm. This can be a wonderful time of reflection and introspection, while you imagine what’s next. These times are also important if you’ve recently made a change from something demanding and rigorous like a career change, a marriage or divorce, a new child, or a move cross country.
To have the most fulfilling life possible, it’s important that we not get stuck in one or more chapters of complacency for years at a time, just going through the motions, surviving day to day, until we wake up and realize that we’ve been living out our own Groundhog Day – the same uneventful thing day after day with no change in sight.
If you have been feeling a little stagnant, and you’re ready to start a new chapter with a blank page, designed just the way want it, then you are in the right place! This audio training will give you the reboot you need to launch into the next phase of your life!
I’ve got a few exercises sure to help you burn off the old and step into the new, so let’s get started!
First let’s start by closing out your old, mental browser tabs.
Now what do I mean by that?
Well, have you ever noticed that when you close down a lot of the windows and browser tabs that are open on your computer, it runs a whole lot faster and smoother? Well, your mind works in much the same way. If you’re anything like the rest of us, you have a lot of little unfinished tasks around the edges of your awareness, pulling for your attention. Those unfinished tasks and quiet distractions make it harder for you to think clearly or move forward powerfully.
So your first task is to open your notebook and make a list of every project you currently have in progress.
Every communication that’s incomplete.
Every idea that’s hanging out in the ‘maybe pile.’
Every bill unpaid, message unsent, or email that’s currently in draft form.
Whatever is left half-finished or undone in your life, write it down now.
Take 1 minute to complete this task. You may not be able to write down everything now. You can come back and complete it later. But write down everything that you can.
Next, put little boxes next to each item, just big enough for checkmarks.
As I’m sure you can already see, some of these items can just be scratched off your list, as their time has passed. Go ahead and draw a line through those.
As you edit your list, you may already feel a little rush of energy. We call that “the power of the purge.”
Next, you’ll start to notice that some of these can be knocked out in five minutes, while others might take a couple of days. I want you to commit to checking off at least 3 of these items today. Pick two easy ones to build momentum, then one more difficult one to get a big boost of completion energy. This extra surge of power is essential fuel for your transition.
It’s like pruning. As you trim off the dead weight, you become lighter & springier, and soon new leaves & blossoms appear.
Take 30 seconds to mark the three tasks you will commit to complete.
Okay, now that we’ve freed up some operating space, I want you to put down your pen or pencil, sit back in your chair, close your eyes, take a deep breath, and shrug your shoulders up to your ears as you inhale.
Fill your lungs and your belly,
then let it all out.
Let’s do it one more time.
Inhale fully, filling your lungs and your belly, and exhale.
Keeping your eyes closed, shake out your hands for 5…4…3…2…and let your hands fall in your lap as you take another deep inhale into the bottom of your belly…
…and exhale slowly.
It’s time for newness.
With your eyes still closed, I want you to look through a big picture window, and see yourself in an alternate reality. This other version of you is just a few years older, and living your picture-perfect, deeply nourished, ideal life. Now, simply watch this “alternate you” as you move through your day.
Where do you like to eat? What do you do in the morning? What kinds of books do you read?
How do you spend your time? Are you with someone or alone? Who?
What adventures do you have in store? How do you contribute to the community around you? What do you do with your free time?
Now you’re doing something really exciting. Edgy. Exhilarating. What is it? Who are you doing it with?
What makes your heart happy?
Now take another deep breath, and gently open your eyes.
Turn the page in your notebook, and write down everything you just saw. From the banal and mundane to the drastic and bombastic, write down everything that you witnessed, especially the parts that were a bit outside of your comfort zone.
I’ll give you one minute.
As you wrap up your writing, what did you see your “other you” doing that you don’t do? Write it down.
Take 30 more seconds.
Okay, now look over this list of features and behaviors, and I want you to simply pick ONE item that REALLY stands out to you, and circle it. I invite you to try it this week, purely for the sake of broadening your perspective.
Take a few seconds to do this now.
Now before we go any further I want to offer you a gentle reminder: trying something new doesn’t mean that this has to be “your new thing.” Trying new things is merely about shaking yourself out of your old patterns and inviting in the winds of change. And if this scares you, that’s great. Being scared just means that you’re about to do something really brave…and reboots almost always require a bit of bravery.
Once you’re done with that experience, journal a bit about what it was like to step into something new. What feelings came up for you? What did you learn from it? And when you’re done with that…pick another.
Okay, let’s take another deep breath, fill your lungs and belly, and exhale.
We’re nearing the end of our time together today, and we’ve done a lot today! We’ve gotten clear on the importance of new beginnings, and addressed any potential “stuckness.” Plus, you made a list of your unfinished projects, purged the unnecessary items from that list, prioritized what’s most important to you, committed to checking off some of those boxes, gotten in touch with your “ideal self,” and committed to trying something new & exciting this week. You’re reboot is well under way! Now, there is just one more point I want us to cover.
As you grow into new expressions of yourself, you’ll want to rally your allies. Call your friends, talk to your therapist, or reach out to your coach. Line up your support team who can cheer when you are successful, encourage when you fail, and brainstorm new strategies when you encounter obstacles.
New beginnings are exciting and fun because they require you to become more than you were before. As you do that, your personal network can help you reach the finish line. New beginnings can feel scary – it’s nice to have someone who can share the experience with you.
Here’s to your new beginning!