What does a caterpillar need to evolve? Does it make a list of 10 resolutions with a step-by-step process for becoming a butterfly? Take your mind back to this time last year. Do you still have a list of the resolutions you made? There's a euphoric boost of dopamine in making that list. It wakes you up in the morning, pushes you out of bed. You acted boldly and your life was changed. For about three days.
I have good news! What if I told you that only ONE thing is important? The caterpillar doesn't follow a ten point strategy. It's singularly focused on the transformation process. The reason that resolutions don't work is simple. I already know what I need to do. I don't need a list. I need a mindset.
Your guiding mindset helps you make choices according to your end goal, so that you don't need a list of rules to keep... you just need to be honest with yourself choice by choice. How well do you think you can trust your instincts to grow? That's the one thing you need to focus on.
There was a time in my single life when I was trying to patch some cracks in the shower tile and didn’t know about grout, so I thought I could at least make it look better by using my white toothpaste. That did NOT accomplish what tile grout was supposed to accomplish. In the same way, working on changing our behavior will change the way we appear on the outside, but will not accomplish the transformation necessary to really thrive.
I have three suggestions to help you replace the cracks in your thinking:
- Rewire. You need to create space for growth, find a nice solid branch to hang on. Give yourself time to attend a workshop or retreat to slow down, shift gears and marinate in repose to reset your thinking. Your life is a work of art. It's not finished yet. Find a workshop or retreat, or rewire your creative operating system with this workshop: Your Life, God's Masterpiece.
- Restore. The greatest masterpieces need occasional restoration. You've emptied the cup, now fill it. Be careful what you choose to fill it with. If you restore the grout in your shower with toothpaste, your return on that investment will be commensurate with your effort. Maybe you need to understand how you're made so your cocoon is not knocked down by the wind, so you are equipped to not only survive but thrive. Maybe you need to understand your life 360º.
- Reinforce. Who's watching the cocoon? Do you have a tribe - people who test and challenge your thinking? Do you need to reinforce your support system? You might already have a network in place, but if you are looking for a place to plug into a support community, consider creating a book club with a group at work or join a 360º Book Club following The Artist's Way.
Consider the caterpillar. It doesn't have a ten point plan. It follows its natural instincts and moves through the process. It can't be rushed! There's no overnight transformation that's lasting or real. At the very least, I hope these three things inspire you to look for the opportunities around you to rewire, restore and reinforce your transformation so you can plot your 2018 course with energy and intention.