The first step to lasting change - knowing where you are now

The BECOMING Method series week one - Baseline

Over the next 8 weeks, I’m going to walk you through my BECOMING Method™ 
  • a systematic approach based on the nursing process (assess, diagnose, plan, implement, evaluate), my coaching education, my personal journey, and my work with clients
  • designed to deliver the transformation you desire, as quickly and simply as possible
  • we work together to determine:
    • where you are
    • where you want to go
    • how you're going to get there 

For this first week, we're going to start off with Baseline. 

Where are you now? And what's most important to you?

We can't change what we don't acknowledge.

So let's take a look at how things are now: the good, the bad, and the ugly. No guilt or shame. Just an honest assessment.

It's easy to want to jump in and start thinking about all of the things that we want to be different, but lasting change and true transformation take some intentionality.

One of my mentors refers to “slowing down to go fast”, and that's a concept that I have struggled with myself from time to time because I have had a tendency to be rather impulsive.

But I found that when I take the time to plan and put in the effort to start at the beginning and see where I'm really coming from, the rest goes much more smoothly. 

Think of it like using a GPS: in order to arrive at your destination, you need to know where you're coming from. Even if you only have a vague idea of where you're going it's imperative to know exactly where you're starting. 

Let's say I want to go to Florida. Even my beginning steps are going to be different depending on whether I'm starting from Indiana or from California. Both of those places are pretty far away, so even if I just enter Florida into the GPS, I'm going to start making steady progress toward my destination. But if I don't know where I'm starting from I could end up wasting a lot of time - and that's what I don't want for you.

I know for me personally (and a lot of the people that I've worked with), one of the biggest barriers to lasting change is the fact that it feels so far away.  We want results and when we don't get them it can be discouraging. 

That’s why I worked to develop this framework that can be applied to any transformation big or small. One of the most impactful ways to apply the method is to use it to design a self-care program that 

  1. is going to actually matter to you and 
  2. that will fit in your life 

Although self-care is a great place to start, the BECOMING method will work for any transformation you want in your life, including planning out what you would like the rest of your life to look like, but more on that later. 

Right now, if you're ready to get started, think about something that you would like to change or incorporate into your life. Maybe it's finding time to take care of yourself or figuring out how to get out of a rut.

If you're not completely sure but you just feel that there is probably some area of your life that could be better, let's start by looking at the most important areas of your life. 

If you’d like a visual aid, you can download a copy of the Life Balance Tool by going to www.jennylytle.com/balance

Taking a look at the individual areas of your life can help you to determine how you can get the most impact. You can use common categories like:

  • career 
  • finances
  • health
  • friends & family 
  • significant other 
  • home environment
  • fun & relaxation 
  • personal & spiritual growth

…or you can feel free to customize and add and change those in a way that fits your life best.

One of the things that I caution you about as you do this is to not get focused on what you feel like a number should be. Your level of satisfaction does not equal your level of gratitude.

For example, you can be very grateful for your family or for your career, but feel that there is a lot of room for improvement or that there is a lot of tension in one or both of those categories.

And there doesn't have to be a specific concrete reason for your number either. You are going with your gut.

The important part is to rate each of those things see where you are now. See where there is the most room for improvement. 

Once you decide on an area of improvement, spend a bit of time thinking or ideally journaling about a good first step to take toward improving your satisfaction in that area. This can work whether you have a clear idea of what needs to be different and how to go about it, or if you're not really sure. 

You might try starting with, “I want to make sustainable improvements in ____________________ (this area of my life), and a great first step to take is to ____________________. 

Here are a couple of examples if you’re feeling stuck or unsure.

Let’s say you have a particular relationship that could use some improvement and you feel that part of the cause is you haven't been spending enough time together. What is something you can do this week to increase your connection?

Or if you’re looking to improve your health, what is one small step you can take this week to start moving you in the right direction? 

Keep in mind it doesn't have to be something big. It's easy to discount small incremental steps as insignificant but doing those little things over a period of time can have a huge impact.

I also suggest doing a little journaling around what comes up for you as you go through this entire exercise. You can start as simply as, “After using the Life Balance Tool, I feel…” and go from there. 

Even if you’re not much of a journaler, I encourage you to consider it, just as an experiment.  Writing can truly clarify thought, especially when done by hand. 

Life balance isn't about doing everything for an equal amount of time. It's about doing the right things at the right time. - Christy Wright

 

Next week, we are going to dive into the second step of the BECOMING Method™: Excitement - what lights you up.

For now, make sure to grab your download at www.jennylytle.com/balance. And until next time, take a deep breath or two and never stop becoming the best version of YOU. 

On the go? You can listen to the podcast version of this post here.

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