November 23, 2016
“The Shift is REAL” Preparing for the New Year (yes, already!)
Well, the holiday season is upon us, and for most of us, it will be filled with an array of emotions. For some of us, it will simply be a joyous occasion filled with love, laughter family, and friends. For others, it will be a season of sadness, heartache and pain. For many, it will be a combination of both as we make our way through the end of the year. We look forward to the New Year when we can “begin again” by setting new goals, new visions, and new dreams. This sounds great, right?
In reality, you won’t be able to deal with the New Year until you “shift” some of the “stuff” from the old year. We spend too much time focusing on the future, and we haven’t figured out our present yet. How can we move forward if we are unsure of the place we are right now?
How can expect to complete a vision board of our future when we are still playing games with our current reality?
You absolutely cannot put Band-Aids on gunshot wounds and expect them to heal. They will only fester and become infected. They will become like a virus running through your bloodstream and affecting everything you do and every new relationship that you create. So you have to go in and do the surgery in your life before you can move forward.
There are about six weeks left in this year, and it’s enough time for you to get it together. Figure out what’s not working in your life and discover why it’s not working. If you don’t know the “why” behind the “what” then you are more likely to repeat the behavior the next year.
Begin to understand what you actually need in your life. I’m not just talking about material prosperity; I’m talking about emotionally, spiritually and psychologically. What is it that you need to make you feel equipped and empowered? Inspired and motivated? Purposefully passionate? Where do you stand in your relationship with your God? How strong is your connection with others? Is it necessary? Is it right? Very often our stagnation is rooted in the relationships that we have with others, so I want to share with you the concept of “shifting” the position of people in your life to help you move toward positive change.
Sometimes we have to ask ourselves why people are in our lives and if we don’t know why then perhaps we need to reevaluate their presence in our lives. I say that if there is someone in your life who doesn’t serve a positive purpose, you will need to “cut and paste” them. It’s not a “delete” action, but instead, it a necessary and required repositioning for you to free yourself from any shackles that prohibit your emancipation of unneeded burdens. When you think of people in your life, you should think they bring you more happiness and joy than pain, frustration, and sorrow. If they don’t, begin to “shift their positions” in your life.
Over the past couple of years, I had to “shift” the position of several close family members because I found myself constantly feeling bullied, hurt and betrayed by them. Instead of feeling uplifted and supported, I discovered that I felt more used and taken for granted. My kindness was often taken for weakness, and emotional blackmail was used for me to give them what they wanted as they wanted it. It wasn’t a good feeling, so I knew that it was my responsibility to make the change. You see, I don’t even think they had a clue about the impact their behavior had on me and that they actually loved me the best way they knew how. They gave me what they thought was the best of them. But you know what? I decided it wasn’t good enough and since I own the power of change I had to shift their positions in my life.
What does this mean? Well, it means that although I still love them, I am no longer angry at them. I no longer hurt because of them, and I no longer allow themselves into the core of my heart. I keep them at a distance, and I do not permit their negativity to infiltrate my life daily. Simply put, “I don’t fool with them anymore.”
Shifting positions of people in my life allows me to see what my real support system is. Remember, just because someone is sitting in the front row doesn’t mean that they are always clapping for you. You have to scan the audience and sometimes look in the back row to see who your real supporters are. This is imperative in your preparation for the New Year.
Many of us plan for the New Year with dreams and goals, and we talk about what we will do differently to build a more positive and better life for ourselves, but then we forget to shift the position of people in our lives. This is vital if we want the support to help those dreams come true. I know for me, although difficult, it was one of the best things I have ever done, and I feel more free, more optimistic and definitely more determined since doing it. I decided that I didn’t need approval and acceptance from those family members anymore because I could find that strength within myself and my significant support system.
So, how can you make “The Shift?”
- Look around you and see who is in your “inner circle.” Make a list.
- Treat the list as a “Santa” list and mark off who has been “naughty and nice.” In other words, think about who has supported and been positive this year (if they were negative in the past but were great this year then focus on the current behavior).
- Determine why you feel you “need” them in your life. What is that need rooted in? Do you really know? This requires examining the core of the relationship.
- Imagine your life without them. Really imagine. Think about your daily activities and the dreams you want to achieve in the New Year. Will they be a part of the process? If not, do you really need them?
- Decide where you want to “shift” them. I have categories where I place all of my relationships. I know this sounds “mean.” But it’s the only way that I can organize my relationships. You need to have boundaries in your heart and brain so that everyone does not have equal access to your spirit and the soul of who you are. If you don’t, then everyone has an equal opportunity to hurt you, and you make yourself a target for emotional bullying (whether they mean it or not).
- Reorganize your social media accordingly. For example, when I shift folks around in my life, I also shift their presence on my social media feed. Since I am an avid Facebook user, I reevaluate their role on my feed. Remember, this is about taking control of their presence in my life and influence on me, so I get to choose my relationship with them. In most cases I do not “unfriend” the, I simply “unfollow” them, so I don’t have to see their posts daily and feel like they are an active part of my life. In most cases, they don’t even realize that I’ve done this and therefore their feelings are not hurt. I know some of you are saying “why not unfriend them altogether?” Well, remember, this is not totally deleting them from my life. I still love them, I still care about them, but I just need to shift their position in my life. Therefore, I am simply shifting their position in my social media life as well. For me, this is so important since I spend a lot of time on social media.
- I think that it depends on the relationship that you have with the person whether or not you explain what you are doing. For the family members that I have shifted, they are aware that I am different because I simply have not reached out to them as I have always done in the past. I haven’t said or done anything negative I just shifted my approach to them. If asked a question, I answer it. If sent a text, I reply very direct and simple. I haven’t expressed how I feel to them directly because honestly, it’s just not worth it anymore. Over the years I repeatedly shared what I felt. I’ve explained, I’ve argued, I’ve cried and sometimes I’ve begged for understanding. But you know what, I’m done with all of that. If they want to know about the “shift,” they simply need to ask me. Sometimes it takes too much emotion to make permanent changes in relationships with others, so we don’t do it. I simply make shifts in positions of relationships and gives me the strength that I need.
- Try your new shifts out for a bit. “They,” say it takes 21 days to break a habit so give yourself at least that amount of time to see if the new shifts work for you. If you can get through the first 21 days, you will be amazed how your “new normal” becomes your “everyday normal.” As you move along in the shifting process, you may discover that certain people serve absolutely no purpose in your life, so you sever ties with them permanently. Shifting their position in your life gives you the time you need to figure it out.
- Know that some relationships won’t fall into the shifting category. Some people need to be permanently removed from your life if the relationship is abusive. No one deserves to be abused and therefore if you are in emotional, physical or psychological danger I would suggest that you consider removing that person from your live permanently if you can do so safely.
- Just Do It. Stop thinking so hard about it. You know who hurts you and who doesn’t support you or are just unhealthy for you. Stop making excuses and make adjustments. Just make the shift. Just do it.
Change is hard for everyone, and many of us we don’t like to do it because we have a fear of the unknown and it is more comfortable living in our daily routines. But if we have goals and dreams for the New Year that is only six weeks away we have to begin “the shift”right now. We have to remove ourselves from the toxic things and toxic people who threaten the prosperity of our purpose and derail our dreams. This step ensures that our vision for victory becomes a reality in the New Year. I know for me, I’ve already begun the process. I’ve “unfollowed” quite a few folks over the past week or so and I have several more to go.
You see, I have dreams for the New Year. I have goals for the New Year, and I have a vision. Anything or anyone who has the potential of threatening my tenacity to achieve it will be shifted. I cannot afford to waste my time or give away my time to anyone or anything that will be the swarm of bees at my picnic…stinging the sensation out of my success. I need my dreams to be safe and supported so the shift is necessary for my life and I honestly believe that it may be necessary for you too….
Start now…You only have six weeks left in this year to make “The Shift.” Just Do It.