I grew up in the United States in the 70’s – years of excess and bigness. Big cars, big food, big hair, big waste. You can only imagine my anxiety and distress in 2013 when my country of adoption, Switzerland, announced a tax on all garbage bags. Yes, a large 30 liter bag would now ring in at about $6, yikes! I totally panicked and lost sleep wondering how I would ever manage a large home and a family of 5 with a bag-a-day habit. Impossible! Well, impossible happened. Within a week, I organized recycling containers, discussed it with the family and began. Amazingly, our children embraced it immediately. Within a month, our 30-liter-per-day ($35/week ) habit changed to 3 liters-per-week! We all participated (and still do) and shared in recycling with a proud family obsession not to fill that pricey bag!
I do not generally drive faster than the speed limit, especially with severe Swiss fines. One day, it happened. I got caught rushing home through a small village and found myself fined with a 3-month driver’s license suspension. I have not been without a vehicle since the age of 16! I run a business, work all over the country, have two large households to manage and live in rural Switzerland. I lost sleep, cried and was terrified. Impossible! Well, impossible happened. I decided to quit the gym (I couldn’t get there!), walk more, bike more and embrace public (yikes!) transportation and asked for help. I discovered a new, unfamiliar world, my friends and family said I had never been so relaxed, new relationships developed, new exercise routines emerged, I lost weight and grew proud of my 3 month challenge. Today, both new friends and public transportation have become partners of choice, thanks to that fine.
Embracing change makes the impossible possible! Change helps us grow in ways we cannot possibly yet imagine! How exciting is that? We are creatures of habit and despite what we may believe, when nudged appropriately, we can always do it! Here’s how:
- Look for your nudges! What CHANGE is prodding you and where might CHANGE in life serve you right now?
- Trust yourself! You are capable of CHANGE and knowing this is your first step! Once you trust that you CAN find a solution, you WILL!
- Embrace CHANGE with AND, not BUT! When we take an attitude of “AND, how will I handle this?” instead of “BUT I cannot handle this!” it opens the door for creative solutions.
- Ask for Help! Opening up to those around you can both ease the CHANGE and inspire new dimensions to relationships and life.
This message is particularly pertinent as we approach year-end. Stress has a way of escalating as we wrestle with professional and personal obligations often leading to overwhelm and lack of self-care. Am I nudging you? Might it be time to pause and reflect about how your year-end and holiday habits might be refreshed, reinvented or just ditched? With support and a personalized CHANGE STRATEGY, you can better manage this demanding time while staying productive, committed and joyful throughout the season and into the New Year. Just imagine not needing to make “healthy” resolutions for 2018! Remember, if you want something to CHANGE, you need to CHANGE something!