Thursday, May 14, 2015

You've made THE decision... now what?

In the pit of your stomach there is a heavy feeling. Why? Because you’ve just made a major decision, and you are now second-guessing yourself as to whether it was the right one.
You know what? That’s to be expected, especially if it is something you’ve labored over in your head for a long time. That feeling of doubt however can quickly fade into more questions, like what next? How do I actually implement what I have decided to do?
Small steps. One foot in front of the other. Everyone has their own strategy for moving forward. Some take the end goal and work back. What do I mean? Say you want to revamp a publication you produce by September. Make a list of all the components that have to be done for you to accomplish this. Then look at what comes first, and start building a plan. Using your end date, set deadlines for each task so you stay on target and move your project along. 
You may also need to recruit people to work on this project, so consider the skill sets required and look within and outside your network for who may fit the bill. Do you have a budget? What can you afford? Ask yourself these tough questions, before you make any financial decisions that could end up costing you more money than you have.
Or perhaps you are changing direction in your business, with a new focus and new customer base or changing your career. While it may seem like starting over again, and in some ways it is, you have more experience under your belt and doing your homework will kick-start your venture. And with careers, so often our skills are transferrable, so in reality, you are not starting from scratch. 
As you can maybe tell, I am a list maker and I try to approach big projects – be it business or personal – by breaking down the tasks into manageable bite-size pieces.   I also happen to work well to deadlines, so I prefer to set myself a timeline around which I can assign different tasks.
The above are concrete steps to move your plan forward, but what isn’t part of this equation is how to deal with the self-doubt and negative thoughts that will creep in uninvited as you try to make changes. And for some, this is a tougher hurdle to overcome. After all, your inner critic has likely been living inside your head for years – and this gremlin can be hard to squash or quieten down.
This is where having a support team of friends and colleagues comes in. You need to surround yourself with people who believe in you, who are your cheerleaders no matter what, but who will also share the hard truth when necessary. By taking small steps you can have sweet wins along the way and make sure to celebrate these successes as you step out of your comfort zone and take this bold step into your future. I make this sound simple, and I know it’s not – but you don’t want to let your self doubt hold you back. You deserve better.
Sometimes once those big decisions are made, you feel lighter, freer and more confident. Go with that feeling.. Hold that dream. Hold it tight. Like the beautiful kite dancing in the wind, the universe is telling you that you are on your way, soaring way beyond what you ever thought was possible.

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