“Courage is a fear holding on a minute longer"  General George S. Patton

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  • Are you stuck in your current job and not finding a lot of meaning?
  • Just laid off and uncertain of what is next?
  • Struggling to understand what you want in life and the right next step?
  • Want to make a leap into something new but have some limiting beliefs?

When we are in a state of transition we tend to feel overwhelmed, fearful, and stuck. We lack the clarity we need to make thoughtful and informed decisions; decisions that truly connect with who we are and what's important to us.

Or, maybe you have come to a stage in your life and are wondering about or ready to take that next step but are too afraid.

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Fall is a time of transition and while some of us sit back and enjoy watching this natural change occur, some of us are sad to see the summer end and may even fear what lies ahead. For me, fall has always been my favourite time of year. I love the cool, crisp air, the colour of the leaves and the anticipation of what the "new year" will bring. So why is it that some people can look forward to change and all that it might bring and others fear it?

Why Do We Have Fear?

In my experience as a transition coach and a fear specialist, I have found some commonalities around fear.
1) While all our fears may be different, we all have fear.  All of us!
2) How we hold our fear determines if we take action, or not.
3) Underlying all our fears is the belief that we can't handle it! (it being the fear, i.e. failure).  In other words, we don't trust ourselves.

So how do we start trusting ourselves?  As with any change, it takes time. Even in nature, we don't transition from one season to the next overnight (most times). It usually takes at least 1-2 months. This time in comparison to human change is quite short however, if you pay attention, the process is the same. In nature the same things occur each time. With human change, we need to pay attention to what may be preventing us from embracing change.

4 Key Obstacles that keep us from Embracing Change:

As I sit and write this newsletter, I am in the space of reflection. It was exactly one year ago today that my mom passed away. As this has been an emotional weekend for me, I found myself reading my journal from last year, the week leading up to her death.

One of the things I was struggling with at the time was the notion of Doing vs. Being. This has always been a bit of a challenge for me but was especially true last year. Here are some excerpts I’d like to share from my journal.


August 22, 2012

Mom isn’t doing well at all. At this point I don’t believe there is anything that can be done and it’s just a matter of time.... I know that sometimes there isn’t anything to do. This concept, I am realizing more and more, is very difficult for me. It seems that regardless of the situation, if I don’t DO something, I feel guilty and believe that I have failed or that it’s not enough – that I am not enough. I’m slowly realizing this is not the case and sometimes there is simply nothing to do. Allowing myself to just be is good; in fact, there is great learning in just being. And, that IS enough!

September 9, 2012

These last few weeks have felt like years and at the same time, everything has happened so quickly. Mom died on September 1st at 6 am....While these last few weeks have been very difficult it has also taught me the value of relying on family and friends and not feeling like I need to do everything. Sometimes there is nothing to be done and there is great value in being present in the moment.

As a coach who works with clients to help them recognize and face their fears, there are circumstances in everyone’s life where those fears will come back. While I couldn’t have changed the situation that happened with my mom, it brought out my fears and insecurities of failure and not being good enough. Ultimately, not being good enough is what we all struggle with and we try to compensate for that by doing something. The act of doing is merely a distraction from what we are truly afraid of and provides us with the hope of making ourselves feel better for fear of being judged by others. Unfortunately, when we distract ourselves, we miss the opportunity to face our fears, learn how to manage them and most importantly, just be present.

So, what does it mean to just be?

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