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April 12, 2014

Making Wiggle Room for Change. ~ Dr. Tonia Winchester

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I often think and write about making seemingly selfish choices—you know, those ‘all about me’ things.

I’m an advocate of leaving enough wiggle room so that we can be who or what we want to be, in the way that we want.

I notice that often people don’t seem to have the courage to step into themselves and their truth. It’s one thing to want, aspire or wish, but it’s a whole other thing to actually make those dreams a reality.

We have to assess the pros and cons of staying with the status quo, or making the changes. And commonly it’s not what we want the most in our heart of hearts that wins out.

Instead, it’s often the option that seems the most comfortable or the least painful or scary.

Creating wiggle room or space for change means something will have to go…and letting go of things can be terrifying.

I give this quote to my patients in a handout the first time we meet, “The fear of change has to be less than the fear of staying the same.”

Take for example, someone wanting to lose weight. She has to most likely change her food and eating habits, giving up her favorite “treats.” She most likely also has incorporate movement into her routine  and create time in her crazy busy, schedule to get her body moving.

Here’s the thing: focussing on food and movement can only take her so far. To achieve lasting changes she has to face the things that might have caused her to use food essentially as a drug and overeat. This is the most frightening part.

Or perhaps there is a woman at the top of the corporate ladder who wants to live by the sea and make art. She has to face the idea of a change in lifestyle, income and routine. Not only that but she is worried that those who love her will judge, ridicule and misunderstand her. That is some scary stuff.

Sometimes change is freaky! So We’ve gotta make room to feel the fear.

And as they say, “Do it anyways.”

Otherwise we can get lost in the hypothetical fear loop forever, which will drive us loopy with questions like:

What if I fail?

What if I succeed?

What will people think of me if I do? Will they still love me?

What if it’s a waste of time? Energy? Money?

A valuable exercise to try is to play in the mental fantasy of worst case scenarios. Think it through: How bad could it really be? Would we be any worse off than we are now?

You know what I find is better? Listening to my gut, feeling into your heart and making a body-centred choice.

I betcha the fear isn’t as bad as not living your dreams.

Would the change be of better service to you? Your family? The world? Generally the things that are aligned with your heart-soul purpose meet all of these criteria.

We must give ourselves the space to feel fear.

There are incredible messages in this space—let those messages be a driving force.

When you feel it, you often find it’s not as bad as you thought. Allow yourself the space to let that little voice inside you sing out loud and proud.

That’s a lot of giving space. I know, it’s extremely charitable.

In the comments below please share a time where you dove into fear, took a leap, or trusted your gut and perhaps went against the grain. What changes did you notice?

 

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Editor: Renée Picard

Photo: Pixoto

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Dr. Tonia Winchester