Even though we might feel the pressure to make a decision, and we really want to leave an unhappy situation, we might not be prepared to take definitive action, and, as a result, we are pulled in two. In order to reconcile indecision, we might bide our time by setting a deadline for definitive action (ex: leaving a job or relationship). If this is the case, we might choose a designated date that is based on a milestone, such as a graduation or a retirement date.
Although we may keep our decision to ourselves, there’s now a foreseeable end to our despair, and whether weeks, months, or years away, we feel an immediate sense of relief. Finally, with a light at the end of the tunnel, we’re able to tolerate our remaining time.
However, even though we’ve made the hard choice and committed to a specific deadline, we’ve also given ourselves permission to prolong action and delay change.
While some people use deadlines as springboards into a new life during this stage, others don’t, and as a result, this strategy frequently backfires. You see, as the designated date draws near, all sorts of fears and objections often surface, and although some are logical, many are not.
Once we begin to second guess our decision, the reasons to stay start overshadowing the reasons to go, and if our minds become clouded with doubt, the clarity we once had is virtually lost.
Sadly, we may discover that we are no more prepared now than the day we first made the choice to change, and since we’re back at square one, we may have no idea what to do next! Consequently, that wonderful feeling of initial relief is often replaced by an impending sense of doom.
Although most people never make the connection, internal doubt and uncertainty can manifest as unexpected events that interrupt our departure plans. In other words, when we’re afraid to do something, we might unknowingly manifest plenty of tangible reasons not to do it!
– A time-critical project has to be completed.
– The person we are leaving suddenly needs our help.
– A family crisis derails our plans.
– Some type of disability requires assistance.
– Financial issues immobilize our departure.
– An exit strategy falls apart (ex: we lose a new place to live or work).
Once we have a valid excuse to postpone our plans, we may feel a temporary sense of relief. However, if we use excuses to resist change, we naturally attract more excuses, and consequently, we set ourselves up for unnecessary challenges.
Nonetheless, the moment we pass our self-imposed deadline without taking action, we move on to the next stage – and this is when we reach the “tipping point.”
To make changes during Stage Three:
- If you make a deadline for definitive change, make sure that you’ll be ready and able to take action when the date approaches.
- Prepare well in advance; mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually, logistically, etc….
- Don’t wait to the last minute to communicate with those involved.
Stage 4 – The “Tipping Point” Stage
“In order to align us with our highest path, the Universe may orchestrate a “tipping point” that propels us toward change.”
During this stage, current circumstances inevitably deteriorate beyond acceptable limits until we eventually reach a “tipping point,” and this could manifest as a reduction in pay, demotion in status or title, intensifying relationship issues, or virtually anything that might push us over the edge.
Regardless of details, when tolerable circumstances exceed a personal “breaking point” and become intolerable, the excuses to resist change become meaningless!
Moreover, when emotional pain and suffering escalates beyond a certain threshold, an internal switch is triggered and we are catapulted into action. Although we might have been on the fence for years (trapped in indecision), suddenly, there’s no longer a choice, and, when this occurs, change can be virtually instant!
Oftentimes, this is when “something snaps” inside, and after months or years of painful complacency, we suddenly pack our bags and leave.
However, if our pain threshold is high or the fear of change is still greater than the pain, we could remain stuck where we are – resist change. So, even though we might be drowning in emotional quicksand, we are still willing to live in despair!
Unlike the “tipping point” stage where you still have a choice, the next stage marks the “point of no return.”
To make changes during Stage Four:
- Do your best to make peace with the facts.
- Don’t fight the tipping point.
- The quicker you surrender and the easier you let go, the better things will flow.