Every individual has felt trapped by a situation at some time during their lives. We are all guilty of staying in there and grumbling about why something doesn’t work, why we can’t get something done, and why it does not satisfy us.
However, being a part of a situation, a relationship, part of a team, a society, a community, a workplace or personal culture contributes to our sense of identity. It becomes part of our comfort zone, our Gestalt or sense of balance in our lives. As you have learned on your Advance courses, Gestalt is essential to anchor us psychologically so we can deal with daily or bigger challenges thrown at us. If we feel anchored and balanced by our identity in our personal lives, and within a community, we can face those uncertainties.
So what happens if that anchor – that relationship, that workplace, that community – changes? What happens if a different leader changes how the core purpose is achieved? What happens if we don’t fully believe in the purpose anymore or feel your identity is wavering?
We have three choices – accept it, change it, or remove ourselves from the situation.
We digest information and other people’s behaviour to fit what we have conditioned ourselves to believe, and our repeated thoughts strengthen our dendrites. So, when something changes at its basic level, it can make it very difficult for us to change. Our subconscious “Taxi Driver” leads us to distorting our perception of a situation to keep our Gestalt in balance.
Taking control of the bigger situation means taking responsibility for our own beliefs, conditioning thoughts and behaviour. It means we have the power to change our Gestalt.
Consider a particular situation which annoys you, and you find fault in or don’t feel fully invested in anymore.
If your situation, the other person in a relationship, your preferred team, your job consistently fails to meet your expectations, this is the time for you to change the situation or remove yourself from it. You are the person in charge of it. You have control of your perception, and therefore, how you perceive it.
Tips to let go of a situation which does not meet your expectations:
Identify what the situation has taught you. Note down the strengths, skills and insight you have gained from it.
Transform Your Narrative to emphasise the Positive. You are the hero or heroine of your own story. You are the person responsible for the experience you take away from a situation. Consider an experience which may appear negative, but note down the positive behaviour you showed and how you benefited.
Control the controllables. Take control of issues which you can change. Create that SMART goal to achieve it. Focus your energy on something new that you believe in and can control.
Metaphorically discard negative feelings and issues you want to remove yourself from. Write down the feelings or issues on Post Its and either screw them up and recycle or lock them in a box.
Visualise your future if you accept the current issue, if you empower change, and if you physically remove yourself from the situation. This is a very good exercise based on our affirmations exercises on our Advance courses. Visualise yourself in those three versions of your future, and write down those images as positive affirmations. Which future do you see yourself in? Which future do you prefer?
List the positives and negatives of each possible future to enable you to make a comprehensive decision and take control.
It is up to you to ensure you live the future you prefer from the visualising exercise. Deciding whether to accept, change or completely let go is your responsibility. You can empower yourself to change your situation and re-establish your Gestalt so that it meets the expectations you set yourself. You are in control of your perception of your future by creating it through your thoughts and behaviour.