New Year: Emerge from Hiding

Depositphotos_43200805_s-2015What’s been keeping you hiding in your cave this past year? What have you been protecting yourself from? More importantly, how well is this type of hibernation serving you? Many of my coaching clients started out clinging to the safety of their caves and so did I. We also tend to find new caves to hide in as we continue on our respective journeys.

Whether you’re hiding from the hurtful issues in your current relationship, the risk of rejection in a new relationship, or any other fears of disappointment, failure, or shame in the various aspects of your life, there is definitely a way to venture out of your cave. You have choices and options. You have the power to venture into the light. Let’s create a step by step plan that feels doable and let’s implement it in 2018.

Nothing gets built without a dream and a vision. So let’s first ask ourselves what we ideally want that aspect of our lives to look like that we’ve previously been hiding from; whether it’s a current relationship, a future one, or any other area that we have been protecting ourselves from. Let’s give ourselves permission to fully envision that ideal.

Now, keeping that dream and vision in mind, let’s ask ourselves the following question. “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” Let your answer wash over you. Maybe the answer is, “I’d have that first difficult conversation to begin to shift my current relationship closer to my dream and vision.” Perhaps it’s, “I’d begin (or re-start) internet dating and put myself out there to find love.” The possibilities in each area are limitless.

Each answer to “what you would do if you were not afraid” can be broken down into tiny baby steps, with each small success leading to the next one, until you have faced your fear and have left your cave behind in favor of the warm sunshine. Reach out for whatever support you need to make it happen, just venture out of that cave for 2018; fear will only magnify in the darkness. Squint if you must and shield your eyes with your hands, but takes those steps out of your cave, put one foot in front of the other, and begin to create the life that you desire.

Change Your Lens to Change Your Life

Young businessman looking through magnifying glass isolated on white

The lens through which you see the world and through which you view your experiences is a crucial variable in what you achieve in your life. If you look at your surroundings through a blue lens, you will see absolutely everything as blue, but if you switch to a yellow lens, suddenly everything is yellow. What lens might you be viewing your world through? How is the lens that you are choosing coloring your life?

In what aspects of your life is your lens tinting your experience with a touch of victim mentality which may include hopelessness or guilt? Where in your life are the anger, conflict, and resentment lenses causing you to blame other people or situations for what blocks you from your goals?

The great news is that you can change your experience by consciously selecting a different lens. What type of lens would ignite positive change at work and at home? What would it be like to view the world through the lens of complete responsibility for your reactions without taking things personally? How might a lens in which you see collaborative opportunity in everything around you change your experiences?  What about a lens in which you see ways to give genuinely to others wherever you look or you view acceptance and nonjudgment everywhere? How about seeing the world through a lens of inner wisdom and intuition? Imagine switching back and forth between those lenses throughout the day to really experience being “in your natural flow” professionally and personally; when you’re just effortlessly connecting, creating, and expressing your talents and gifts.

Instead of your reactions overtaking you, what would it be like for you to shift your energy and consciously select the reaction that would suit each particular situation and relationship best? The powerful choice of lenses is yours.

The first step towards selecting the lens that will feel best for you is to become aware of the lens that you are currently utilizing in each situation. So, you will need to pause and observe yourself with honest self-reflection. One of the crucial keys to this process is learning how to take that powerful pause versus automatically reacting through your predominant lens. Some ways to create and utilize this pause are: Take a deep breath, commit to doing nothing at all for a moment, and ask yourself if your reaction is typical for you and what could be a different response. This process might require restricting the most reactive parts of you.

Now that you have enabled the possibility of choice, you will need to familiarize yourself with what it feels like to use various other lenses. Draw upon past experience, experimentation, and a vision of a more centered you for this process. As you experiment with each lens, evaluate the results in terms of your feelings, your stress level, your level of engagement, and the degree in which you accomplish your goal.

If you really want to ignite sustainable positive change in your life for this New Year, choose your glasses purposefully and keep them on consciously, even when the glare of another bright color threatens to overtake your field of vision. Toss your victim and anger glasses aside for now and pick up a new pair of lenses that support a more empowered and successful perspective. Then take meaningful steps to create the new year and the life that is truly what you desire.

*Concepts are based upon Bruce D. Schneider’s “Energy Leadership Index” from iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching)

*Interested in a more individualized opportunity to benefit from these transformative concepts in your personal or professional life? Contact Heidi Krantz at to schedule a unique Energy Leadership Index Assessment and Debrief designed for you, your organization, or your team, and experience the powerful results of changing your lens.