Lines in the Sand + How to Shift a Paradigm [+INTERVIEW]

I’m writing this morning from my bedroom (wink) here in Rhode Island. The sun defiantly bursts through a small break in the clouds on an overcast day, pouring in through the window.

I’m rockin’ to AC/DC blaring over my computer speakers, bobbing around with some sort of an Elvis style sway. Luckily no one is watching.

And to think, just a week ago, I was having a slight public panic attack about money and the business side of life.

However, the truth is not a whole lot has changed in the last week — outside of a handful of decisions made; a slew of great conversations with awesome friends both new and old; much therapeutic writing and a bunch of new guest posts, shoutouts + interviews sprouting up across the web.

Beyond all else, of course, what has changed is my mindset.

As I wrote last week, staring down the barrel of that $50,000 shotgun was less about complaining, whining or airing a very public panic to you about money woes than it was about road signs: signs that I kept seeing, over and over again, that were calling certain things to my attention — and with good reason.

My road signs have been telling me that the business side of my journey is here. I can respond to those signs or ignore them.

And, in as little as noticing the road signs that are popping up all around you — the things, perceptions, ideas or whispers that continually grab at your attention like a nuisance — you’re drawing a line in the sand.

Acknowledging your road signs is it’s own definitive decision. You’re recognizing the road you’re on and telling yourself that you will respond to the signs around you.

What comes next?

Shifting the paradigm: smartly creating constructive, positive change. And for that, I have brought in an expert on all things change related to help you stoke you respond to the road signs you’re seeing.

 

Let’s Shift a Paradigm

So, what road signs are calling you to attention today?

In the comments section of last week’s post, we had an incredible and revealing discussion together on what your road signs were telling you — I was completely humbled and energized to see such a great conversation unfold.

Naturally, after recognizing what our road signs seem to be telling us, the next question becomes: what do we do to respond to them?

Today, I’ve invited the blogosphere’s own Queen of positive change, healthy habits and prolific living, Farnoosh Brock, to discuss with us how we can create smart change in our lives.

And better yet, Farnoosh is actually about to launch a brand new course called the Smart Exit Blueprint, in which she shares how she smartly shifting a major paradigm in her life: planning her own intelligent exit from an unfulfilling job in corporate America.

(Of course, you know that I’m actually looking to re-emerge into a new working atmosphere, not quit a job. However, since quitting a job is something I’m very familiar with and it’s a topic that many readers ask me about, I thought that bringing in Farnoosh to discuss this topic would be an excellent offering to you all!)

 

Q+A: Creating Positive Change with Farnoosh Brock

Dave: “Lately on the blog, we have been discussing the idea of “road signs” and how the thoughts, problems or ideas that linger on our minds provide us with guidance about the path we need to follow. In your experience, Farnoosh — and even with your family’s experience of leaving Iran years ago — how do we know when it’s time to make a definitive life change? What signs or indicators should we look for? What questions do we ask ourselves?”

Farnoosh: “It comes down to this: What of your current comfort are you willing to give up, knowing the path ahead will be difficult and challenging and filled with uncertainty — but also knowing deep down that it is the only way to live the life of your dreams and to do what you can find meaningful and fulfilling?

For my parents in Iran, they had big road signs and little choice but to make a major shift in their lives. For the rest of us, our road signs are more subtle and are often easy to miss or simply ignore:

The inner voice nagging us to do something useful, something we can be proud of, to live a little and to leave something worthwhile behind, to help others and to impact someone’s life through our work.

Those whispers are your biggest signs.

Those cravings for something difficult yet delicious, for hard work that you are willing to do because the results make a difference. Those yearnings for inner peace from having done something you want to do. Those are some of the signs that should not go ignored.

I am not half as brave as my father or half as patient as my mother, and that’s partly one of the reasons I waited before pursuing my passions in life. I ignored the clear signs staring me in the face and I continued building a conventional career that on the surface seemed very successful but under the layers, it filled me with torture and emptiness daily.

So I started to ask myself:

  • What is the worst thing that can happen?
  • What is the best thing that can happen?

And the best thing always outweighed the worst thing, and the odds for the best thing depended only on me: On my attitude, my resilience and my intent to see it through. So I resigned from my job and decided to work for myself. And you know what? I have not regretted any ounce of my decision for a minute.

Ask yourself those same questions when you are at the crossroads, and listen to the inner strength. I am willing to bet you are stronger than you think.”

Dave: “We see the signs, we know now what we ought to do, but how do we begin to plan, anticipate and execute these changes in our lives? Do we just jump it? What is the smart way to go about it?”

Farnoosh: “Knowing what you want to do is the hardest part, I want to admit that first, but without preparation and smart planning, you would not set yourself up for success at all and that would be such a shame. Your dreams deserve the very best planning, attention and foresight that you can give them.

I did not leave my 12-year corporate career overnight and believe me, once I had decided on jumping ship, it was not easy to remain onboard a minute longer.

Building a smart exit strategy is one of the best decisions I made as part of my departure from corporate and I wanted to share the exit process. Because I know it’s very difficult when you are in that place of frustration, feeling trapped and not know how to navigate your way out. I was there too.”

Dave: “Why do you think some people seem to be able to make huge leaps and adapt to change so well, while many of us stay in the same place of resistance, despite our big desires to be on the other side?”

Farnoosh: “I believe we all have the same shots at life with subtle differences that make stars of a few of us and leave the rest of us on the wayside. I really believe those subtleties come down to your mindset and your beliefs.

If you believe with every part of your being that you are meant and fully deserving of living life on your own terms, you can make it happen. If you believe that you are here to serve humanity in a special way, you will find that way. If you believe that you can be happy and do work that you love every single day, you will make a reality out of all of that.

And if you doubt what you just read, you have the mindset that will block all your chances.

That place of resistance inside you cannot possibly stand up to the strength of your beliefs and the power of the right mindset, so give yourself a chance, and really remove self-doubts and banish self-sabotage, and create the exact life and live up to your potential.”

The Smart Exit Blueprint by Farnoosh Brock: What if you could take a class to learn the step-by-step planning and preparation it takes to exit your wrong job and land on your true path? What if you could walk out of that class with a smart exit blueprint designed specifically for you and ready for execution on your terms? What if you could really love your work? The class is called the Smart Exit Blueprint and it’s already been put to test in real life. Check it out!

 

So, what are your road signs telling you?

And, as Farnoosh so astutely reminds us, what physical and mental road blocks are keeping you from intelligently creating positive change in your life — change that allows you to be fulfilled and living in harmony with your core values and dreams?

I know you can do it. We all can do it. And you know what? Most of the time, all it takes is to start by taking one small step in a new direction before the path is revealed beneath your feet.

Go ahead. Draw your line in the sand.

And begin to make the vital paradigm shifts in your life by simply taking one step over it.

* Affiliate Disclosure: Yup, I’m an affiliate for Farnoosh’s great course. I trust her deeply and I wholly recommend her to help guide you through intelligently exiting an unfulfilling working environment!! 

Flickr photo credit: CasualCapture

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