Not many people are impulsive or leap without having the proper support in place. If, for example, you were planning on going sky diving, you would first take a lesson before jumping out of a plane. You would learn how to meticulously pack your parachute and understand the plan of where you will jump to land in a particular area for a myriad of reasons why.
The same thing is true when making life decisions. Whether it is deciding to adopt or have a child, changing careers, or retiring. There is often a long process of thinking about it, planning, reflecting upon the pros and cons that all happen in the background without many people knowing about it.
In my previous marriage, I was very unhappy. We had two small children and it became apparent that my dreams and ambitions would forever take a backseat to my then-husband’s goals. We weren’t on equal footing, to put it kindly. At the time we were living in Seattle, WA which was far from my family. I knew we were headed for divorce and there was no way I was going to get divorced and be stranded with him on the west coast without my family nearby. So I convinced him to move back to the east coast, and the relationship continued to deteriorate. I moved into a separate bedroom within the house we shared for a year because we couldn’t afford to live apart. We swapped kid duties and tried to figure out our finances. Then when I was able to, I moved out. In Maryland, you have to live apart for a year in separate residences before getting a divorce.
To an outsider looking in, it may seem as though I got divorced and quickly remarried. What you couldn’t see was the amount of time taken to evaluate the decision, and the hours of therapy and self-reflection that took place over the course of three years.
As I mentioned, people don’t often leap into a major change. There is so much that we can’t see under the surface that is taking place in the person’s head and heart. So the next time you catch yourself passing judgment on someone else because you think they are going too fast, take a moment to reflect on what you couldn’t see. Ask questions and be open to accepting that this person probably took a lot of time to think about their decision.
And the same thing is true for you. If you find yourself at a time in your life when you are weighing the pros and cons of a big decision, it’s important to take the time to reflect within yourself. Whether that is during meditation, coaching, or therapy. And then there needs to be a point at which you reach out and include the people you love in your ideas. Allow them the opportunity to see your dreams and goals for the future. The bonus is, that it might mean that you could avoid receiving messages saying you are impulsive or not thinking clearly when you include them in your process. You don’t have to go at it alone but at the same time, there needs to be a balance of self-reflection, professional coaching, and support from the people closest to you.
And when the time is right, when you have your resources in place, that is when you leap!