When it’s time to pivot
Transition. It’s kind of exciting. All the new things and creative inspiration and dreams of what may be possible. And let’s keep it real: it kind of sucks. Making tough decisions. Letting go of things that no longer serve. Facing fears of what could go wrong.
It’s both exhilarating and terrifying at the same time.
A period of transition can last a short time, or a long time. Before I left my corporate career, it was years before I was finally ready to step out. That journey went from just a vague feeling of restlessness that something needed to change, to a vision starting to form, all the way through to a well formed exit strategy and then the actual exit. About four years I would say from restless to done.
In my business and life at the moment, there are more changes afoot. My business is four years young and it’s going incredibly well. I have hit what feels like the comfortable part of the mastery curve for my content and the work I am currently doing and that has amazing benefits: the work becomes quite effortless, you know you are in your zone of genius, you feel the flow often, you work with authority and expertise, you have an abundant business that is a distant dream when you are starting out.
It’s a place that many people sit in and stay because, you know: comfortable. And comfort is hard to move away from.
But if we’ve met or if you’ve been following along here for a while, you will know that the comfort zone isn’t really my jam. I’m more interested in creativity, in shaking things up, in busting the blocks, challenging the stories, trying new things and getting comfortable in the discomfort of change. Mostly I just love to create, to follow through on my curious visions and to figure out what’s next. It’s why I used to thrive as a big business strategist, and why I now love doing strategy and coaching work with entrepreneurs and creatives. It’s a sweet spot for me.
For the past year I’ve been feeling like it’s coming to that time. You know it when you feel it and it’s defined by one major thing: that restlessness. It’s not boredom. It’s not apathy. I am still super passionate about all the work I am doing. But I’m also itching for a new creative project. And again, if you know me, you’ll know that one is never usually enough (it’s both my strength and my weakness).
So there’s some pivoting going on. A new book being written. A new women’s platform being built (actually, there are two). Another new business being started. And following a passion project just to see where it will lead. This time has all of the excitement and joy and creative freedom that comes with new projects and a clean runway. It’s my favourite place to be. Pure creation time.
But with all of that, comes the gap between the present, and what the future will look like when the work is done. And here in lies the transition period that bites.
I call it the pivot gap.
You see the vision. It’s crystal clear. There are no stains on the glass, all the murkiness has been wiped clean and it’s glimmering in the sunlight.
But then, there’s the work. Endless work. Months and months of work to be done whilst keeping on current course and speed, and it can seem like it’s so v e r y f a r a w a y until you will get to that beautiful place of done. And herein lies the rub. You just want to be there already. But there is going to take time.
If this is where you’re at, or think you might be one day – in the midst of a transition or a pivot in your career or business – have a play with this exercise:
Vision the future.
If you’re an entrepreneur or a business owner, write the new About page for your website. Write it like you are in the future. The work is completed. The business or creative venture is launched. You are a renewed brand and a huge success. Your dream has been realised. It’s DONE. Write that page in all it’s beautiful glory.
If you’re in a career, write your new LinkedIn profile. Vision where you want to be in your career. The role, the skills you will have acquired, the profile you will have, the work you will have done, the brand you will have built. Write your profile with all of this new experience and everything that goes along with that. Write it like you have arrived there.
When we get clear on the vision as if it has happened, we anchor down into that vision. The positive images that we are creating in our minds pull us forward to actually create that future. It’s not only law of attraction stuff (although there is some truth in that), it’s science. And it works.
At the very least, it gets you super clear on what it is that you want for yourself, and what it will look like when you have done the work to create that. And it helps to close that pivot gap.
I did the exercise just last week. And it helped to crystallise everything. I will continue to refine it. It will keep me on track, motivated and inspired to show up, keep working even when it gets hard (because the work will always get hard) and find the grace and ease in the middle of the mess that is transition and creation.
Have a go at this. Write it all out once, in total flow without editing yourself. Then go back and keep honing and revising and adding and editing until it feels like the you you are ready to step into. Then stay the course to create what you want most.
Exciting times. Full of possibility. The very best place to be.
Here’s to your transition and pivot. May you walk that path with grace, ease, courage and conviction. And may you find the creativity and the joy in the journey.
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Photo Credit : Jared Weiss