I’m sitting here lost. I can’t make a decision. Every option doesn’t feel right. It may have felt right when I made my original choice but now I’m not so sure. I continuously question myself and my actions over and over again like someone that has been diagnosed with an obsessive compulsive disorder trying to figure out if my actions will in fact have the intended outcome I want… and even if they have in the short past, I’m suddenly unsure that they will in the future. The commitments I’ve made with respect to each decision now seem too much work to follow through on, too hard to handle by myself, too monumental, too much work to deal with for one person. And then there’s the paralyzing feeling where I can’t move forward or backwards that I’m stuck some where in the middle. I know in my heart of hearts I chose all of this, completely consciously went and moved knowing what I was getting myself into. I am 40 now. And, this is what it is like to be smack dab in the middle of a developmental window.
When I was just 38, Carl Buchheit (my friend and mentor) told me I was a bit early. I didn’t know what he was talking about. Back then it was still a theory I could relate to and identify with knowing what he was talking about, remembering what it was like to be in a developmental window before.
This time, I’m going through it and I’m prepared. I wasn’t when I was turning 30. I knew it was coming this time. I updated my system, my identity, my beliefs and knew what other changes needed to be made, I just didn’t know how they would occur. I knew the turmoil was coming… before it hit.
But now it’s full on and although I can see where I’m going, the path is still confusing. I know my career change as I’ve been working on it for some time. I know it is the right thing for me, and expression of who I am… I just never intended that my last accounting gig would stiff me for over $6000.00 in the process and the fact I would be taking a husband/partner into this as other things in my life were going and are currently flying in my face.
I knew and I know in my bones, I want to do this NLP stuff for the rest of my life. I know it is an expression of me… especially the form and function. The work I’ve done and the results I’ve personally experienced are nothing short of miraculous. But, still in my mind I can’t make a decision worth my life. 90% of all the people I work with come to see me as a NLP practitioner to help update their foundational internal conversations so I can help them move through this time (their developmental window) that they are experiencing in their lives to get to where they want to get to.
I remember this feeling before very clearly. It happened right before I turned 30. I moved back to Winnipeg (the place I loathe and fought to leave) trying to be in a relationship with a man who was trying to be in a relationship with someone else. I remember being alone in hotel in MooseJaw Saskatuwan, one day’s drive out from Winnipeg in the middle of winter, while he told me over the phone that I was not going to be able to live with him. Only a week before I had sold all my furniture, gave up my Vancouver apartmernt, and my great new job. And, the only thing I knew was I expected at work on Monday morning in Winnipeg. I had no place to live, nothing, not even a bed and I was in a city I didn’t want to live in since I realized I could move -which was about the age of 10, and I wasn’t on speaking terms with my family.
In hindsight, I should have turned back, turned the car around and gone back to Vancouver, stayed with friends and begged for my job back. Hindsight is 20-20… but at the time, I couldn’t make a decision worth my life. I couldn’t even decide what cookie to buy in cookie isle. I was in a developmental window. This is what it is like to be inside of the storm. The only thing that helped me in that year and half of uncertainty was making a decision, choosing a path and then sticking to it.
My developmental windows seem to have things drastically blowing up around me including jobs and relationships and things that you would expect to be solid are all the sudden not like friends suddenly dying in their sleep. But the things that emerge, some of those things are so incredibly surprising, things you never thought possible start to experience.
Despite not being able to make a choice – make one anyway… Soon enough you will know if that choice will work for you. And, if you need to choose again, because it wasn’t right, you can. The act of making a choice, helps you move forward, it will keep you moving, so you don’t feel stagnant, and it will help you feel in control.
The choosing I’m talking about is it is like being in a relationship – everyday you re-choose that person. Like everyday you choose to brush your teeth. Keep choosing and it will help you move forward no matter how hard it is.
A bit on developmental windows: They occur every 10 years (ages, 20, 30, 40, 50,60,70,80, etc.). They start about 2 years before the decade mark and may complete 2 years after the decade mark. They may last longer for the 30 year mark and the 60 year mark or early for the 40 year mark due to something called “Saturn Returns” which occurs at the 35 and 62 year mark.
The question a person is mostly dealing with during these time periods is “who am I for the world?” and anything the individual chooses at the beginningof the decade will influence what is created during that decade.
Developmental windows should not be confused with the modes of internal orientation of time, perception of time or change cycle. These all influence our ability to deal with time. Developmental windows are specifically oriented with foundational work & up grading of one’s memories and information to adjust to the person’s changing needs. This is where NLP can be really helpful as it helps people update past habits to work with the person’s current reality and future desires and gives them a sense of release.
90% of all people I see in my office are going throug this change and wondering what they are going to be for the world or how they are going to continue to exist and get what they want. They are usually are experiencing a very big change/transformation in their life and they can feel life not making sense and know they want something different but usually have trouble expressing it.
If you feel you are in this place make an appointment with me and we’ll see if I can create some
Tracy Joy, is the Founder of NLP Vancouver and holds a private NLP practices in Vancouver and San Francisco. She can be reached by emailing her at firstname.lastname@example.org or can be called 778-788-6657 (Vancouver) 415-404-6636 (San Francisco)