Understanding Change: What goes down, will go up again!

“Toto, I’ve got a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.”  Dorothy

We are definitely not in Kansas!  We are across the ocean in a dry and dusty land that we asked not to move to.  After months of planning and more months of being apart we have had one month in the same place.  We are convinced that we are here for a reason and determined to turn that unwanted change into an adventure!  This is an update on our expat journey:

  • My hubby works long hours. I keep busy meeting people, and attending nearly every event I am offered.
  • The Internet is testing our patience.  It is not dependable and will flicker on and off for hours at a time.  
  • We are waiting for our things: Pictures, books, television, microwave, and the Harley! ~ We are so ready to nest!
  • I keep craving – Tostitos Tortilla Chips!

In the midst of the cravings and the waiting I am still so thankful:

  • We are together.
  • For new friends.
  • We are immersed in a cultural experience!
  • When the technology works we can have live conversatoins with people across the world!  

During this transition my mind frequently questions how and where I fit in this new world.

Last week I discovered a blog that I’d never been to before. It was SO good! In seconds I was hooked by the great name, the titles of the blog posts, the artwork, and the stories.

Within minutes there were little monsters on my shoulder whispering in my ear to compare all that I was reading to my own blog.

Then the monsters got a little louder reminding me of all that I am not.

I literally had to stop reading.

  • Then pray.
  • Then I went to iTunes, picked out some of my favorite music turned up the volume and let upbeat tunes and lyrics filled with truth fill the house while I did other things.

Before long I was reminded of the things I tell others, as I encourage them to “Throw Themselves…

  • We are all here for a reason.
  • We are each called to be the best we can be.
  • It is my privilege to listen to the stories of the people I meet so I can better understand them.
  • And my job to share my stories with my voice.

As the monsters began to diminish in size, I remembered that so much of what I am tempted to feel right now is normal when someone is in the midst of change.

  • Fear and doubt – yes that’s normal!
  • Emotional roller coaster – yes that’s normal too!
  • Having fun one day and questioning where you fit the next – still normal! 
  • I am in a new place, filled with wonderful people and lots of new opportunities.
  • I know from past experience that it is wise to meet many people and have lots of experiences as quickly as possible.
  • I know that even though I’m busy I have not found my “groove” yet.
  • I know that the human in me wants to grab the reigns and be a part of something as quickly as possible.
  • I know that I need to stay in explorer mode for a little longer.
  • I don’t know yet – what I will learn here. …But I choose to learn.
  • I don’t know yet how I will make a difference here. …Time will reveal where I should plug in, and I will make a difference!
  • I am here for a reason!
  • What goes down, will go up again!  

I write this today thinking students that are graduating and getting ready to go off to school, of parents that are getting ready to say goodbye to what they have known and beginning to navigate a new reality at home, to other graduates that have finished college and are now transitioning to the workplace. And of so many that are in the midst of other life changes…

It is normal to feel disorientated in the midst of change. It is normal to have monsters whispering doubts and fears into your ears. It is normal for your emotions to play tricks on you. Part of turning this change into an adventure is to view the confusion and the lows as a roller-coaster ride…

What goes down, will go up again! Don’t hold too tightly to the rails! Lift your arms. Close your eyes. Feel the wind on your face. Breath deeply. Embrace the adventure!

Please share:  What helps you navigate change?

~~~

  • If you or a loved one are in the midst of change –  THIS TOOL is a powerful visual of normal emotional response to change.
  • If music speaks to you, THIS SONG is one that reminds me of who I am, why I am here, and pours courage into my heart!

Photo credits: Microsoft

President, Giana Consulting

Chery believes that:
• Anyone can be a leader.
• Everyone knows something that the rest of us don’t.
• We all need to leave our workplaces, communities, nation and world – better than we found them.

Those beliefs caused her to instigate change from every position she ever had and continually provided opportunities to lead system-wide change from the middle and the edge of organizations.

Her faith and my firm belief that leaders need to walk their talk were the reasons she agreed to move to a part of the world that she once feared. As an expat she embraced daily opportunities to meet and learn from people that represent the nations in our world.

Today Chery is The Founder of Giana Consulting, listed as a Great Leadership Speaker by Inc., writes a recognized leadership blog and has co-authored two leadership books.

She leverages true leadership stories and expat experiences to inform, inspire and emphasize life skills that cause her clients to be more energized and productive.

THANK YOU for commenting and sharing!

YOU ARE INVITED: To add your comments and to share your professional, personal and faith-based stories. Diverse opinions, compassion, and inspiration are welcome! (I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.)

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6 thoughts on “Understanding Change: What goes down, will go up again!

  1. Chery, I’m so proud of you and how you’re processing this event. It’s great to see how you’re using your experiences to help both others and yourself. You are making a difference. Thanks for sharing. Mike…

    • Thank you Mike! It’s been a struggle to be so vulnerable! …And then so rewarding when I receive feedback that someone else needed to know they are not alone! …And such a blessing for me to realize how many people want to encourage me in my own change process! Thank you for being one of them!

  2. Chery, You are separated by miles, environment, and culture, but you are not alone. Although I only know you from our online engagement, I offer my friendship, prayers, encouragement, and whatever else I can. I am with you in spirit!

    • Thank you so much Dan! It is really amazing to have prayers and encouragement from people across the world! And so cool that some of them are still virtual friends! Thank you for being one of them!

  3. Jeffrey is now in AIT in San Antonio, TX. he has lots of new things to learn and I am as his parent (grandparent) worried about him how well he will do. He sounds up-beat, so I think he is doing well. Being in the Army changed his life, he moved away from friends that tried to keep him down. When we saw him at graduation he walked with more confidence. So changing his life to another situation has been good for him.

    • Eva – I am so glad that Jeffrey has found something that fits! We are so blessed to have him serving our country! Our prayers are with him and with you!