Welcome 2023 – Where to Start?
By Leann Benedetti
DVM, ACC, CCFP, BSc / The Veterinary Coach
Have you ever felt like you just don’t know where to start? Maybe you feel like there are no options, maybe you have a few and you are just not sure which way to go? At this stage in the ongoing recovery from COVID-19, a lot of people feel like it is time for a ‘reset’. They are just not sure what exactly that means. I was pondering the same thing earlier this year, which is why I wrote the following blog where I work through my own experience.
Welcome 2023 – Where to Start?
Start where you are, Use what you have, Do what you can – Arthur Ashe
The question for me this year, at this particular point in time, and in my career has been … Where to start? ‘Cause I’m just not sure…
This quote reminds us to “Start Where We Are” – and when I think about that, I am aware of a dissonance that is created in me. Logically, it makes sense!! But my immediate emotional reaction ?? Wait What? Start where I am ??? No, No, No I can’t do that …
Does the past not matter? How can I start if I can’t see the future?
Oh I see … so this is about time?
The mere fact that the past and the future comes up quickly reminds me of something I am familiar with, and have learned to remember to embrace often. The concept of our time here on this earth being a journey. A journey that I think of as a spiral, a spiral of learning, a spiral of healing. A spiral that can be applied in a lot of different ways, to a lot of different things.
Moving Upward on the Spiral …
The ultimate goal is to continue on an upward journey on this spiral of Life, which is not always easy. Sometimes we take a few steps backwards, and sometimes we get stuck … and sometimes we revisit the same situations over and over again, until we learn all we need to from multiple perspectives. Sometimes, different parts of us learn at different speeds, and learn different things.
Wisdom of Our Three Brains
In the coaching world we are aware of the fact that we actually have three ‘brains’. Three sources of information that we rely on to make sense of the world, and our place in it. What the culmination of my lived experience allows me to see in this moment, as I contemplate Where to Start – is that my Brain, Gut, and Heart are all involved in this internal conversation. AND my Brain, Gut and Heart all have different signals informing their opinion. AND if I try to listen to all of those messages at once, I quickly get confused and overwhelmed. What I can do is recognize all three brains have important messages for me, and if I want to be effective, dare I say ‘productive’ then all three brains need to be seen, heard, and understood.
When I am aware of this conversation, I realize something else – I have the choice to keep the banter going … or … I can choose to Stop and Listen.
Be Curious and Ask Each beautiful brain – Brain, Heart, AND Gut
What is important about the past and it maybe not mattering?
What is important about not knowing your exact next step?
When I stop, and I listen … very carefully
I learn how I can lower the dissonance, increase the alignment and what I need to do to take the next step. Once I know what is important, I have insight into what I have to offer:
- To my brain – I believe you, it makes 100% sense to start here AND there is a timeline … the past matters, and the future is unknown.
- To my Gut – the blood, sweat and tears you have put in matter, they have made a difference. I see you, I honour you and I offer you Gratitude, Forgiveness and Compassion
- To my Heart – I know not being sure what the future looks like is scary. I honour you and I offer you Courage to believe that you can Trust yourself, Trust your all of your strengths, lean into your curiosity, passion, openness, and hope for the future.