Confusion is a Moving Target – Now What?

"It is difficulties that show what men are." - Epictetus (55AD-135AD) Greek philosopher

Dramatic transitions that occur beyond our control can stir up emotions of fear, doubt, anxiety and uncertainty. Changes persuade us to move in new directions, yet there is hesitancy to risk moving forward into the unknown. The change may even be a welcomed change. But our comfort zones are strong allies in maintaining the status quo. The past, even though it is gone, is where most people live; using it to make assumptions about the future. The future is unpredictable. Now what?

All of a sudden the events we took for granted are no longer there to hang onto. The change agent keeps circling in our heads reminding us that what was no longer exists. It is time to change. But change to what? Change to where? Change with whom? There are so many unanswered questions and uncertainties spinning around in our heads. One decision after another turns into fickle commitments because who's to say that the change will be better than what was? We question every option using the past as a reference to make a decision. The past is running the future.

Emotional fears jump in to garnish any decision with doubt and uncertainty. The fear gremlin says things like: If you do this, something worse could happen. If you do that, you may lose everything. If you change careers, it may not work out. If you relocate, you may end up alone. What if you change your mind and want to come back, and there is nothing to come back to?

If, if, if!! From the fear gremlin the negative ifs are the gremlin's tools to keep you paralyzed from making a decision. Confusion becomes a moving target because the bull's eye, the goal, keeps fluctuating.

"We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." - Albert Einstein (regarded as the Father of Modern Physics - March 14, 1879 - April 18, 1955)

What's one to do to at least slow down the moving target? Here are some tips:

  • Within each new stage of life there are things to grieve and things to celebrate. Whether it is job loss, divorce, life threatening illness, moving, etc., it is likely you will experience the seven grieving stages:
  1. Shock and Denial
  2. Pain and Guilt
  3. Anger and Bargaining
  4. Depression, Reflection, Loneliness
  5. The Upward Turn
  6. Reconstruction and Working Through
  7. Acceptance and Hope
Take care to be patient with yourself during these stages and trust. Make a daily list of 3 things/people/events you appreciate and are grateful to have in your life.

  • Don't try to force a decision on what to do next. Forcing an outcome usually results in getting nowhere. It is counterproductive. Pushing attracts more confusion.
  • Change requires new thinking. New thinking requires retraining your mind to develop higher standards emerging from your values. Retraining your mind requires willingness to grow in self-awareness to follow your inner path and actualize it externally. Meditate, or whatever you need to do, in order to stop your busy monkey mind so you can get in touch with the peace within that is always available.
  • Welcome change. Nothing stays the same. We aren't even paying attention to the wonders of change. For example every cell in our bodies is replaced and renewed within seven years. What are you planning to replace and renew within the next seven years? Like the cells within our bodies always at work (the inner parts are needed to have the outer parts work) work at building your core self to actualize what you are called to do next.
  • Enjoy the mystery of the unknown by investigating options. You may think you have no options, but that is limited thinking keeping you in the same circle repeating those actions and thoughts from the past. You are always at choice. That may be a hard concept to accept, but the truth is you are always at choice. What are you choosing to do to move through the process of change?
  • Make a list of the pros and cons of each option and notice your feelings as you write. The practice of writing down pros and cons and noticing your feelings as you write starts to slow down the moving target to a manageable segment.
  • The built in mechanism of "fight or flight" when it comes to survival is a natural human instinct when being threatened. The threat comes in many forms. Losing a job, divorce, life threatening disease, can't pay the mortgage are only a few "fight or flight" experiences. Regardless of the circumstance, you are going to choose to either commit to taking a stand to do whatever it takes to move forward or complain about the injustice or "it isn't fair" scenario only to get further depressed and anxious with no hope for resolution. You have the power to "fight or take a hike." Choose! Your life depends on it!
  • Take control of your life and do not allow circumstances to run you. Look through new eyes and get whatever resources available to get clarity on creating a target that is stationary to get you on your Right Track. Remember - Anything is Possible when you listen to your heart and go with what feels like your truth!

"When a defining moment comes along, you define the moment, or the moment defines you." - Kevin Costner (American actor - from the movie "Tin Cup")


Theresa-Maria (“TM”) Napa – of Right Track Coaching - is dedicated to helping professionals and executives increase their winning percentage while taking fewer steps and producing better results. Her career has included positions as executive assistant, vice president of operations, director of marketing & administration, and business owner with substantial experience in leadership, marketing, client development, and execut...

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