It’s finally scarf season, here are our favourites to throw on with any outfit
It’s finally scarf season, here are our favourites to throw on with any outfit

Shayna Sappington

The world according to children writing their Santa letters
The world according to children writing their Santa letters

Amanda Cassidy

How to win at Christmas gifting
How to win at Christmas gifting

IMAGE

Christmas cocktail recipes to get you in the festive spirit
Christmas cocktail recipes to get you in the festive spirit

Shayna Sappington

Tights! Candles! Action! It’s time to winter and unhook our metaphorical mind bras
Tights! Candles! Action! It’s time to winter and unhook our metaphorical mind bras

Esther O'Moore Donohoe

The truth about going from one child to two: ‘relentless, magical, repetitive, exhausting’
The truth about going from one child to two: ‘relentless, magical, repetitive, exhausting’

Dominique McMullan

‘Practically criminal’: Model Brooke Shields on how she was sexualised as a 15-year-old
‘Practically criminal’: Model Brooke Shields on how she was sexualised as a 15-year-old

Sarah Finnan

Shop Irish this Christmas: Meet Bronwyn Thomson from Sandymount’s favourite gift shop
Shop Irish this Christmas: Meet Bronwyn Thomson from Sandymount’s favourite gift shop

Lauren Heskin

A gynaecologist asked women to redesign his office and the responses are amazing
A gynaecologist asked women to redesign his office and the responses are amazing

Sarah Finnan

Your party season beauty kit, from red lipstick to shiny hair
Your party season beauty kit, from red lipstick to shiny hair

Holly O'Neill

Image / Self / Health & Wellness

Four simple steps to move forward and make the changes you want in life


By Niamh Ennis
03rd Jul 2021
Four simple steps to move forward and make the changes you want in life

What blocks you from making changes? What stops you from thinking the thought, loving the idea of change, but in the end, resisting doing anything different? The chances are that you are afraid and instead, listening to your fears, doubts, limiting beliefs and insecurities, all who have an uncanny way of making sure we pay attention to them.

There’s no point denying also that when your confidence is low it makes it so much more challenging to even contemplate doing anything differently. So what can you do that will inspire you and motivate you, to make the changes you so badly want?

You decide it’s time and give yourself permission.

You decide that you are ready to allow yourself change. You give yourself permission to change. If it sounds simple it’s because it is. Until you give yourself the permission to change, nothing ever changes. You can put all the structures and elements in place but if you won’t allow yourself to do it, what’s the point?

Permission is normally achieved when you seek and receive approval from another person. But when it comes to living out your own life, to making decisions about what you want to change, the only person that can give you the permission you need is yourself.

Think back to all of those occasions when you very carefully selected exactly who it was you were going to ask advice from; purely because you had a pretty good inkling as to which direction they might lean; and you know you would be increasing your chances of getting the answer you most wanted to hear? Then, think of the amount of times you asked yourself first. When you decided only to listen to yourself? Not so comparable, are they?

That’s the balance we want to shift here and tip in your favour. We want you to go inward, to give yourself permission first and then you can go about seeking any help or assistance you might need to implement it. Whether you think that asking yourself for permission is the same as listening to your intuition, the fact is this, you’re far more likely to wait for permission from others before you go inwards and see what feels right. And that can never be good.

PEOPLE OF INFLUENCE

Think of Miriam in your accounts department at work. Sitting away happily every day gossiping about everyone and everything. We all know a Miriam. We know that she does this, heavens, she’s done it often enough both with us and in front of us. We’re scared that one day it will be us she’s talking about and it will! But Miriam, and all the Miriam’s in the world, carry quite a lot of influence over what we do and how we behave, without us even being aware of it.

We silently hand our power into their hands. We think of them when we are about to make decisions, we wonder what they will say when word gets round that we are leaving our relationship, signing up for a health programme, launching a new business, producing pieces of art, letting our singing voices be heard in public for the first time or writing the book we always promised ourselves we would.

We remember Miriam and we stop. We shrink.

Can I invite you that the next time you do this to ask yourself these questions:
Do I even like Miriam?
Does her opinion really matter to me?
Would she ever be brave enough to do something like this?
Will I remember who that girl in accounts was in 10 years’ time?

Reclaim ownership over your own life, by taking back what, or who is controlling your decisions. When you let go of the need for approval from others you can properly begin to live your life’s purpose. When you give yourself permission to make those changes, change will start happening for you.

FOUR SIMPLE STEPS TO PREPARE TO GRANT YOURSELF PERMISSION TO MAKE CHANGES

Stop blaming everyone else.
Do you find yourself regularly thinking, or saying out loud, that where you are in your life, or what has happened to you, is because of something that someone else did? Do you find yourself constantly pointing the finger at someone else for how you feel? Well, then, it’s time to stop. Take responsibility for your own life, your own actions, and stop defaulting to blaming someone outside of yourself. You are not your past so please don’t let it define you. Don’t become what happened to you, become who you are because of it.

No more people-pleasing.
When we put the needs of others ahead of our own we are saying to the universe and to anyone looking on, that we don’t deserve to be first. If we can’t fully support ourselves how can we truly expect to be supported by others? If we can’t show ourselves love and respect, how can we feel disappointed when we don’t receive it from others? If I don’t see the beauty inside me and feel that beauty move within me, then nobody else will recognize it in me either. We teach others exactly how to treat us, by how we treat ourselves, so start protecting yourself, learn how to say no when you mean no. Show that you believe in yourself and watch as others start to notice and respond in the same way.

Let go of toxic people.
This might seem a little obvious but don’t underestimate how hard it is to let go of people who are intent on making you feel bad about yourself. They could be family members, close friends, or even colleagues but some people can only exist if they keep others down, so watch out for this. Extricate yourself from their company. Find the people who want only what’s best for you, who want to see you grow, and who will cheer you on from the sides and be there when you cross the line.

Be mindful, that in order for other people to respect you, you need to respect yourself, so start there. Ask “who in my life lifts me up, has my back, and celebrates when I sparkle?” These are your people. They give you permission to shine. Find them. Keep them.

Be unapologetic.
Not everyone will understand why your desires mean so much to you or why it is you want to make changes. Some will likely feel threatened by your desire to expand and grow. But that’s okay. Not everyone needs to understand it.

It’s up to you to connect with your ‘why’. Why you want this, why it matters so much to you, and how you want to feel when you have it. Don’t apologize to anyone for wanting to be more than you are right now. Offer an apology to yourself for having waited this long to do anything about it.

Your magic is you.

One thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your story, your soul, your mind, and your values. Why should you stay where you are because of how it might look, or what others might think, or how it might make someone else feel?

If you’re doing this for the right reason, if you are making changes entirely for yourself, then nobody needs an explanation.

The question should never be who is going to let me, but it is who is going to stop me.

Niamh Ennis is Ireland’s leading Transformation Coach and Founder of The RESET for Change 3 Month 1:1 Private Coaching Programme for women just like you. She is also the host of The TOUGH LOVE ENERGY™ Podcast and is well known for her practical solutions to life’s challenges and her ability to tell you not what you want to hear but always what you need. To discover more about Niamh visit niamhennis.com.