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As someone who works in a lot of strategic planning venues … with both groups and individuals, I know a thing or two about drawing out desired destinations and creating plans to get there. And about the common bumps one can encounter along the way.

Procrastination and Other Resistance:
One can draw out an excellent Desired Vision and logical Action Plan … but if action isn’t taken the whole exercise can seem to be null and void. And in some cases it is. Why action hasn’t been taken is the fascinating part. In most cases action hasn’t happened because the person or system has allowed some sort of resistance to block change.

Resistance can be related to many things. Often its roots lie deep in a person’s (or system’s) beliefs about themselves and what they say they want. The beliefs create a funky energy of doubt, fear, lethargy and unpleasantness and unless they are brought into the light of day and SHIFTed then procrastination and other sabotage results. The status quo (even if it’s detrimental or sadly out of date) seems better than doing the mature work to identify and express negativity in order to properly process it. So people and systems opt to tread water and stay in the same place rather than take on the growth challenge.

Another Option:
In other cases (and even sometimes in the cases above) something else can be happening at the subtle levels. Their change process is still happening, but its hibernating in a cocoon stage … waiting for other conditions or circumstances to line up so faster momentum can eventually kick in. This process is called “Right Timing” or “The Law of Not Skipping Steps”. Everything has an inherent order to it and needed steps and maturation can’t be skipped.

Examples of Right Timing:
Many of you are familiar with the Law of Attraction work of Esther Hicks and her late husband Jerry known as Abraham-Hicks. I’ve listened extensively to their workshop recordings and attended many live events. One story that the Abraham-Hicks material uses to demonstrate the power of Right Timing is the story of Esther and the booking of airline tickets.

The story goes that Jerry was giving Esther a hard time about calling the airline to book tickets for their extensive travel schedule. And Esther knew she ‘should’ be calling but she just couldn’t make herself do it. Then, one evening, quite late, she got the inspiration to pick up the phone and dial. When she did, she got a delightful booking agent who had the magic touch … flights that had currently been unavailable now had seats that would coordinate with their other flights. In a matter of minutes she booked their whole fall travel schedule and had an enjoyable time doing it. An example of following the call of inspiration and “Right Timing”.

My Example with SHIFT-IT:
I have an example of Right Timing that I often share with my coaching clients when they are frustrated with the naming of their business and/or creation of their own signature systems. In the early days of creating Visual Coaching, I struggled with what to name my business and felt lots of pressure to create a unified system for my work. For a year I felt an enormous amount of pressure and was quite hard on myself that it wasn’t all coming together in the way I felt it ‘should’ (there is that ‘s’ word again).

Then, one rainy winter afternoon, a few months after returning back home to British Columbia; I had an inspiration … “SHIFT-IT” popped into my mind.

I grabbed a piece a paper and wrote it down. Then started playing with the letters to come up with little taglines for each letter (as SHIFT-IT is an acronym that sums up my seven stage visual coaching process).

Bing! Bang! Boom! In a matter of 10 minutes the name of the overall process (which became my business name) and the names of the seven stages downloaded. And, in that heightened state of creativity, I strolled over to the local coffee shop and in a gloriously fun afternoon cranked out 17 visual maps – most, with a few changes, are what you still see in my SHIFT-IT Visual Coaching Process®.

My biz name, system and tools were revealed to me when I was truly ready. After I had cleaned up some things in my personal life, after I had made another big move and relocation, after I got myself settled with a proper home and set-up, after I had a local coffee shop where I could sit and write, and after my life had been calmed down enough that I could actually HEAR that quiet voice inside of me that had the genius. Go slow to go fast!

So Chill Out:
Soooooo, if you are one of those impatient people who think it needs to all happen this Red Hot Minute … my advise to you is to CHILL OUT and respect the wisdom and timing of your creative process. You can’t skip steps!

If you need to get your Visioning/Action Plan sketched out, or, if you have lots of funky feeling resistance to your Vision, then do your resistance work to bring your negativity up into the light of day in order to SHIFT-IT (see previous issues for tons of tips and suggestions, SHIFT-IT Online Group, Thrive and Private Coaching with me and my Certified Visual Coaches).

However, after you have done that, and things still appear not to be moving … give a good look at WHAT IS actually happening in your life. Chances are changes ARE happening right under your nose … you just aren’t giving them their proper respect. Things that need to fall into place BEFORE your genius can be revealed to you ARE happening, you just aren’t noticing or appreciating them in your haste to have it all done right now dammit! Relax, your Higher Self is unfolding things in a pace and order that is brilliant. You just need to relax and trust. Trust that it is all unfolding perfectly. Your conditions are coming step-by-step into place so you can properly receive your genius and fulfill it effectively. How great is that?!!!

Recommended Resource: Elizabeth Gilbert (the author of Eat, Pray, Love) has a wonderful Tedtalk: Your Elusive Creative Genius, check out if you haven’t seen yet. We often use this talk in my Fundamentals of Interactive-Visual trainings to practice visual recording given its themes for those on a creative path.

©2012 Christina L. Merkley

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Author’s Bio: Christina Merkley, “The SHIFT-IT Coach” and creator of the SHIFT-IT System®, is a Visioning and Strategic Planning Expert specializing in Visual Thinking and Law of Attraction techniques. Based in charming Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, she works deeply with individuals, partners and conscious businesses to define and manifest what they truly want. And, trains other helping professionals in her innovative ways of working. For more information visit: and

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