Deb Sofield


Our heads are round so our thoughts can change direction

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Our heads are round so our thoughts can change direction.” Francis Picabia

Rule number one. You have the right to change your mind.

Rule number two. Read and act on rule number one…always.

If you were to ask me what I find interesting at this age in my life it is this. When someone sees the other side of an issue or learns something new or over time decides that certain things don’t matter as much as they thought, and then, through careful consideration and reflection, they make a decision to change their mind about an issue, theory or thought that they may have held for years. What continually surprises me, however, is how many of their friends, family and fans will revolt in vicious outrage against them for simply changing their mind about whatever topic they choose.

The older I am, the more I have come to realize that perhaps the reason my head is round is so my “thoughts can change direction.” Silly, you might say, until your “friends” become angry with you for straying from the fold.

I’m not sure if the outrage is that a change was made without consulting them (whoever they are) and thinking of their feelings (as if it really matters) or that they come face to face with the fact that they no longer can control the mind, actions and attitudes of another who for many years just went along with the flow because it was easier.

I just don’t understand the anger that is shown when someone chooses to change direction. To use my favorite word, I am flummoxed at the idea of being angry with someone who for all intents and purposes is still your friend, but they just happened to wake up one day and think differently about an issue.

Seems odd when you write it out on paper that so many people are, in a sense, held hostage by the outrage of others who have no real purpose in the fight but they have an expectation of what they want you to do, believe or agree with. Perhaps you just don’t care anymore about the issue or see the issue at hand and decide you have better things to do with your time.

When did it become not okay to change your mind or even your direction? And why is it an outrage to others when you choose to make a decision for yourself? And frankly, why are those around you pressing you to continue on a path you’ve grown tired of, are no longer interested in or not concerned with anymore? Simply speaking, why are those outside friends, family and co-workers, who more than likely are not a part of the equation, weighing in on your heart and mind change?

And then what are you going to do about it?

I see it often that if, due to some circumstance or enlightening or new information, you decide to change your mind, others feel the need to condemn, criticize or simply complain that you’ve changed (like that is a bad thing).

It’s funny; everyone says, “Change is good,” until you want to change and then suddenly it is a problem. And the reason it’s a problem is because it upsets the status quo.

For me, things I dismissed in my youth I’m now taking a second look at. Issues I was told didn’t matter now I am reviewing for myself. And things I was expected to believe as truth I find it wise to study and then make an informed decision that reflects my current values.

Through the years, I have changed my mind on many things and by doing so have changed my direction, so I can be part of the solution and not continue down the path of being part of the problem. I have been surprised by others who expect me to “stick to my guns,” when in reality there is no fight to be had.

The most important is the fact that, due to free will (and we all have free will), we all have the right and perhaps an obligation to make the change for the better for our families, our colleagues, our community and ourselves.

In thinking about the New Year and your desire to start the projects that you’ve been working towards, don’t be discouraged or dissuaded by those who refuse to think outside of the box that they are comfortably living in. Their heads may be round, but they are happy being a square peg choosing not to fit at all.

The hard part is that you have to decide what is best for you; and if on that journey you find that you might need to change your mind and direction on who you associate with, how you spend your money or how you use your time, friend, choose wisely. Everything you do is a reflection of who you are, not just who you want to be or how you want to be seen by others. I’m reminding you to be true to yourself.

No doubt there is a fine line when it comes to “changing the direction” on issues that affect others. If you have a moral obligation, then you need to keep it–no question about it.

However, if you’re not bound by legal, ethical or moral grounds and the issue is simply an opinion or a presupposition, then you’re probably free to disagree, change your thoughts and even change your direction if you so choose.

Now before you make any big decision that will affect others, be wise and consider the outcome. I am not suggesting you have carte blanche to do silly, ridiculous or dangerous actions because you simply want to throw off the yoke of obligation. Don’t be a fool.

If you are a person of character, you will seriously study, learn, ask, read, talk to experts, say your prayers and ask for guidance to make a wise decision for your future based on what big, amazing, open, freeing dreams and ideas that you have been given to change your direction.

What I don’t want to see is that another year goes by, and you are still bound by the made-up rules of others who do not walk in your shoes.

So as you look at the whole of your life and seriously weigh the different opportunities, needs, desires and dreams, consider what you are holding onto because “it’s the way you’ve always done it,” that pre-packaged, warmed-over, same boring line you’ve been scarfing down for years. Today, think about what it is you really want to do in this next rotation around the sun in 2017.

Set your sights on the direction of your dreams, and then watch with amazement how the changes in your thought process, large and small, will affect your newfound freedom, your energy and your vision that will set you on the right path for life.

Because, my friend, “The reason your head is round is so your thoughts can change.”

Deb Sofield

Deb Sofield is a Keynote Speaker, Author of the book, Speak without Fear – Rock Star Presentation Skills to get People to Hear What You Say and Encouragement For Your Life ~ Tough Love Memos to Help You Fight Your Battles and Change the World, Radio Talk Show Host in the Salem Network, Podcaster and President of her own Executive Speech Coaching Co., which trains women and men for success in speaking, crisis communications, presentation skills, media and message development in the U.S. and abroad.

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