Rethinking How to Change Gracefully

I recently received a Certificate in the Foundations of NeuroLeadership.  Over the six months we studied about the latest in brain research and its impact on teams, problem solving, personal effectiveness, decision making and facilitating change.  The AGES model has proven an invaluable model for giving myself more grace.  AGES is about giving Attention to the learning, Generating new connections, identifying Emotional responses and Spacing between reviews. AGES has brought me back to re-examining and providing time for my brain to “reformat” as I put space between the learnings.  I appreciate even more the value of taking time to refresh and integrate learning with new applications of what I know.  The experience heightened the importance of providing time to integrate the old methods and pathways to what I am learning.  But the key was to act so my learning moved from knowledge to wisdom.  Part of my “ah-hah’s” of the model moved me to attend to my emotions on more occasions — taking time to identify them, examine them more deeply and use them to better understand.  Changing requires purposeful steps to revisit our learning, consider the progress made, and have a celebration to mark the occasion of progress.

Each area of study provided me multiple new ways of considering the steps to take, identifying what worked, suggesting what might work better and realizing what I need to eliminate.  The research on the process of change reaffirmed that it has steps that often are more organic and reiterative than linear, and that honoring the time it takes to personalize change is key.  The discussion on emotional regulation highlighted the option of not putting myself in an environment that habitually causes frustration and limits my self-control in other life areas [such as eating].  The overarching impact of clear expectations in selecting steps forward for myself and setting the stage for helping others is a thought that is like blazing lights of Las Vegas – not only bright but blinking as to say “do not forget, do not forget clear expectations.”

Paula Sommer

Paula Sommer is Managing Owner of Dynamic WorkSystems, LLC, an Arlington, Texas based consulting company focused on tailored solutions that leverage an organization’s human assets. She received a Bachelor of Science magna cum laude degree from Louisiana Tech University and holds numerous certifications related to quality methods, thinking, coaching and strategic management.

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