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Cecily Sommers on The Art of Reinvention

Cecily Sommers, Author & Founder, The Push Institute (l) and Debra Siena, President, Midtown Health (r)Cecily Sommers, Futurist and Global Trends Analyst, received a standing ovation for her presentation on "The Art of Reinvention" at the 6th Annual Women’s Leadership Summit which was held today at IHRSA 2015 in Los Angeles.

Sommers, author of the book "Think Like a Futurist", said, "The future is a faith-based venture. You have to have faith that what you’re thinking of doing is worth doing and that you are the one to do it." 

She noted that we find it difficult to change because we are wired for stability. But, we are always evolving so we must pay attention to the signals that tell us that it’s time to change our form or role. You know it’s time to change when you start feeling tension – unhappiness in your current form (role) and the pull to do something else, Sommers said. 

She outlined 6 things that get in the way of change and how to deal with them:

  1. Finding Fault (blame). Step away, release the “shoulds”, reference the facts, and make a decision.
  2. Arguing with Reality (denial). If something’s not working, release the expectation that it will ever be different. Accept that you can’t change it, and move on.
  3. Needing to Know the Answer (fear). If you’re doing something new, you’re not going to know the answer. Release the need to know the outcome and commit to figuring it out as you go.
  4. Focusing on Busyness (avoidance). To do lists outweigh the hours in the day. Give yourself permission to say “no” to the things you can’t fully commit to.
  5. Whining (inaction). Venting is fine; just recognize that behind every complaint is a request – decide what it is that you want (your request) and do something about it.
  6. Feeling Stuck (resignation). Know the difference between acceptance and resignation. If you are stuck, it’s an issue of self-esteem and your lack of belief that you can change. Take small steps to find what you like doing. Ask for help if you can’t find a way out.

"We are happiest when we are being stretched and contributing value," Sommers added. "When we stop feeling stretched, we need to pay attention to what is calling us in a new direction."

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