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Insights: Winds of Change
December 10, 2008

Winds of Change

This week’s newsletter takes it’s inspiration from the gale force South-Easterly wind that has been pummeling the Cape for at least the past week!

Clearing the Air

Here in the Cape we affectionately refer to this December phenomenon as ‘clearing the air’ before the onset of the tourist season when the weather normally tends to enter a calmer and more settled phase – no doubt out of respect for our many guests!

The Cape Doctor, loved or hated as it might be, may have inspired my column this week, but that’s not what I want to talk about.

The subject of change has been a thread running through a number of the newsletters that I have put out over the course of 2008. I don’t for one minute expect you to find that surprising because, as you know, change (for the positive) is what life coaching is all about.

I try to steer away from overtly political themes in Insights, partly because this is unknown and potentially dangerous ground for someone whose interests lie in the field of personal development and partly because the subject seldom lends itself to messages of inspiration!

Back to the sixties

But the mere mention of ‘Winds of Change’ evokes a political event of historical significance to South Africans.

In 1960, British Prime Minister, Harold Macmillan, addressed the South African parliament, saying:

“The wind of change is blowing through this continent.”

This was a reference to growing national consciousness and Britain’s impending decision to grant independence to many of its colonies.

There’s been a great deal of water that’s flowed under the bridge in almost 50 years since Macmillan’s speech – much of which has been badly ‘polluted’. But, finally, there are some encouraging signs of positive change.

Africa on the map

The recent election of Barack Obama in the US has, in an indirect way, brought more prominence to this continent and Kenya, his land of birth, in particular. Almost as if taking his lead from the charismatic ex countryman, Raila Odinga, Prime Minister of Kenya, has had the guts to stand up and speak out about removing the tyrannical Robert Mugabe from power in Zimabawe.

My experience of Zimbabweans of all races, is that they are kind, gentle, well-spoken and patient people. That they have been subjected to thirty years of abject misrule, corruption and misappropriation by Mugabe and his cronies is a gross injustice to them.

But at long last it seems that the writing is on the wall for a man who completely lost his moral compass. Zimbabweans deserve so much more than the complete mess that their government has created for them. Good luck to them!

Times are changing

In South Africa I believe we should welcome the recent political changes. Whichever party one supports, the notion of a strong and healthy opposition can only be a good thing as it holds those in office to account to the electorate. For as long as I can remember, South Africa has had one dominant party and weak political opposition – and in my opinion we’ve been worse off for that.

Yes, times are changing.

But enough of politics for now.

As you reflect on the year that has almost passed, how do you feel about the changes that have occurred in your life in 2008?

Do you create change or suffer from it?

My guess is that if change has happened to you, you’ll look at it with some trepidation and possible resentment – but if it is change that you have deliberately and willingly instigated, it’s likely that you will look back on your actions with much pride and satisfaction.

You see, the degree of happiness and contentment we experience is largely governed by the actions that we take in response to opportunities that are presented to us (albeit sometimes in disguise!)

The joy of taking inspired action

Taking inspired action is one of the most liberating and satisfying things you can do for yourself. Procrastination - or putting off taking the action that your inner voice tells you is necessary because you ‘need to think things through’ - is a real killjoy and the source of much frustration and dissatisfaction.

When you take inspired action you are summoning the forces of nature because you are embarking on a path of change, which, by default involves the creation of something new. When you procrastinate, you stagnate. Your amazing creative powers are reined in and cut off from the flow of creative energy from the Universe.

Reflection and renewal

So – as I gaze out over the scenic but thoroughly windswept waters of False Bay, let me invite you to reflect on 2008 and what you have created for yourself and your family this year. As you do so, think about 2009 and how you can renew and revisit your creative power through taking inspired action when your inner voice prompts you to.

Pre-Christmas special

By the way, if becoming a life coach is a decision you’ve been seriously considering - but putting off, for whatever reason - now’s the time to act. In the seasonal spirit of goodwill every New Insights Life Coach Training Programme ordered before Christmas will qualify for our exclusive Early Bird discount – that’s a huge R3,420 reduction off the standard retail price of R18,204.66. (Just remember that to receive it before Christmas you should order by the 19th.)

That’s a great deal that represents a truly gold-plated investment in the most important person in your life!

With my best wishes as always


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