Step Into The Wild Unknown, Become Who You Are Meant To Be
There is a saying, if you want to change your life, change your thoughts. Thoughts are like a series of stepping stones across a river. Some of the stones are slippery from the moss as the water runs over them. Some of them are unstable and rock as you step on them. Some of the stones are tilted with edges that cut like a knife and hard to walk across. Some of the stones are firmly planted like a foundation stone. We can’t cross the river without stepping on the stones. We choose the stones to step on. Each stone we walk across, becomes part of our life’s path. Some trip us up and we fall into the water. Some support us, some don’t. Life demands change, but it always comes back to us choosing.
We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what we are.
– Max Depree
I am listening to the Lord of The Rings soundtrack as I write this. The Lord of the Rings is one of my favorite books and it really exemplifies change, with the journey of the characters. Some like Frodo and Samwise were challenged to greatness. They had failures when it seemed like the evil of the ring would destroy them. They wanted to give up, because what was asked of them was so hard. They kept walking towards their destination and that journey forged them, like a hammer hitting them again and again as they walked through the fiery tests. Each challenge brought them closer to the great characters they had the potential to be.
Inspiration and growth only come from adversity and from challenge – from stepping away from what’s comfortable and familiar and stepping out in the unknown
– Ben Saunders
Boromir failed in his duty. Gollum swung from bad to good to bad again. Saurman fell from being a protector of the world to its destroyer. So many were tested and found wanting, not because it was their destiny to fail, or that they were inherently evil. It was because they stopped trying to be good and wise. It was easier to let the bad take over. Sometimes we think that we have lost of the best part of us, like when Gandalf went down into the fires with the Balrog, and we don’t know how we can continue. It seems like all is lost. But like Gandalf coming back as a new being, we can always be reborn. As long as we keep walking, the way will open before us. When we push the edges of the known universe, we discover new lands to explore.
I always find beauty in things that are odd and imperfect – they are much more interesting.
– Marc Jacobs
Have you ever monitored the thoughts that cross your mind? The things you think, but filter and so don’t say? An interesting exercise is to sit on a bench at a mall, park or beach – somewhere where there are lots of people. Turn on the recording button on your phone and just record your thoughts as you watch the people walk by. When you replay it, notice if the majority of your thoughts were positive or negative. Where you funny? Quirky? Profound? Think about your favorite TV shows or movies. The characters in the book, movie, TV shows that you remember and fall in love with, are the ones that are quirky – Spock or Data from Star Trek, or maybe the science nerd from NCIS Abby or Dr. Mallard. Punky Brewster with the funny socks. The characters on The Big Bang Show. The list goes on and on. Find the beauty in you being you.
Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.
– George Bernard Shaw
Asking yourself questions about your thoughts can provide useful insight into thoughts that you can work on changing. Whenever anything went wrong for my mom, she had a habit of saying, “I could just kill myself”. She didn’t even realize she was saying it until one day my son said to her after something happened, “I know grandma you could just kill yourself”. She was horrified that she had said this so often that her young grandson said it back to her, and she stopped saying it.
Close some doors. Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because they no longer lead somewhere.
As you get curious and not judgmental about the thoughts, dig beneath them to see what patterns are in your life that you didn’t realize were there. We all have them. How many times have you been driving to or from work and realized that you are missing moments in your drive – that suddenly you are home or at work and you don’t remember part of the drive? Shifting the patterns is what makes real transformation of your thoughts. I have hated spiders since I was a kid and got bit when I was sleeping on my hand. When I was talking a college creative writing course years ago, they had us read a book by Sue Hubbell. Her husband and her were both professors at a University and he decided one day to walk away from tenure and go live in the Ozarks. A few months later, he left Sue also and she wrote about that year in her life where everything fell apart and she was left with no money and no job and a house in the middle of nowhere.
Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.
– Wayne W. Dyer
Each chapter was written around something in nature. One chapter was about spiders. When I finished that chapter, my relationship with spiders changed. While I still don’t “like” them, I am no longer terrified of them. This chapter for me highlighted the fact that when we learn more about something, it changes our relationship with it. It takes the fears away, because we removed the unknown from the equation. When you go beyond what you think is real, you step into the unknown. While the unknown is filled with fears, each day our relationship with it changes, because more becomes known. Like walking down a path through the fog – we may not be able to see far into the distance, but each step reveals what was hidden before. Just keep stepping on the next stone, taking the next step in your life. Make this quote your mantra, and you will have an amazing life.
Today I create a WONDERFUL NEW DAY and a WONDERFUL NEW FUTURE.
– Louise Hay