Something not working out the way you wanted, hoped for or planned?
I invite you to consider you're part of the problem--and 100% part of the solution. Before you go there, this isn't about guilt. This is about responsibility. When I learned the distinction between fault and responsibility, it changed my life. Maybe you will find it helpful, too.
When we become responsible for areas in life where we are stuck, we can actually do something about it--which is what we want, right? Have you ever waited on someone or something to provide for your needs? It can be difficult. Now that we are all adults, we don't have to do that. And that either sounds really scary or really exciting to you. Being responsible for ourselves begins with being able to make room, in our heads and our lives, for what we actually want.
It's startling to realize how powerful we are. It's difficult, actually, for many to understand or comprehend our abilities--so we often give over to excuses or reasons to bring our potential back down to a manageable bite-sized snack. And we also sometimes self-sabotage so we can continue to "play small", as Marianne Williamson likes to say.
One way we do this is to fill our time and our lives with things that don't bring us closer to the happiness we want and deserve. This might sound incredibly vague and lofty, which may not be helpful. Let me be more clear: you're probably doing something right now that is depriving you of the very thing you want.
Yes, yes you are.
How do I know? Because I do it every day and I coach client after client who does it, too. It's human. It's something we all do and it may be difficult to swallow, especially if the thing you want is REALLY important to you and you've been wanting it for a long time and have been doing everything in your power to make it happen.
It would be difficult to accept that you're in the way of having it, right?
What if the most powerful thing you could do, in the very moment, is see that? What would happen if you stopped and allowed yourself to admit that you're both part of the problem AND that itself was the key to the solution? Does it meant what you want or need will happen overnight? Probably not. Are there many other variables and factors influencing our lives? Definitely.
But what if, what if, you were able to step outside of your current day-to-day and did things ever so differently and it changed your life forever? Would you do it? Why aren't you, already?
Well, it might be for two reasons, both of which I know because I've studied them personally for about 16 years and academically for the past few years.
1) You don't see where you're stuck.
My favorite Buddhist teacher, Pema Chödrön, talks about being stuck as being "entangled". She says to get disentangled, we first have to KNOW that we are and WHERE we are entangled. Does that make sense? Some people are so focused on the frustration of being stuck, they rarely stop and step back and see themselves as being stuck. They are already in the anger and resistance of it. When we can let go of those feelings, we can just be and hang out with the stuck and, interestingly, we can see it much more clearly. If this all sounds really weird or confusing, just hang out with it for a second. Try not feeling frustrated and just sit with being stuck, without any feelings attached to it. Now, see what I mean?
Now, describe it. Give more details about where you're stuck. Don't get caught in being angry or sad, just say, "I'm stuck in the wrong job" or "I'm stuck on solving this problem with my business". Just try that.
Where are you stuck?
2) The momentum of your conditioning.
Ok, neat. Now you know where you're stuck. Now, you're up against what my therapist calls, "the momentum of our conditioning". He may have gotten that from someone else, but I don't know who. We just talk about it, often, because I have some pretty strong conditioning. We all do, actually. Our conditioning are the habits and patterns and ways of thinking and being that keep us who we are and doing what we are doing--even when we don't like it. Bummer, right? Yes and no. The bad news is, it's painful. The good news, we can change. That's why I write so much about change, because I want to provide people with the tools to overcome their conditioning, especially conditioning that's getting unwanted results. When we get momentum going in the direction we WANT, we get closer to having what we want--in any aspect of our lives.
These two factors are probably causing a lot of your stuckness. To get more of what you want on a regular basis, you'll need to make room for it, in some way--or many ways. That starts with clearly seeing what you're doing that's getting in your way, and not everyone is ready, willing and able to take that on.
Are you ready?
Recently, I was saying how I was really craving time with friends I love who live far away. My conditioning was telling me I was too busy, I couldn't afford it or that I wasn't able to take time away from grad school and my business. This time, I overrode the conditioning and made space in my calendar. I booked a flight to Wisconsin to see one of my best friends I hadn't seen in five years. FIVE YEARS. I went from longing to fulfilled--it was that easy.
Where do you need to make room right now? What do you need to change so you can make space for something you want and need?
image courtesy of http://www.amandalavergne.com/blog/hot-child-in-the-city-2/