As a life coach, I am always helping women step out of familiar beliefs, definitions, and lifestyles and jump off of the fence into the unknown where all the exciting, adventurous stuff is. Today was the third time I have driven to Stratford to visit my mom in the Long Term Healthcare Home I moved her into on December 24th. Yup, on Christmas Eve I was busy getting my mom out of a hospital, and into a Home. She has Dementia and this was the best move for her, and she is adjusting well. But the thing is, this is the first time I was able to drive there, and home, and not use the GPS on my Blackberry to guide me through unknown territory. And that's when it hit me... my world just got smaller.
When I first moved to Kitchener, ON, CA, I remember feeling how big it was. I loved that whenever I drove anywhere that it was like a new adventure, even if I drove down streets I have driven down before. Nothing was familiar, and so I was discovering this new place piece by piece and over and over again, because I am one of those directionally challenged chicks. Each day I would take in my new surroundings, marveling at the architecture of the buildings, the many parks, the fact that it has a thriving downtown and big Universities. Everywhere I went everything was new. And then one day I drove down a street, that in my mind I had not connected to anything or anywhere, and BAM... I knew where I was. Do you know what happened? My world instantly felt smaller.
Well, I was quite enjoying this new big world that I was slowly discovering (like really... a year and a half). I hadn't connected many dots from one destination to another, so no matter where I was I had no idea how far I was from home, and my world felt big. During that drive this morning, I connected a dot - and in that second I understood that a neural pathway in my brain was now hardwired. I now had a visual of my starting point (home), and ending point (Peoplecare, Stratford). It was as if in that very brief moment, that wonderful, delicious, expansive feeling of vastness, adventure, and undiscovered views had suddenly zoomed in. My world shrunk, and I must say, I felt a bit deflated.
Now, I know for many people, this feeling of 'big and the unknown' is more than just a bit scary... it totally freaks them out. Believe me, I've coached a ton of women who put up a good fight not to jump off the fence in the beginning, and when they finally do, they are thanking me for saving their lives (they give me way too much credit for something they did for themselves).
Here is your takeaway from my experience. If you are totally happy with every single aspect of your life, meaning that ordinary and familiar make you completely and utterly happy, then all is good in your world. However, if ordinary and familiar feel boring, restricting, painful, underwhelming, toxic, disempowering or life sucking... then, my friend, your spirit is screaming that you have switched on auto-pilot. When you are on auto-pilot, you get lost in thoughts of how much you wish your life could be different or better, and you don't take notice of anything new or exciting. You follow the same patterns every day, you beat yourself up for wanting more, and deep down inside you are crying and desiring change. You have free will, so at all times you get to choose how your life unfolds. The reason you stay in that familiar place is because of that crazy Critter Brain who is terrified of anything different. It doesn't like change because it associates change with risk and risk with danger to your life. Instead of jumping off the fence into so much more that is possible for you that you never knew existed or was possible, you stay stuck in what is familiar because familiar is what you know.
Well, that's it for today's blog. If you are ready to put that Critter Brain to rest, you know how to reach me. Just comment on this blog and reach out.
Ta Ta for now !