When we’re on the hamster wheel of autopilot, we truly believe that we’re showing up as our genuine self.
We made the plan.
We set the goals.
We made the lists.
We’re checking the boxes.
We’re doing what we’re ‘suppose’ to do.
Things are getting done.
Life is going well, . . . right?
Yet, what’s not visible to us, is that somewhere along the way, we’ve lost ourselves and are going through the motions – influenced and molded by the everyday expectations and pressures of life and societal norms.
Until the nudge comes.
Something inside us seems a little off. Then there’s that fleeting moment when thoughts run through our mind. “Is this all there is?” “Is this what you want to do?” “Is this what you believe?” And we realize that we’re not as joyful as we once were.
And we dismiss the nudge and move through life.
And it shows up again when we least expect it. We take pause and maybe this time, we think “Isn’t there more?” for just a fleeting moment . . . And again we move on.
Have you noticed that little voice? Have you felt that little nudge?
The Nudge from Change
Life around us continues to evolve. World events, contrary beliefs compounded by a pandemic has exacerbated our need to re-evaluate, question and re-prioritize all that we thought were true and necessary. Events unearth the floor beneath us – or need I say, unearth and challenge our values and beliefs which leaves us with rocky footing.
What we held true and felt comfortable with may now feel misaligned. The nudge gets more frequent, maybe even more intense. We stop to think or is it instinctively that we re-evaluate and see with clarity what we couldn’t see before.
Is your nudge tugging harder?
I heard the nudge many times throughout my life. I ignored it until I couldn’t any longer. My inflection point came through the reverberance of unfulfillment and lack of joy within a sea of great success. Life was heavy, yet such beauty and lightness around me. I remember having such clarity, such conviction at a point in time of my life. Yet, I felt it had all vanished and left unrest and uncertainty. How could it just disappear and be replaced with apathy and numbness? I struggled to get my footing in such foreign territory.
There was that nudge again. This time it came as violent as a 2×6 to my head. (Apparently, I’m slow to hear, but it had persistence as it always does)
This time, I stopped and picked my head up. I looked around and within. And with clarity, I the startling truth:
I was living someone else’s dream, navigating with a GPS that belonged to somebody else’s road to success!
Shaped and influenced by family who had all good intentions. Shaped by circumstances of the corporate success ladder and because of societal norms, I would have been crazy not to pursue. My perspective had become jaded over time. The incessant pace of career and commitment overshadowed everything else in my world. The adrenaline was consuming. The success trophies hypnotic. The incremental changes had shifted me so far away from what I held most dear and what was intrinsic to my core being and my soul’s desires. The internal friction was a continual tug of war. I needed to release the battle of the forces and lay down the gauntlet, in order for the genuine me to re-emerge and to be joyful again.
Embarking on the Journey of Self Reflection
There’s that moment when you know you need to walk away and blow it all up. Unchain yourself from what’s been holding you back. That’s the scariest moment. Fight or flight. And so many times I chose hold – to do nothing. Making no choice is a choice, except it leaves you paralyzed in the abyss, until you can right end yourself to see the light and swim upwards. I had been floating in the abyss for so long. Numbed to survive. Following the status quo to not buck the tide.
My worth had become associated with my work. It was time to take control of who I was and what I wanted.
Looking Inward to Shine Outward
All the answers we seek are inside of us. Like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, we need to take the journey to truly understand what we are searching for and how we can achieve it. There’s no easy path, no short cut. However, there is a unique magic and genius inside all of us. Our quest is to find and embrace our true gifts. But first, we need to create the space for our hearts and mind to open up and reveal them. My introspection revealed questions that rose above like a swirling beacon.
Who were you as a child?
What stirs your soul?
What would you do if you weren’t afraid?
Monumental questions about my life came crashing down upon me. It was through this nudge, that I stopped to see, even though I instinctively knew deep down that there was much more – a life with greater meaning that was the extension of my soul fulfilled through a greater purpose.
Yet, so many times, I dismissed the nudge, until something greater than me forced a change. So before that happens, why not step into your power. Be the pilot not the passenger and find the life that will ignite your soul through your genuine self.
Why not now?
Bring the Veil Down and See Your Truth
Has the path you’ve followed been someone else road? Surely the mileage on that road has built armor that’s kept the genuine you from shining through. Armor is a great outfit for survival. Yet, the longer the road is traveled, the thicker the armor gets and the harder it is to move and less we truly know ourselves. We’ve numbed ourselves down. The joy is gone. Time to break free.
In searching for a new, let go of what IS and just BE. Surrender to the uncertainty with no expectation of the outcome. While that may seem inconceivable and daunting, it is from this place of freedom and release that you can open yourself up to see and feel what is your truth and what are the possibilities. Close your eyes. Sit with that for awhile . . . What do you see? What do you feel?
Lead from Your Heart, Your Head Will Follow
For the longest time I was trapped by the belief that soulfulness and success couldn’t exist together. I’ve come to know that not to be true. The two can exist harmoniously.
I’ve naturally been heart over head. Yet, the people throughout my life either didn’t understand or embrace it or it just wasn’t in their DNA. Surely, it was in mine. And after years of adapting to what was considered the norm, I just accepted that I was the anomaly. Until the nudge got too loud. Until the void got too big. It wasn’t until the pain of not being who I truly was, was greater than the fear of finding a new path forward.
I embarked on a journey to being open to see where it took me. I surrendered to find what I needed. Did the deep work and the feelings and emotions emerged and came rushing like the spring rivers in Montana. Heart centered, heart forward with the soulfulness of the earth.
Vulnerability lives here.
Courage leads the way.
So sit and do nothing. Stopping to BE and to just detach and daydream. Maybe sit with a cup of coffee with your hands cupped around the circle of warmth. Enjoy your surroundings and just BE. Have no expectation to the outcome. It is in those moments the gems emerge and the nuggets of truth reveal themselves.
Release Your Shoulds
Are you living your life according to ‘should’? I know I was. When I think back, I would hear myself saying “but I’m supposed to”. How many times have you heard yourself say that? Why are decisions predicated on ‘should’ vs ‘get to’?
I reflected on my life and the pivotal decisions I made. So many of my shoulds didn’t support the true me. So many of my shoulds were from societal norms or other people’s rules.
Are you living according to your wants and desires or are you shackled by your shoulds? Make your list and then ask yourself – is it because I should or is it because I get to?
The World is Your Vibrational Mirror
We are all energy. When you show up and place your wants and needs into the world, it hears you. Your words and resonance have impact. It’s a dance of push and pull. Our vibrations are felt and they can attract or they can repel.
Have you noticed when you’re in that place of abundance (your mindset), things start to click. Opportunities fall into place. Unexpected people show up to help you. And the abundance begets abundance.
Now think about converse situations when you (or maybe people you know) have been in that mindset of scarcity, playing the victim and being the passenger. Life feels heavy. Things are harder than they need to be. The dark cloud hangs over. Circumstances spiral downhill.
It’s no surprise. Change your mindset and change your resonance with the world.
Be in a place of gratitude. Getting there is easier said than done. I know. I get that because for the longest time I would write the list and it felt like just a list. Yes, I was grateful for those things, but I didn’t feel the warmth in my heart and the uplift of my soul. And then one day it just happened. Practice and take the time to work at it and you’ll know when you’ve arrived in that place.
Here’s a game that I play with one of my friends — What’s the one moment of bliss that happened today? Maybe it was taking 2 minutes to play fetch with your dog and his little playful growl sent you into a laugh that made your belly tingle. How do you see other moments in your day – that make you laugh, giggle or just bring a little smile to your face. Those are you moments of gratitude that increase your cup of abundance.
There are moments that make us stop and take pause? The question is, are you paying attention to the nudge?