Do you actively try and work out why you aren’t where you want to be?
The only reason we are not where we want to be in life is because we are the ones holding ourselves back.
That could be due to a few reasons: Fear of change, fear of failure, fear of what others will think.
If you think about it, we are mirrors for each other, so if you change it inadvertently makes people in your life question themselves.
So many of us end up choosing careers, partners, livelihoods and our passion based on what we think others will think of us. Will we fit in?
Yet there is another layer to this — we trap ourselves in our identities of who we think we are — we stay labelled to our profession, our partners, our hobbies even if they are detrimental to our health and happiness.
There are so many ways in which we allow our identities and other people’s perceptions to make our choices, and you can end up spending a lot of time in your life playing a role that isn’t you. It’s time to break out of these roles you’ve been holding yourself in.
This year is an amazing example of where we are all being forced to change the way we do things. The only reason it’s uncomfortable is because we are identified with our lives as we knew them.
It’s important to honour the grief that this brings to each of us. Part of the problems with this world wide collapse we are seeing of what we once knew is the undigested grief that so many of us are carrying around with us.
It affects the way we love, live and come together keeping us limited and polarised. Of course the media is playing a big role in this, but ultimately we are in control of our life.
What we consume (media), what we believe in and our emotions and how we manage them.
Yet the stories and identities we live by often keep running in the background without getting regular updates. What served us at 17yrs, could be well out of date by the time we’re 35yrs. But until we really look at our lives, they keep us in old limited ways.
We describe these old ways as our myths. The myths in which we live our life. And we can break these down into cultural, family and personal myths:
Culture may be defined as the abstract values, beliefs, and perceptions of the world — i.e. a world view — that shape, and are reflected in, a people’s behaviour.
People are not born with a “culture”; they learn “culture”. People develop and maintain cultures to deal with basic problems like survival and other issues (geographical, social, economic, philosophical, etc.) that concern them.
Examples — The Disney Fairytale, boys don’t cry/show emotion, success = fancy car, big bank account, big house, hard work leads to success, our chosen career should last our lifetime.
The family myth is a blend of fact and fantasy preserving important events and notable personalities in the family’s history. Family myths are narratives which include information about rituals as they were enacted in previous generations.
Examples — Family profession (doctors), family status, we are a proud family, we are a successful family — Pressure to live as successfully and happily as the family
A personal myth is a constellation of beliefs, feelings, images, and rules — operating largely outside of conscious awareness — that interprets sensations, constructs new explanations, and directs behaviour.
Personal myths speak to the broad concerns of identity (Who am I?), direction (Where am I going?), and purpose (Why am I going there?).
Examples — Fit, strong, reliable, I am a coach, I am a parent, I am a partner…
For me, my identity of working in Olympic sport kept kept me locked in a profession that had become a trap. I was shielded by the persona that people put on me when they heard what I did for a living. This led me to maintain a role in professional sport to protect this image, despite being deeply unfulfilled and unhappy. People ultimately knew what I did for a career, they didn’t know who I was.
When I finally realised and had the courage to leave, I became free, happy, fulfilled in the projects I wanted to do. And I had nothing to prove to anyone anymore. And this is why I do what I do for a living now. It’s a heart centred business rather than one protecting an identity of perceived “success”.
This requires reflection, time spent without distraction. We are in a time of unprecedented threat and change. We can stick our heads in the sand and pretend things are normal, or we can take this opportunity to create change in our lives for the good of all.
If you’re still reading this then that tells me you are searching for a new way. Allow that in, be kind to yourself and recognise more and more of us are not happy with the current status quo. With that realisation comes the confusion of where to start.
That’s why we begin our 5 stage process to personal mastery with self care. This involves learning how to balance your rest, nutrition, movement and mindset leaving you calmer, happier and more resilient to stress.
FREE GUIDE: The 4 simple steps towards personal mastery. You'll learn how to effectively balance your rest, nutrition, movement and mindset.