Maybe you’re like me: you think that life isn’t meant to be happy all of the time and that life is mostly a struggle from day-to-day. If you’re like me, you hang on to a job, relationship or situation you don’t love because you’re supposed to stick it out until it gets better.
We quietly accept fewer and fewer happy times so we can keep all of the moving parts of our lives moving – albeit moving along as if driving a jeep on a pothole-filled dirt road (slow and bumpy!) – and stress becomes our baseline emotion.
When this happens, we become stuck and we aren’t sure how to unstick ourselves.
So, if you’re like me, you go to a shrink for a while – and all you get is a pile of snotty tissues.
Or you read a bunch of self-help books and meditate in front of 108 white candles. But your ass ends up sore and all you want to do is scratch the itch on your nose…
A cleanse! Yes, you try the lemon-cayenne pepper cleanse thinking that starvation will lead you to an epiphany! Instead, it leads you to a box of Entemann’s chocolate chip cookies.
Now, you’re a stuck, snotty, sore-assed, over-sugared mess who not only cries at ASPCA commercials, but every time you hear any song by Sarah McLaughlin.
So what do you do when you’re stuck and depressed?
Well, you have two options:
- Stay your current course and keep the status quo; or,
- Blow everything up and change.
I know, you’re probably bristling at the idea of a Big Life Change, but hear me out.
Change is scary – I know. I stayed stuck for so many years because the idea of making a Big Life Change seemed so out of reach for me. As if I wasn’t special enough of a person to have something new and good and exciting in my life.
But the minute I buckled my seatbelt on the plane heading to Peru – the start of my year-long around-the-world journey – I thought “what the hell took you so long?”
So yes, the actual mechanism of change – the lead up to the Big Life Change – is scary as shit! But I promise you, it’s the scariest part of the whole thing.
But when you are Monday morning quarterbacking your life after the Big Life Change, you too will be asking yourself “what took so long?”.
Because the actual change – the new job, new city, new life, new whatever – isn’t the scary thing.
The scary thing is THE FEAR OF THE CHANGE – which is why so many of us never make a move. Yet, most of us know that fear is just a thought we choose to believe – like believing the butterfly fluttering by your head is the soul of your deceased grandmother. Lots of people believe that.
So why is it so hard to believe that we CAN make a Big Life Change – and be fine? That we will actually be successful and healthy and happy as a result? That we WON’T end up broke and destitute and alone?
Get comfortable with your fear…
I say you get real comfortable with your fear – lure her in to become your best friend. Get to know her. Know everything about what makes her fearful mind work.
And then, after you’ve become best of friends with your Fear, graciously tell her to take a hike. “Thank you for trying to keep me safe, but I’m ready to take a shot at the unknown and you’re not invited. Adios, Fear.”
I know you’re scared about what’s on the other side of the change. You can’t script it and that’s scary.
But…what if it’s so much better than where you’re stuck right now?
(And, do you really want to die with a big “what if?”)