Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
and sorry I could not travel both…
In any given moment, we all make choices, decisions that lead us down some road taking us to somewhere that we hope will arrive us at exactly where we want to be.
We don’t always end up there, do we?
That’s where the fear creeps in.
We get stuck right before a pivotal, life altering change is about to happen because we’re too afraid to make an UNEQUIVOCAL decision. I’m not talking about wiffle-waffling or going two steps forward and then three steps back. All of that is a diversion tactic designed to keep us from the REAL issue… and the real issue is this:
What if I choose something only to later figure out that I should’ve gone the other way?
Whew… Breathe that in for a minute. Scary, right?
Here’s what’s more scary: if we REALLY trusted ourselves to make the right decision in the first place, we wouldn’t go into major life decisions second-guessing our inner knowing.
Before you get annoyed at the truth of this, let’s go there for a minute.
The fear of going the wrong way isn’t about going the wrong way. It’s about two things:
1) Not trusting yourself
2) Not trusting life
If both of those were solidly in place before making a major life decision, the fear would still be there but it wouldn’t be crippling.
So how do you get over the fear of going the wrong way?
3 things you can do:
1) Accept that you’re going to go the wrong way and choose to learn, not judge. You’re going to make mistakes. You’re going to mess up. You’re going to land in relationships that don’t serve you and make career moves that are deceptively tempting and wind up being disastrously dissatisfying. You will try some life paths out that seem good at the time but, looking back, you’ll say, “What was I thinking?” You will fall short. You will lose heart and faith and hope in moments when they are critical and guess what? They’re only moments. If you can accept, in a moment of defeat, that it’s temporary, you’ve come a long way in putting yourself on the RIGHT path.
All paths lead to your destiny.
The specific path you take might take longer than other paths will to get there but, at the end of the day, your life purpose combines all experiences so that you DO get there.
2) Accept that you’ve got all the answers. Guess what? You do… Louise L. Hay says a very powerful thing, “Within you are all the answers to all the questions you’re ever going to ask.” How would making major life decisions change in your mind if you KNEW that this was true? What would happen to your pre-decision making anxiety if you knew that ALL things work together for your good? Hmmm, yeah, you’d take a lot more risks without cold sweats at night and sitting on the fence by day.
3) Embrace the fact that nobody does it right. You heard me. Even the seemingly “perfect” people doubt themselves before they dive in… and they screw up just as much as the rest of us do (they just hide it better). Nobody gets it all right. When you look at people of great achievement, it’s not that they don’t fall from grace. It’s that they never fall from grace and think, “This is the end of me!” Nope. They dust themselves off. They put a band aid on their emotional wounds. They may even take a break and go on a meditation retreat or a spa day to do some self-healing and self-care. But they do not give up. They fall, they heal, they learn and they go again. For them, the adventure is in the going again. That’s called a paradigm shift. Try it:)
At the end of the day, as much as I love Robert Frost’s poem, I don’t think he got the very essence of life:
It’s not about the path you choose.
It’s about who you choose to be while on any path.
That’s what makes all the difference…