Taking a good look in the mirror
You’re taking a trip and following given directions to reach a destination. You turn right and left at the appropriate junctions, even though the signs don’t follow logically. Then the signs disappear altogether, but you convince yourself that they will turn up again soon. You carry on. By the time the idea that you might be lost fully enters your mind, you cannot bear to go all the way back. You conclude that this new road surely must connect to where you want to be. You drive for hours, days, years…
Bewildered and exhausted you might at some point concede that you have travelled miles in the wrong direction. You sought new possible roads, but faced road closures, flat tyres. The persistent urge to keep going like everyone else, made you put miles on the clock rather than put time in travelling the right miles. Your travel journal holds separate and mostly random adventures.
It’s the story of the Exponential Rocket. The rocket that launches successfully but is just the smallest degree out of line at the start. Once continuing on this trajectory, it ends up crashing a long way off its target. Have you launched something that didn’t fully reach its target, or stranded somewhere miles off track? Have you made something a success to the outside world but inside you’re ready to move on? Is what you have now, not what you want?
The world doesn’t allow for adjustments. Admitting being wrong is the same as admitting guilt. Stopping and changing direction without a sack full of money is synonym to failure. We live amongst career expectations that silently tell us to choose and do one thing. Do one thing and accumulatively add to it, building a thicker and more expansive web along the way with more responsibilities and successes. When did we humans become so one-dimensional against a backdrop of endless possibilities, always accessible knowledge in an era where distances are easier to bridge than ever?
Living and working under one label is a strain when you can be standing under an umbrella of talent you want to draw on, but can’t. We introduce ourselves by name and by what we do. This says little about who we are. Some surrender to the way it is and repeat what they once learned, confirming the narrative that life is supposed to be lived and paid for in a certain way. Over time this conditioning becomes all they know. Given choice those people have forgotten what their specific talents are and say “I don’t know” or “It can’t be done” to everything.
Others feel consistently unfulfilled, but not quite unhappy enough to take a leap. They need to conserve energy to keep the mill churning. When wondering, they do so with old filters and so nothing ever truly appeals. It doesn’t fit the mould.
We ignore signs and symptoms that we might be off track. It’s a mind over matter thing. Outward success is more important in many cases than inward acknowledgment. What does on track mean and according to whom? Who is doing something that fuels and inspires them and gives them meaning and purpose. My estimate from 23 years of coaching conversations is not many at all.
That means seas of untapped potential and resources . . .
The gap between where you are and where you want to be, is painful. It is hard to swim upstream and do something different from what is expected of you. You don’t need to spend months in a therapists’ chair to work out ways of getting closer to who you are, read every personal development book, or go on retreat to find yourself. If you don’t want what you have, then it is tomorrow that counts. A good look in the mirror, some thought provoking questions, honest answers, the ability to challenge yourself and the balls to do something about it. It’s never too late to be who you want to be and be fulfilled with what you have.
Are you ready to reinvent, re-shape, innovate and transition your life, your career, your business?