One night I woke up at 2am struck with an idea about life and how it all fits together. Being only half awake I wasn’t sure if it was brilliant or just pain silly but I wrote it down all the same and drifted off back to sleep. In the morning I came back to it and started testing it for flaws and to my delight it held up pretty well. That was several months ago and since then what have I done with this idea? Pretty much nothing! I’ve just sat on it.
Why have I not shared what I originally through was a pretty damn good idea? Well I still thought it was a good idea, that hadn’t changed but I was making excuses that pushed it back. I was telling myself that I was saving it for a really good blog post and that I didn’t want to write it until I had the time to do it justice but on reflection I think I was just afraid of putting it out there.
So what prompted me to share now. Last Friday night I went to an awesome workshop run by InsideOut, at the start of the workshop founder Campbell Butterss shared this vision of how life can get small and messy. I thought it was brilliant and I also saw a lot of my own vision in his. That was the start of stepping towards sharing. Later in the workshop one of the facilitators Miroslav Petrovic took me to a place where I had to sit with and breath through the story I regularly tell myself about not being good enough. To sit with all the harsh expectations I put on myself and to breathe into the emotions and the tightness in my chest was invaluable for me. In going into the feelings behind the story I was able to loosen its grip and step through a place of fear.
After my three paragraph introduction it might seem like what I’ve got to share is pretty huge. The truth is it isn’t really that profound, but I wanted to be real about how much I’d built it up to be a big deal in my head in the hope that people are inspired to share their struggles and break through their fear. And maybe just maybe the journey of sharing holds a bigger message than my idea ever did.
Now finally to this idea about life; so I was looking for a way to explain how I’d experienced figuring out who I am at my core and how I had detangled a lot of the rubbish that blocked me from knowing my true self. This is how I see it:
When you’re born you have a few key puzzle pieces that fit together perfectly and that’s who you are in your truest purist form. As you go through life and have experiences you begin to pick up new puzzle pieces. Some of these pieces belong to you; fitting well with your original puzzle pieces and others really aren’t your puzzle pieces at all, they’re often pieces that others have pushed on you and led you to believe are part of who you are. These puzzle pieces that don’t belong begin to cause a lot of problems. You see we’re always trying to complete our puzzles and when something doesn’t fit what do we do? We pull apart the whole puzzle and try and make it work thinking that maybe there was something wrong in the core puzzle and if we do a little rearranging we should be able to make it work. There in lies the mess.
Over the years we can collect so much rubbish along with our true stuff that it can turn into one big fat epic mess. While some lucky humans naturally get better at discerning what’s theirs most of us get to some point where we end up questioning why we’re unhappy, unfulfilled and struggling with elements of our lives.
So then how do you then begin to sort out what pieces you need in your puzzle and what pieces just make life harder. Let me start by saying brilliant puzzles take time and dedication there’s no quick and easy fix but it can definitely be worked through. It becomes a matter of figuring out when you picked up certain puzzle pieces then deciding what needs to stay and what needs to go. When that puzzle gets a little less messy and you begin to really be able to see who you are, let me just say that life gets awesome!
For me journaling, reading all sorts of self help books, my yoga teacher training and working with some psychologists really helped to trace back to when I started having certain limiting beliefs about myself and forming certain views of the world. I think this process of building the picture of who we are is always a work in progress and it’s evolving nature is part of the magic of life.
If the puzzle was perfect and finished what more would there be to do.
Enjoy the journey, laugh at the confusion, breathe into the moment and know that everything happens for a reason.