You may have heard about the #HerosJourney. It's when someone goes on a quest to change their life. Along the way, they go through ups and downs, but come back at the end to share their story. This post is about the journey of the hero or heroine and the steps needed to create the change you want.
No one typically wakes up in the morning and decides they want to change. People are often afraid of change and the unknown they may have to face. So when we finally state that we want to go on this journey, it's because we recognize that something in our life is not satisfactory, that we want more, and that we are willing to do what it takes to make our dream a reality.
But that realization alone is not enough. What we find in Step 1, the Preparation phase of change, is that there is pain. The pain is often the result of past life circumstances that have shaped our beliefs. We may find that the downloads we took on from our parents and society are not aligned with our personal values. The friction in our mind fuels us to do something different.
We may recognize the need for change because we feel stressed, overwhelmed, or unfulfilled. We may know that we want something different, although we may not always know what that looks like. This is when we have to make a decision about whether we are better off with the status quo - sticking to what we know - or whether we are willing to go down an unmarked path.
Sometimes, even when we recognize how unhappy we are with our current life circumstances, we have anchors that hold us back from taking the leap. We may not trust ourselves to successfully complete the journey. We may have beliefs that tell us we don't deserve something better. It's important to recognize these #limitingbeliefs and work on changing them rather than giving up.
Once you've figured out how to break free of the shackles, you are ready for Step 2, connecting to yourself. This is the first part of your journey toward a meaningful life. To get you started, you will typically find a mentor or helper. This is someone who shows you the path you are searching for. As the saying goes, "when the student is ready, the teacher will appear." And while there may be a number of options in front of you, it is always recommended for you to select a mentor who has walked a similar path to the one you have. You want someone you can relate to and who has overcome similar challenges to the ones you are facing. Your mentor can help you connect to your intuitive self and be a guide for you.
By now, you've overcome limiting beliefs, have made a decision to change, and have found someone to guide you. But without #courage, you may not take the journey. This is essential because along the road you may be tested. You have to stay focused on your reason for embarking on the journey no matter what you come across. You have to be willing to face your demons and forge ahead. You have to be so driven by your vision for a better life, that you are willing to take risks and try new things. In essence, you have to keep the faith.
While the mentor is there to guide you, there may be other people on your path that prevent you from moving forward. They may induce doubt inside of you. You have to be resilient. These threshold guardians represent your inner demons. By healing your own self-doubts and creating a support network around you, you can overcome these obstacles. Consider how you've managed your fears in the past and how you can continue to do so on this new path.
You may also encounter people who seem to have your best interest at heart but turn out to be mal-intentioned. They may try to temp you off your path by offering you promises that sound appealing, but aren't aligned with your values. Have you ever struggled financially and wanted to create financial security? Maybe you had an idea of what you can do to be more profitable and along the way someone offered you a position that paid well. You might be tempted to take that position, but your gut tells you that it's not right for you. Yes, it will resolve you financial burden but it will create an emotional burden in its place. Maybe you've been on your journey for a while and you're ready to give up. You're at a low point when this person comes along and offers you some stability. Do you take it or persist on your path?
You are a warrior. You move with force and intention toward your target, but to stay strong, you must be balanced. Take the time to nurture yourself, reflect on how you are doing, and connect to your feelings. Heal yourself so you can fight the shadow within you and the shadow of the #archetypes on your path.
When you have gathered the knowledge you need to be successful on your expedition, you are ready for the implementation phase. Come back next week for Steps 3 and 4 of the journey toward a meaningful life.