Are you stuck facing your wall?
Imagine a major barrier blocks you in your life. It interrupts your growth as a man or woman. Let’s call it a wall. You know you don’t want to be where you are, but you feel stuck. You have tried to break through, but the wall is still in front of you. Such a scene plays out many times in the normal flow of life.
Some examples are in order:
- You know you are underpaid and bored in your secure job, but you balk at the thought of getting back into the job market. So you stay put; or…
- You have been dating someone for 3 years, but can’t commit; or…
- You are miserable and lonely in a relationship that ended years ago, but he doesn’t leave, and you can’t seem to make the move yourself.
The form is standard; fill in the blanks for your own life. You know you can’t go on with________, but you won’t or can’t________, so you are stuck facing your wall.
Now think back to various times when you did overcome seemingly impossible obstacles in your life. Those were the times you broke through the wall and took your future into your own hands.
The scary part was you could never be certain what was on the other side of the wall. All you knew for sure was you did not like where you were. Personal, professional and spiritual growth has always been like this.
Following the examples started above,
- You know you could leave your job, if you could just be sure of quickly finding a better job.
- You could commit to marriage, if you could be sure everything would work out.
- You could leave that dead relationship, if only you were confident that both of you would be OK.
Now imagine you have finally found a weak spot in the wall. You make a hole and you break through. You find the new and the good on the other side. However, besides the positive changes, new challenges appear and old friends disappear. You are afraid and your anxiety makes you want to retreat. You try to get back through the hole, but discover you can’t.
Following the examples,
- The secure job is gone.
- The one you couldn’t commit to has married another; or
- The old predictable partner is wallowing in terminal bitterness.
When you think back to major changes you made in the past, you will realize going back was never possible. When you have a major breakthrough, you emerge from the other side as a more complex being. You have more knowledge and wisdom and a different perspective on life. It’scalled personal growth. Metaphorically, you are too big to get back through the hole.
You can do some of the old things, but it is never the same. The recovered alcoholic can drink again, but with his new insights, he can never be a happy drunk again. The man or woman who has come face to face with God cannot return successfully to atheism.
We all want change.
Contrary to popular belief, we all want change. We all want to grow. We are hard-wired to seek happiness, bond with others, reproduce and make our lives better. The inevitability of change comes with the territory of life.
We face the walls in life because we want change, but …
…there are no guarantees.
Change is unpredictable. Things never seem to unfold the way we wanted them to or the way we thought they would. It is the unknown that we fear, not change itself, but …
…you cannot go back.
You cannot undo an insight or a new learning. You have grown. You cannot go back to an earlier state of being. Yes, you can do some of the old things, but nothing is the same. Change is irreversible.
Life is full of transitions from one state of being to the next in our mental, emotional and spiritual development. So, if change is inevitable, unpredictable and irreversible, why not just welcome it?