So, I just went to Alive in Berlin and spent a weekend with 156 people all opening up, sharing themselves, striving to develop themselves and grow. I felt inspired and stretched, really seen and then sad. With a lot of other intense feelings in between. On the Sunday, after the two days of being at the conference, I said good-bye to my sister-in-law and very dear friend Siun. I had been on such a high and now I had a sinking feeling.
One of the speakers had blown a hole into my consciousness on Friday afternoon. Emily Penn spends much of her time on the ocean, raising awareness in communities all over the world about the effect of plastics in our oceans. Her keynote speech described her journey and her willingness to make a stand for a different way. She sails the seas collecting data and inspiring others to come along too, with Exploring Mindset. At that point I realised that my future does not involve becoming comfier in suburbia. The sinking feeling was me feeling stuck and unsure about HOW I was going to change my current circumstances. I own a house, I have a toddler, we own a neurotic dog. I have a fear of heights and I don’t know how to sail! Would my husband buy in to an idea of sailing away into the sunset? Lots of questions and limiting beliefs.
So instead of allowing the anxiety to overwhelm me, I wrote down my fears. This post inspiration dip even has a name- the ‘Trough of Sorrow’. But it isn’t a ‘Landslide of Sorrow’; forever going downwards. When you enter a trough you go down, you slide along the bottom, and then make your way up the other side again. There is hope! However, inertia is the fuel of misery, so I knew it was time to break my thoughts down into small actions. As my friend Rob Young aptly described last Saturday:
No matter how many great ideas you have, without action, there is no result.
Idea x Action = Result
You could have loads of ideas, 100 ideas even, but with 0 action, it = 0 result,
100 x 0 = 0
I realised that the clearer I became about my blockages, the easier it would be to dispel or overcome them. So, I wrote them down and made a plan. It is vital to plan for change. It enables you to create a structure, foundation and support from which to make change. Even before Berlin I had anticipated that I would want to stretch myself physically when I returned, as that is just what had happened last year, when I made a confession. So I had arranged to go climbing with an experienced climber friend. I came out of the Trough of Sorrow very quickly after I had taken the action! I was so ready to get into that harness and shimmy up those walls. I hardly felt any fear, I could see beyond the immediate anticipation because I was clear about my reason for getting past it. I had never been climbing before yet I knew it was part of my plan to:
‘gather skills and grow my physical confidence, to enable me to thrive with an active lifestyle, ie. whilst sailing!’
Facing the fear was less scary than missing out on the opportunity of getting closer to my dream. Ahhhh! Exciting and terrifying, but wow- I feel ALIVE.
So here is me climbing for the first time:
The more time I spend breaking through the limiting beliefs and acknowledging the fears I have, the clearer the picture becomes of how I will be able to create my way of living. No way is the right way. No other person has got it right. But following your gut and exploring your mindset can only enable you to grow.
What is next? Now it’s your turn.
Most of us have fantastic ideas when we are on holiday, of new places we could live, new ventures or careers we could embark upon. These feelings can create a huge sense of excitement and anticipation at first, and then can quickly turn into disappointment and dissatisfaction.
Ride the Trough of Sorrow. Write down your thoughts.
What do I feel inspired by?______________________
What has touched my heart?______________________
What do I want to change?______________________
What is in my way of achieving this?______________________
What are my fears about taking action?______________________
What is my next step?______________________
How can I make sure I get this done?______________________
When shall I do it?______________________
“Identify your fears, they will not go away, dance with them.” Rob Young
Plan to take action, assign some time and resources and most importantly the support and accountability of others. Then TAKE ACTION. Even just a tiny bit of action will produce more than 0 result-
Idea x Action = Result
1 x 1 = 1 (A RESULT-WOOOOOOO!!)
Create more of what you already love, don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.
Let go of that which is no longer working well for you.
Make room for the new and take action for change.
Please share any thoughts or fears or breakthroughs below in the comments.