Why do we get in our own way? Most of my self-imposed road blocks have been because I was scared of the unknown or just didn’t feel good enough. And as a result I spent a lot of years sitting and longing for the goals and aspirations that sat on the other side of those road blocks. Even now, when I am finally at a place of genuine self-love and have overcome so much, I still find myself doubting. What will people think, what if I fail, what if I’m terrible… And on and on. I’m sure you know what I mean.
One of the hardest things about starting down a new path is uncertainty. And that’s likely what has stopped each of us at some point from forging ahead. It’s okay to be afraid. It’s okay to be nervous. But allowing those feelings to create road blocks is a choice. A very costly choice. When I was in the hospital after my third brain surgery I asked my husband to bring me my journal. I don’t remember writing it but at the top of a new page I wrote “be comfortable with uncertainty”. I discovered it when I was home recovering, and remind myself of the heavily-medicated narcotic-induced advice whenever doubts creep in. Some days I repeat it a hundred times. Others none. This morning it was my affirmation on my yoga mat.
We face challenges. We make choices. I could have easily let my doctor’s warnings and the physical challenges that came after my brain surgeries be a road block. Instead I accepted the challenges with gratitude and let that be a catapult. And it was terrifying. It still is. But I’m finally finding some comfort in the uncertainty. The uncertainty of recovery, the uncertainty of life, the uncertainty of my new path.
What is on the other side of your road block? Why is the road block there? Do yourself a favor and move it. Get out of your own way. Start small. You’ll be amazed how far you’ll go. And along the way, I promise you’ll meet people who will guide you, people who started exactly where you did. You will also encounter people who have forgotten what that’s like and who will try to discourage you, and that sucks. But that’s a reflection of them, not you. Be grateful for the lesson.
My family spent a few days at the ocean earlier this week. And it was amazing. The ocean brings me a kind of peace and contentment that I don’t feel anywhere but there. Looking out over its endless beauty and feeling its massive strength provides so much perspective. It reminds me that even in stillness, there is movement and life. And just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it isn’t there. That was one of the most important lessons of my recovery. Making a change doesn’t have to be a giant leap. Any movement forward is movement, no matter how small. I can look back now and see how far I’ve come, how far each small step forward took me. But day to day, that was really hard to see.
Nothing is permanent. We have one life. And it’s very short. We can’t let road blocks get in the way of living our best life. I’m grateful to finally understand and appreciate what that means. That doesn’t make it easy, but it’s encouraging me to actually enjoy the journey, uncertainty and all.