On feeling 'stuck'
First things first, it’s GREAT to be back to blogging after my book launch. I’m making a commitment to publish blogs more frequently, so keep an eye out! Click here to join the Inner Circle, to make sure you get everything, as and what it arrives.
Lately, I’ve been treading the line between the status quo and an unknown future.
I recently said yes to a new opportunity — at least I told myself I had said yes.
But secretly, I would always repeat the same disclaimer for comfort: “but I’m not sure how long I’ll actually be here”. The step forward that I had taken was also accompanied by a magnetic pull back.
The lack of dedication in this disclaimer made my stomach turn. Still, I preferred the nausea that came with backpedaling to the free-fall feeling that comes with unchartered territory.
This internal tug-of-war continued for nearly three months. Until one day, I spent many hours chatting with other people who had taken ‘risks’ in their lives. I didn’t realise it at first, but by the time I returned home to journal my thoughts, a simple question sprang to my mind:
“What if you fully committed to this opportunity for one year, imagine what could happen?”
The questioning continued: Imagine how much you could grow? Imagine if this is the opportunity you’ve been waiting for all along?
The irony of life is that many of us only want to live a life of adventure on our own terms. But life being life doesn’t work like that. We don’t have full control or foresight when it comes to walking our path. The gap between our current reality and our expectations gets filled with uncertainty. But it is also filled with untapped potential. Potential that goes far beyond simply getting what you want, and expands to include things you could have never even dreamed of.
Nevertheless, there is still a gap. And making the most of this gap requires commitment.
Who do you trust?
Commitment. It is an easy word to embrace when you know what the future holds. But the minute you choose to innovate, things get hazier. Suddenly the strength of your commitment is tested. And when it gets tested, it reveals who (or what) you trust. Our commitment is evidence of what we believe is important and powerful enough to protect us.
I challenged myself: If you trust God and your current process, you would be all in. You would be fully committed, even if the future isn’t exactly clear.
Clearly, my trust was still stuck in the past, holding onto unhelpful things that I had walked away from. Isn’t that ridiculous? Even though I had all the prayer, planning and divine ‘coincidences’ anyone could ask for, there was still no trust. And because of this quiet distrust, everything I did was half-hearted.
“my righteous one will live by faith.
and I take no pleasure
in the one who shrinks back” — [source]
My mouth was saying that I trusted the process, but my level of commitment was saying the opposite. Commitment isn’t just something you say. It is about how present you are in a given moment. It shows up in the effort you put in, in how diligently you do things, and whether you stay focused or let your mind wander.
Never let the familiarity of the past you have outgrown lure you with its sense of ‘comfort’. That comfort becomes stifling and that’s how you get stuck.
I am starting to see that this is the difference between genuine faith and wishful thinking (also known as ‘blind faith’).
Genuine faith rests fully on an unseen truth (in my case, this truth was affirmed through ‘prayer, planning and divine coincidences’). By contrast, blind faith is based on a weak hope.
I learned that the choice was completely mine:
a) cling to the past, forever floating in limbo or;
b) pour my energy and time into making the most of this new adventure.
The choice was mine, and the choice is yours.
Our lives are filled with so many options. We are exposed to many different things we ‘could’ do and it becomes exhausting. It is called the paradox of choice [there’s a whole TED talk about it]. Because we spend so much time keeping our options open, we never end up actually making a move. Until you fully commit (which may also require fully letting some things go) you will never receive the benefits and blessings that are within arm’s reach.
So, if you’ve got one foot in the future and your other foot in the past, you’re only holding yourself back. You’re holding back your energy, time and undivided focus. You’re holding back on your commitment.
And maybe that is why you feel stuck.