“You are now at a crossroads. This is your opportunity to make the most important decision you will ever make. Forget your past. Who are you now? Who have you decided you really are now? Don’t think about who you have been. Who are you now? Who have you decided to become? Make this decision consciously. Make it carefully. Make it powerfully.”
I’m very excited to share a guest article with you today on the topic of “crossroads” by Suzanne Zoglio, PhD, executive coach, speaker, and author of “Recharge in Minutes : The Quick-Lift Way to Less Stress, More Success, and Renewed Energy” and “Create A Life That Tickles Your Soul: Finding Peace, Passion, and Purpose.”
I hope you enjoy her article as much as I have! ♥
“At the Crossroads of a Tickled Soul”
By Suzanne Zoglio, PhD
Have you ever felt tired, worn out, or a little too old for your years…whatever your age? If so, it might have nothing to do with the number of candles on your birthday cake. Instead, it could be that you’ve just gotten a bit too settled, making your life feel a bit stale.
In physics the principle of entropy explains the natural tendency of all living things to either grow or break down. It demonstrates that there is no such thing as the status quo or staying at the same level. If you develop a muscle, it grows stronger. If you don’t use it, it doesn’t stay the same…it atrophies. If you use your brain for new experiences, you will grow new pathways called dendrites. If you don’t, your brainpower does not stay the same…it will diminish. “Use it or lose it” is more than an idle expression.
Relationships that we pay attention to expand; those that we neglect do not stay the same…they fade. Perhaps you have had a friendship that was once strong but now is gone. No blow-up; no decision to part, just a bad case of status quo.
At various times in life, we come to a fork in the road and have to choose which path we’ll take next. One is familiar, safe, and nicely paved. The other is a bit trickier. It glows with adventure, treasures, or perhaps the potential to learn and grow. But this second path is also unfamiliar, frightening, and rather bumpy. The road to the first path leads to contraction; the second path leads to expansion. Either you stay in your comfort zone and let life pass you by, or you take the risks necessary to move forward in the direction of your dreams. The choice is yours alone. So, although too much change can be stressful, too little change will literally bore you to death! To feel young and alive and in synch with your soul’s desires, try seeing your next crossroads not as a dilemma or misfortune, but as an opportunity to re-examine the direction you want to take next in your life.
A crossroads may appear due to a normal life stage (midlife awakening?), an unexpected opportunity (great job offer abroad?), or an unwelcomed wake-up call (health crisis, divorce, or loss?). So the path that leads to a fork in the road may be quite different for each of us. But the road to change is likely to be quite the same. Like most people, you’ll probably travel a few well-worn paths of denial, awareness, exploration, and doubt before reaching your desired destination.
Travelers on the path of denial entertain thoughts such as “This couldn’t be happening to me,” or “Things are not really that bad.” It’s easier to ignore signs that it’s time for a change (the queasiness in the pit of your stomach, the disquieting notions in your head, the restless sleep, and the joyless days) than to face the discomfort of change. It seems better to live with known negatives than to risk possible new negatives that might be even worse. The danger side of change’s double-edged sword shines the brightest. Fear of the unknown is so powerful at this stage that even strong, soulful desires can be suppressed and intuition totally ignored. It’s as if we are in shock—unable to see, hear, or feel what’s going on around us. On this path, we pretend and profess a lot, trying to convince ourselves of what we suspect may not be true. Denial prevents any adaptive action because we hold on for dear life to ideas like “everything is fine…really…or at least as good as it can be.”
A few years ago, I worked with a group of chemical workers who were preparing for a major conversion of all processes in their plant. In the group there were a few eager beavers who went willingly into the land of high-tech, many who went skeptically, and a few who dug their heels into the sands of resistance. As you might imagine, those stuck in denial were left behind, still mumbling their mantra of “No way—not in my lifetime” while others who learned new skills and prepared for the changes marched forward to success in the new computerized environment.
While the path of denial can provide a safe haven from too much change, it can also make you vulnerable if you stay on the path too long. Imagine that you are walking down some old railroad tracks, with a high-speed locomotive coming your way. You have two choices. You can stay right where you are and deny that the light in the distance is an oncoming freight train (and eventually get run over), or see the light for what it is, get off the tracks, and take another path…
Copyright Suzanne Zoglio, PhD. All Rights Reserved.
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Wishing you a beautiful day!!