How do you leave a life of unconsciousness and feel your way through life? You have to learn how to recognize that small voice in your heart which means that you have to quiet the constant chatter in your head. Feeling your way through your life takes an effort to stop reacting and digging deep inside to feel for the right answers.
I have lived from my heart for a while now, it is very different from what I thought living was. One morning recently when I assisted the turtle in the picture below, it all made sense.
What started as an ordinary walk with the dog turned into a miracle morning. The dog was happily pulling me down the street when we came upon two bikes parked in the middle of the sidewalk.
A woman wearing a wide-brimmed sun hat was sitting on her bike waiting while her husband ran across the street with a large soft-shell turtle in his hands. He turned a full circle and put the turtle down, yelling that it kept trying to cross back and he wanted to confuse it hoping it would stay.
We chatted briefly, they pedaled around the corner and the dog and I resumed our walk. But my heart told me to turn around, so I did and I saw that the turtle was walking back toward the four lane street; I knew its internal radar was guiding it toward a retention pond on the other side.
First, I tried to pick her up, but her 40-something dead weight body, flailing clawed feet and hissing made it clear that my help wasn’t wanted. So, I decided to walk along side of her to shield her from oncoming traffic.
A gentleman also on his morning walk joined me. It took some time, but we were able to get her safely across the street. About ten minutes later she reached the grass, as soon as she felt it beneath her feet she raced, then slid into the retention pond. hooray!!
Every person on this planet has the same instincts as that soft-shelled turtle does, but we don’t listen or trust them. Most of us are so conditioned that we have no idea how to follow our feelings. We have been made to believe that the only way we can be happy—and maybe the only way we can survive is by just“going along,”, “giving in,” or by “accepting” life “as it is” even when we know in our hearts that we aren’t happy.
If we followed our impulses and allowed life to flow, we would stop making a living and make a life. Instead, we allow our fears and beliefs to stop us and we stay entrenched in a vicious cycle of living and working to pay bills. Can you imagine being like that turtle without fear? No matter what the dangers were, the drive to be in her natural environment outweighed the hazard of crossing the street.
When you know you’re ready to choose the way you live your life, remember you’re the only one who knows how you feel and what is right in your heart for you.
I lived unaware for a long time before I woke up. When I realized that I no longer wanted to be an employee number, a cubicle location or a paycheck, it was clear that I wanted to make a life because making a living to pay bills just didn’t feel good anymore. I didn’t have any idea how or what I was going to do, but I knew that I wanted to be happy and feel authentic. I went through a myriad of work situations during the first four years of my transformation but that’s okay because creating an intentional life takes time and the ability to stay focused on opening your heart to a whole new way of living.
When or how do you spread your wings and soar? How do you start following your feelings and create your life? You can begin by asking yourself questions that will make you have to dig for an answer: (make a worksheet with these questions and your answers so you can keep it front of you when you feel the urge to fall back into your old way of living).
- What about me? Who am I really? What do I want?
- What do I do that I love so much that I would do it for free?
- If I choose the way I want to live my life, what does that look like?
- How can I make my current job work for me until I figure out what I want to do?
- How can I start changing who I am inside to help me see things differently?
- If I were going to choose to live from my heart what steps should I take?
- What am I afraid of? How can I get past the fear?
- Am I loving and respectful to myself?
Not sure how to distill the fear and worry of leaving your comfort zone? Most people have a misleading fear that the money they’re used to earning won’t be there. Yes, we have to eat and bills to pay, but in order to make a big change, you have to change the way you think and your priorities so you come first rather than let your job and paycheck run your life. I’ve listed some ways that I used to help me change the direction of my life:
Resist your fear, fear will never lead you to a positive end. Go for your faith and what you believe. TD Jakes
- Find something about your current job that makes you feel good. No matter how small, look for ways to increase positive feelings that you can expand on. The better you feel about yourself and your contributions, the more great ideas will flow to help you go in the direction of your dreams. I made an effort at my last job to see the positive aspects of the work I was doing because it was important to allow my creativity, peace and happiness be a priority.
- Next, work on changing yourself from the inside out starting with the way you think, when you do the world around you will change. This will take effort on your part, but if you are ready, it won’t be difficult to find the resources to help you accomplish this.
- When you operate from your heart or your gut instincts and begin to take responsibility for your choices, things will shift for you. All through the last job I had, I spent time reading books that helped me shift my beliefs. I watched videos focused on the subjects I was interested in learning more about; I also went to workshops once a week. During the classes I would discuss my ideas about doing what I loved and got great feedback that helped me become more creative.
- Changing the way I thought was the key to the way I moved away from being an employee to successfully following my heart. No matter what stage of life you’re in, everyone should be happy and doing something that they love and are passionate about.
Always do what you are afraid to do. Ralph Waldo Emerson
Transforming the direction of your life takes determination, desire and courage. Life is short; we don’t know when our time on earth will come to an end, so it is time to leave your comfort zone and take a chance. Take it from someone who is all about taking risks; it is well worth the gamble to take that first step. I can confidently say that I have never been happier.