I found this wonderful quote from Joseph Campbell, who worked in the field of myth and religion and gave us the The Hero with A Thousand Faces and the Hero’s Journey. He said “We must be willing to let go of the life we’ve planned so that we can have the life that is waiting for us.” This seems even more relevant than ever in our Covid-19 world.
During the last month or so, I’ve been working remotely with clients from all walks of life. There’s a clear theme emerging. They don’t want to go back to their old lives and aren’t sure how to kick-off their new ones.
My sense is we must be willing to let go of planning our new lives using the same methods we used to plan our old lives.
I was talking with a client this morning about the career counselling we had at school. And being encouraged to pick something and stick to it. To ensure that our further education took us on the path of that choice. A single track if you like. And my own feeling at the time of being under pressure to choose when I really didn’t know, and not feeling like I was being given the time to just wait and see, and try a few different things.
Time is something many of us have a lot of right now. Perhaps you are furloughed, or like me, self-employed with a diminishing pipeline of work. Or perhaps you are working 24/7 on the front line or within infrastructure, and you are keeping the nation going. Thank you. I am sure at the end of all of this, you too will be re-evaluating your lives.
I remember a colleague, a young woman, from many years ago, who had her whole life mapped out in terms of achievements. By the age of 30 she wanted to be married and have two Personal Investment Plans up and running (if I remember correctly). It was like she had her own Gantt chart with a critical path laid out.
And what we know today about neuroscience is that if you have that single focus, you are unlikely to even see the many opportunities that are offered along the way to deviate, make different choices, try something new.
Our world is changing rapidly. Covid-19 is forcing that change. And I am having lots of conversations with people who are relieved that the change is happening.
Another great mind, Albert Einstein, said: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” If we want our lives differently, then surely we have to go about planning them (or not at all) in an entirely different way.
What about watching, listening, sensing, dreaming? Giving a voice to your heart’s deepest desires, and seeing where that takes you? What about allowing new thoughts and ways of living to emerge rather than trying to shoe-horn something into the old ways?
We are all experiencing the need to connect and how fundamental it is to our humanity. Myself, along with other coaches, work using intuition and connection rather than any specific model or goal-oriented approach (I can do that too though…). Come and connect with me and let’s talk about what might be emerging for you and what you might need to let go of in order for those ideas to bear fruit.