New year. New resolutions you committed to that you may or may not be keeping now that it’s March; that may have gone by the wayside by Valentine’s Day, followed by the inevitable guilt and brow-beating your Inner Critic gives you for not sticking to “the plan.”
I gave up making resolutions years ago when I realized I was setting myself up for failure and assigning arbitrary deadlines to meet them. More often than not, they were goals I hadn’t truly thought out and committed to, but were ones I felt pressured to take on because of a host of outside influences, feel good mantras and falling prey to the all-too-common habit of making changes simply because it was the end of one year and the beginning of another. Perfect time to make them, right?
Maybe yes. Maybe no.
It depends on whose goals you’re carrying into that new year with you. It depends on your “Big Why?” and if you’ve really taken ownership of it. It depends on whether you’re making changes for yourself or for someone else.
Midlife woman, you can’t own someone else’s journey; someone else’s dreams.
You can hold them, acknowledge them, but if they’re not deeply, truly your dreams they’re all sizzle, no steak. They may stick to you like gum to the bottom of your shoe, but they’re not going to find their way into your soul.
Why not you ask?
Your soul knows what it wants.
Your soul knows what you want.
It whispers to you in those unguarded moments; it rises up from the deep slumber of a dream; it teases you with the briefest of glimpses into your authentic desires. It longs to kiss you awake.
If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path. Your own path you make with every step you take. That’s why it’s your path. – Joseph Campbell
Wouldn’t it be so much easier if you could have someone else tell you what you need to do? If they could offer up the solution in 500 words or less? But the plain, unadorned truth is…
You have to walk your own path.
You have to write your own story. Not hold on to the stories that were written for you, but embrace the stories that speak to the Shero you are on the verge of becoming.
It doesn’t mean you have to walk your path alone or that you can’t benefit from the wisdom of others who have taken their own journey, but the heavy lifting falls on you.
And with that first step, or right there leading up to it, you’ll find resistance. You’ll hang on by your manicured fingernails to the status quo; you’ll white knuckle your way from one day to the next trying to ignore the longing. You’ll try to shoot the messenger.
Know that this is a normal part of the process. Accept it, but don’t allow it to keep you stuck.
Take that first step.
It’s in those moments of resistance that the greatest opportunities for growth exist.
Resistance is your invitation to do the very thing you’re afraid to do. Resistance is your soul’s longing. It’s your calling.
Can you let go of what’s safe, what’s comfortable, what’s known to answer the call of your very own soul? What will you have to give up to be who you are meant to be? What stories will you have to let go of, stop leaning into in order to take the leap from living a life of expectation to a life of your soul’s calling?
My book: [R]evolution: A Soulful and Practical Guide to Creating the Life You Want is available to help you on your journey. Learn more here.