There is a lot of adult life which requires your fluidity. Your survival depends on your ability to arrive at the next stage of your life, deal with whatever the hell is going on and continue to forge a path ahead. Much like water, naturally flowing to the path of least resistance.
It is unstoppable, though we often feel stopped in our tracks when things go wrong. We keep the plates spinning, frozen still as eyes flit around the room secretly seeking salvation. Still going, but not moving.
Nothing really stops, life rolls on.
We roll through days into months, in familiar patterns of day-to-day life, sometimes barely aware of the bigger picture of our lives. Much like that calm stream, we seek the easiest path.
It is when the months roll into years and you realise the world around you has changed, whilst you’ve been living the day to day. You lose sight of your dreams, you disconnect with who you have become during this process and you become disheartened, frustrated.
Do you remember the days when you had a plan? A dream? A goal? Hope?
Are you living on the path of least resistance?
Life has a way of taking over, doesn’t it? Our roles and responsibilities distract us, we begin the game of cat and mouse with money at a young age and before we realise where it’s taken us, we are stuck somewhere between our need to earn a living the ever-rising cost of living. Sometimes winning, sometimes losing, but always playing.
Instead of passion, inspiration, motivation or enthusiasm we pursue the path which will fulfil our needs with the most ease, and often leave ourselves so depleted that by then end of our working week we just want to numb out. It begins to affect our decision making and we stop taking risks, even the ones we know could pay off, because we just don’t have the energy or the headspace to think it through.
Sometimes when you find yourself wondering and reminiscing about the dreams you once had it can be worth asking yourself why you’re not there.
Are you actively pursuing what you want to do or who you want to be?
If not, can you be really honest with yourself about why?
When it comes to resistance in our lives, we are often the cause, though it can take a whole deal of soul-searching to start unpacking the bags and understand how and why.
Are you secretly worried about what a different way of life would mean for you and those you love? Do you never have enough time/energy/resources/*fillblank*?
Life change isn’t easy and certainly deciding to make changes which come organically from within you and that aren’t easily visible to others can leave the people around us feeling very confused.
How often do you think about a thing before actually doing it? I mean, by the time you’ve psyched yourself up to take action it can be months of thinking, months of working out potential outcomes and calculating risks based on what we already know — or what we think we know — so by the time we actually do the thing, it appears out of nowhere to everyone else and leaves them reeling and questioning our faculties.
Acting against the resistance is the most difficult part of the puzzle — but it’s often the piece nearest to the richest rewards. It is that final struggle, like all creatures leaving their cocoons, which makes them what they are. You have to fight against the self-doubt and tune out the naysayers, try to surround yourself and fill your mind with positive people achieving wonderful things, for they are all around you.
Seek out the path which is going to lead you to becoming the person you want to be, not focusing on the material but your experience of life as it happens. Take the first step and commit to changing one small thing about your day tomorrow; help someone else, research that course, email that company, book the taster session. Because when you’ve started, and you realise that the momentum is truly behind you, and coming from within you, you won’t need the path of least resistance anyway.
True life change doesn’t happen overnight. I know it goes against the grain of modern living when almost everything can be available so quickly, but the best things take time to grow. And as they do, they develop and evolve.
If you start out with a dream and wait until you have all the answers to act, no one would ever do anything. It is that risk, the chance, that fights the resistance to make things happen.
Spend a little time with yourself and try to remember what it was that once inspired you. Dare to reimagine your future in ways that scare you a little.
Take the first step — believe you deserve to live your best life — and see what happens.