Any Which Way

From as early as I can remember, I’ve always viewed life much like a ‘choose your own adventure book’, where we are free in every moment, to decide which fork in the road to follow. Much like Alice on her adventures through Wonderland, we are all on a curious journey to an unknown destination, with the power to change our course at any time. One day we can be sitting in a mundane, beige life, waiting for the minutes to tick by until home time. Each day dragging ourselves through groundhog day and wondering when the prison sentence we are living in will end. Being a victim of our own making, without the insight to see that the only chains that are holding us down, are the ones that we have padlocked ourselves.

Think about this for a moment. All the things in our life that are not serving us can be changed. What a powerful and sobering thought. We hold the responsibility for our own happiness. We can put an end to our own misery. Perhaps not in a day, in a month or even years, but everything can be changed and moulded. Life is dynamic and it can be as simple as making a conscious decision to follow a different path or creating the next fork in the road. We cannot necessarily predict the exact outcome of pursuing the alternative path, but what you will know for sure, it will be different than the reality you are trying to escape from. The pattern you are reliving over and over, all the while expecting a different outcome. Insanity.

We all have the power to get up and walk right out of the life we are living and straight into another reality. We can find the key that we stashed away in our ‘comfort zone’ combination vault and unlock the padlock to the chains that are keeping us imprisoned. For these chains may feel familiar and safe, but they are also tranquillising, paralysing, heavy and burdensome. By keeping these chains wrapped around us, we are perpetuating the victim mentality and crying ‘poor me’, when all along, we hold the power to release ourselves. We can unlock our own jail cell, but choose not to for fear of what is on the other side.

Therefore, I urge you to do what your heart is craving. Go on that adventure. Tell that person you are in love with them. Figure out a way to make an income from your passion. Speak the words you are to frightened to speak. Offload the possessions and limiting beliefs that no longer serve you. Go to the places in your subconscious that scare you.

For in these places we have an opportunity for greatness, growth and deep fulfilment. It may not always work out, but you can take comfort in the fact that you tried and you learned a hell of a lot along the way. Use this to your advantage and make your next pursuit even more feasible. Life is about learning and evolving and we can only do this by making mistakes. Mistakes are what make us human and humans make mistakes. Embrace your humanness, your fears and your flaws. Do what makes your heart flutter with fear and excitement at the same time.

As a final thought, here is a poem I penned when I was 15 years old and is somewhat of a mantra I still live by today. I made a promise to myself to never be this bird and when I’m paralysed by fear, to just take a leap out of my cage anyway. For who knows what lies beyond the bars of the cage, that we built for ourself.

A bird in a cage,

Stared out afar.

She knew she would never,

Get past the bars.

A bird in a cage,

With nowhere to fly,

Nowhere to live,

And nowhere to die.

She dreamed of flying,

To far away lands.

Flying over the oceans,

And dancing on the sands.

But she was imprisoned,

Her wings could not stretch.

She cried silent tears,

With a weight on her chest.

By chance the cage opened,

She was free to go now.

But she was so frightened,

And she didn’t know how.

She died in anguish,

As she gazed at the view.

Her cage was her prison,

But that’s all she knew.

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