What’s holding you back?
What’s keeping you stuck at square one?
What’s blockading your greatness?
What’s turning you in circles?
Fear of pain. That’s it.
Most obviously, we fear painful events — loss, humiliation, disconnection. But actually, what we might fear the most is awareness. What keeps us in a holding pattern is the fear of knowing more about our reality — and having to act on what we know.
Once you become aware of something — aware of the truth of the matter — you have a few choices to make: shut down or open up; deny it (and don’t change); or accept it (which calls for change).
Denial usually means we stay where we’re at — there’s not much to do when you’re in the Denial Boat, except pray that nothing rocks the Denial Boat.
Accepting a new truth usually means that we’ll be changing our expectations and behaviors in some way. We have an awareness that something is the way that it is, and as a result we might choose to be more loving, or outspoken, active or inactive, more or less committed.
Facing the facts is transformative — if we want it to be.
Awareness = change.
Change can = pain.
Which brings us back to the fear of pain that keeps us stuck. The fear is inevitable. The pain, also inevitable. This is the nature of life. Resistance to the nature of life will deaden you. Gibran puts it so beautifully:
Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding. Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.
- Khalil Gibran
How can I sum this up in a way that’s helpful and encouraging? How might I help you face the pain — from the minor and kinda thrilling discomfort of growing pains, to the seemingly unbearable agony of becoming more conscious? Just this:
It’s worth it.
The sun is waiting for you.