I was walking my dog around the neighborhood a few weeks ago, and we passed a local playground which looked fairly empty. Suddenly my eye was caught by movement and I saw a little girl, maybe five or six, jumping and running around. On a bench nearby, her mother sat watching her with a baby nestled in her lap.
Just as I was about to continue on with my dog, the little girl started climbing up the stairs of a wooden jungle gym that had large cut out peep holes and a slide at the very top. She made her way over to the slide, sat down and then paused to look towards the bottom. It looked like she was getting herself ready for the journey ahead.
I found myself holding my breath as I watched her because she looked so tiny and the slide itself was not on the small side. All of a sudden, she flipped over onto her stomach and pushed off sliding to the bottom feet first. When she landed she ran excitedly over to her mother and then dashed off towards the swings. As I headed back home, the image of her coming down the slide made me smile and I admired her for doing it her way.
This experience made me think about all the times we do things the way we think we should, instead of trusting ourselves to do the things the way we want to. Over the years, I have listened to many patients and clients who want to take a leap of faith and do things differently. They often see-saw between staying where they are, comfortable yet bored, or honoring the call within. The good news is that when they take the time to honor what they want, and receive support, they become very clear on what steps they need to take next.
Here are a few questions to consider when you are feeling the need to do it your way.
What have you been drawn to?
Think of all the different activities, classes and sports you have participated in throughout your life. What about them sparked your interest?
Who has an impact on you?
Is there a teacher, coach, therapist, business leader or inspirational figure that you admire? How come? What qualities do they have that appeal to you?
What is calling out to you?
Is there a book to be written, a business to start or a change in your personal or professional life that is preoccupying your thoughts? How is that registering with you?
How can you cultivate your inner calling?
Consider the resources available to you now that will help you find clarity. What person, class, book, group or association can provide you with the knowledge and encouragement you need?
Sometimes when you decide to makes changes, you can feel like you are on your own. Look for the people you admire, the qualities of life that are important to you and the support you need. After all, there is more than one way to slide towards what you want.