Ever find yourself stuck? Frozen like a deer in the headlights of your own oncoming life approaching at full speed? Damned if you do and damned if you don’t? Fortunately, you’re in good company. All of us humans alive today in this most interesting of times occasionally finds ourselves in the proverbial double bind. That highly energized state of stuckness that feels like any decision we can see available to us is the wrong one and staying where we are is worse or impossible. Bam! Double bind. That experience of being backed into a corner by life, no way out that you can see and the sand draining away in the hourglass while you panic and grasp as straws.
Not fun, and yet, it could be an unlooked for gift you’ll thank your lucky stars or guardian angels for later. Being trapped in a corner by life events indicates to us that we are at the boundaries of our abilities to conceptualize and organize sensory input. We found our blind spot. The good news is that we’re now ripe for a major personal breakthrough. The bad news is that we’ve found the edge of our comfort zone. Most likely by finding it waaayyyyy back there in the rear-view mirror. Sudden and complete exposure of who we are in our natural, unrehearsed and authentic state.
Most of us are frankly terrified by being caught with our character armor (ahem) down, in a corner with no carefully rehearsed excuses about why we don’t look like we know exactly what we’re doing.
My advice? Smile and pay attention. There are two extremely good reasons why this is the best possible place for you in all the fabric of reality right now.
1. You can’t possibly lose. Encountering your blind spots this way means that anything you do will effectively expand (evolve) your consciousness. You will get bigger and badder.
2. The real you. You have found your authentic self which is also your most powerful, sexiest and most satisfying you. Character armor (as the chronic tension we carry in our bodies is called in somatics) is fragile, restricts contact with the breath and core musculature, compromises the immune system and fills the body with toxic stress hormones shortening life span.
There, now doesn’t it feel better to know that no matter what you do you’ll win? You’ll learn, grow and break out of the stagnant limitations in your life you’ve been griping about at the coffee shop for so long. My advice here is if you’re feeling exposed to the winds of change, lean into the wind. It’s like ripping off a band aid or jumping into a cold pool, just do it fast and get it over with. I had a chilly moment in Liguria recently working myself up to diving into the Mediterranean on a cold, cloudy day. The initial shock was disorienting but the water was delicious beyond words and as soon as I went all the way in the sun came out and the day quickly became a perfect and warm Italian Riviera fairytale with me in the middle. I looked around me at one point and the people that didn’t dive in hadn’t even noticed they were in the middle of a fairly tale. It was life changing for me and it went right by them without even a blink.
Something else to consider is that now that you’ve broken through that membrane of your comfort zone and courageously grown bigger and badder it’s important to use that expanded you, get to know it and make it your own. More on this later when we discuss Evolution and Involution. For myself, I no longer need to put all that energy into avoiding the shock of cold water in my life, limiting myself to those few moments when all the perfect variables of life line up perfectly. Metaphorical or otherwise, I’m now available to a vastly wider breadth of experiences in life that make me happy. Isn’t that the point?
In that moment of diving in we find the thing we left behind is the old self, the limited self. The self that enters that cold water is naked, unprotected, available to the raw, visceral experience of reality. It is also powerful. Humans are the only animals in all the world to intentionally self limit. The chronic tension we carry around in our posture and faces as character armor is mental in origin and we are the only animals that do this. One of my favorite moments in any energy session is when the client goes so deep into their consciousness that they forget to be small and actually take one full, beautiful, powerful, effortless, brilliant breath. That’s usually enough to scare them back into their hole, but they have taken one and they can’t go back. They now know what that’s like and can do it again if they so choose.
This unlimited, raw self is where the juice of life is waiting for us. There is where everything is possible and limitations are only in our heads so the less we think and the more we simply BE, the fewer limitations are brought into the situation. Brains are important tools for discernment and coordination of sensory input, but they’re notably bad at experiencing emotional or high-level conceptual experiences.
My suggestion here is to simply be present with the experience. If you’re scared, be scared and see what’s in there. Chances are it’ll quickly turn to something else, like a powerful, fearless euphoria as you transcend your previous comfort zone. If you’re crazy, be crazy, maybe there some brilliant wisdom in there for you. Let go of the sudden desire to reclaim the comfort zone and hang out in that darkness, that shock and let the experience begin to take it’s own form. Regardless of the nature of your experience, it’ll be the most powerful, authentic, rewarding and healthy experience you can have. It also helps to read "Dont Believe Everything You Think", it will help you take it all less seriously.
From the perspective of others, you’ll look like a hero, boldly facing the edges of your comfort zone and showing up regardless. It shows people that they can trust you to show up, to be you. It also gives them the courage and permission to be themselves. Quite quickly this snowballs and the entire room lights up and everyone nearby suddenly becomes human, present, available, authentic and beautiful.
Next time you find yourself squarely in the path of the runaway train of your own life with no where to turn, smile. It’s going to be good.