“Don’t spend time chasing a right answer or a right path, but instead spend time defining how you are going to approach whatever path you choose.”
Laura R. Walker
I’ve never been a huge supporter of “finding your purpose”. I think mainly because when I first started to hear about this term I was going through a moment in my life where I was questioning what I wanted to do and interestingly enough, up to that point I thought I had been pursuing my purpose.
A couple months ago I had a moment of clarity during a mentorship I was taking. We were working on identifying limiting beliefs and emotions that were stored in our bodies. In one of the activities my mentor asked to notice when I felt physically contracted. After doing this we needed to pay attention to the type of thoughts we were thinking about when the contraction was felt in the body. After doing this and a few more activities along with meditations I was able to recognize that insecurity was the feeling that kept coming up for me. So, then she asked to notice the exact thoughts I was telling myself when I felt that specific emotion. So I noticed those thoughts and a lot of them were something like: “I could be doing something much more impactful”, “I know I could be doing something better”. So, then she asked, the million dollar question: “how are those thoughts and emotions making you act?”
I literately felt the light bulb turning on inside my head. I responded: “I don’t act because it makes me feel overwhelmed and confused.” And because I feel like this I end up getting distracted and busy because my brain is literately protecting itself from that feeling of survival so it looks for something familiar and comforting that can create the “fix”. Most of us are familiar with those inefficient solutions: our phones, social media and many more that tend to become unhealthy addictions because they are providing that sense of “safety” to our brain. The worst part about this is that when we go on social media most of the content that we see is going to serve as evidence that everyone else knows what they want and what their purpose is but us.
So, after the mentorship and going through a big shift in my career in the past year I have been able to truly reflect on this and I came to realize that in all those moments that I felt I was not in the “right path” I was only seeing my journey from one single sided perspective and it was tied to my unrealistic expectations and the idealization of what I had heard others talked about what fulfilling their purpose felt or looked like.
Because, today I’m working on putting together lessons to guide others to work on practices, activities and mindsets to support them to expand and grow at a personal and spiritual level. And, if it wasn’t for my previous journey and job, the company I created and that asked so much of me that forced me to implement these same practices I’m teaching today I wouldn’t be here, in a place and doing a job that makes me excited and curious to keep exploring and creating.
So, looking back I can see how “on purpose” I was during all those moments I questioned it. My previous journey started the same way I’m starting this one. I was excited and curious, and for the most part those feelings make us feel like we are in the right path. However, as with any other journey, it’s not always going to be linear, there are going to be ups and downs but the most important part of it all is our approach, our mindset about it, our trust in the journey. When we start feeling that voice that says “you are ready to move to the next chapter” because we feel as though our life is just pulling us back and all we feel is contraction remember this theory:
“The farther you pull the rubber bands of a slingshot and they are stretched, the more potential energy is stored. When the rubber bands are released, the potential energy that has been stored up is converted into kinetic energy, which causes motion.”
When we get stock in a place where we feel we are not in the right path it makes us feel overwhelmed and confused, there is literally not a clear path for our energy to flow, our energy is matching our thoughts, it’s scattered and it goes to multiple places, it makes our brain cling to habits and tendencies that only make us feel more confused and lacking energy because the energy is literally being spent in going from here to there instead of being used in one single place. However, when we approach these moments with a feeling of trust, our energy is aligned and focused on one direction and it is from that direction that slowly but surely it will bring new experiences that allow us to feel that excitement again and a new chapter begins.
And the thing is, our purpose is always changing, it is not static, like everything else in the universe it transforms and it flows. When I talk about new chapters I’m approaching my life and my purpose as if I was reading a book, and there will be some of those chapters that resonate more with my soul than others but without one chapter the next one wouldn’t be possible.
So, if you have felt like you don’t know what your purpose or right path is, what if you fully embrace your current path and trust that everything you have done and the lessons you have gathered until now are a necessary chapter of your journey?
© Nat Otalora 2022. All rights reserved.
The more I do and create the more I want to share with others.
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