Existing and living are not synonymous, even though Roget’s Thesaurus may say so. Existing is a condition where we breathe, take up space, and watch life pass us by. Living, really living, is a choice, an intention. Being fully alive and present is a noble pursuit in a world filled with a sea of people and endless mind-numbing distractions. It’s also a feeling of being in a wide open space with potential and possibilities down every pathway. It’s joy and peace and hope and love. Why would anyone not desire to be fully alive? Here are the top excuses I hear as a coach.
1. Fear. Fear is a strong emotion, one of the 2 strongest, in fact. It’s right up there with anger and can is experienced in every sphere of our body, mind, and soul. Fear can paralyze or propel. Fear wins when we allow ourselves to be boxed in and wrapped in bubble wrap so we never feel pain. Fear tells us that we might as well not try, because nothing will ever change. How has fear kept you from fully living?
2. Shame. You may have heard the difference between guilt and shame, but it bears repeating. Guilt tells me that I’ve done something outside of my values, or that I have acted badly. Shame shouts at me that I am bad. I am my behavior, my addiction, my mistakes, my flaws, my weaknesses. Shame tells us we don’t deserve to be fully alive. How has shame lied to you?
3. Safety. Change rocks the boat. We are familiar even friendly with life as it is. We have identified with our sicknesses and mental health issues. We don’t trust, and certainly will not be vulnerable with our story. We have an innate desire to feel secure. However, deep down under that weighted blanket of false security lies an adventurous spirit dying to get out and explore and take risks. I was recently reintroduced to my value of adventure through a values exercise in a coaching session. When it was time to go to a movie, or go ANYWHERE, I chose to stay home. It was safer. I felt secure. It was known and familiar. When I started to explore my value of adventure, I started living again. I started my coaching and Master’s education and founded a non-profit, and put myself in social situations that were uncomfortable. I started leading worship again, and teaching, and putting myself out there with what I desire to offer people. What has your desire for safety robbed you of in your life?
What one of these three excuses for not fully living resonates most with you?
I would love to work with you on coming ALIVE in 2019. I am offering a self-paced 6-week online program that will dive into your life relationally, spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and financially. You can register at http://www.graceplacecoaching.com at the “Schedule an Appointment” tab. Let’s choose to come alive this year and for years to come!
Don’t just exist. LIVE!