Have you ever taken the time to listen to yourself, realise that the life you are living is not the one you want to live, make a decision to change, and then fall back into the old patterns you were trying to break?
Have you ever felt a calling to make a radical change, like a career change, moving countries or taking up a new hobby, only to make excuses and end up stuck in the life you were trying to escape?
When we want to make a change in our lives, we tend to ask our friends and family for advice. As a child we rely on others for guidance in order to survive, and so we learn the behaviour of asking others what to do. We look outside of ourselves for answers, when the truth of the matter is that we hold all of the answers within.
Everyone around us is living their own story, a story where you fit in the way they see fit. If you want to live the life you want, it's imperative to listen to yourself, without people pleasing and seeking approval from others, otherwise you will continue living someone else's story.
This habit is so well ingrained in us that it can be difficult to break. It's taken me years of practice to listen to myself, and I've reaped the rewards in doing so. I still discuss my problems with others but I do so with a different purpose. Having a sounding board is very different to seeking answers from others. At times it's easy to get caught in the rat race and disconnect from ourselves, so It's important to have a support network of like minded people that can listen and understand, without projecting themselves on to you. I have learnt who I can talk to about certain things, as well as who I cannot. My life coach is the ultimate guide when I get lost - she helps me find my way, reconnect with my inner guidance and find the answer within.
If you are still struggling to listen to yourself, there are two practices that may help you develop the ability to reconnect with your inner guidance;
1. Accept that no matter what advice you receive from others, the final decision you make is ALWAYS your own.
Being accountable for your choices regardless of who helped you come to your decision is a great practice to improve your self-confidence and take credit for when things go 'right', and an even better practice to take responsibilty and blame more effectively when things go 'wrong'.
2. Accept that whether the outcome is good or bad, it is always the 'right' decision.
I placed 'right' and 'wrong' in inverted commas because there is no such thing as right or wrong. When you begin a concious awakening and start a journey of self-development, every choice you make is taking you closer to your true-self, whether it feels like it or not. The 'wrong' outcome is always the 'right' outcome because there was a lesson to learn. In the context of this article, that lesson could be to have listened to yourself. Accepting this principle will encourage you to discover the lesson when things aren't going in the 'right' direction and accelerate your growth.
When was the last time you made a decision without asking a friend or family member for advice? I have a challenge for you. Next time you have a big decision to make, sit with it by yourself. Do not ask everyone around you for advice. Do not allow the voices of others to fill your mind with confusion and doubt. Listen to yourself. Ask yourself how the decision makes you feel. Regardless of risk, regardless of who you may upset, what feels like the 'right' thing to do? If you have the courage to follow your heart you will be rewarded. The answers are always within.