Boom! (*shakes head in shocking confusion*) “How did I get here?”
We’ve all been in a place where everything went well and we avoided big questions and decisions – although perhaps unconsciously – and then it’s almost like we fell into an ocean of uncertainty with no clear direction on how to get out.
Somehow a river of uncertainty in one area of life joined the other areas of life and now you’re swimming in many dilemmas that meet to make life a seeming state of uncertainty.
Or… at least that’s one way of looking at things.
It seems to be a common theme for many so-called quarter-life or mid-life crises.
However, in times like these, you each have a choice – a unique voice – for how to look at where you are.
You’ve had an experience (or will experience) a time where you are confused and your instinct is to go to that one person you always go to for guidance.
“What do I do?” you ask him or her. As I’ll get into, there’s nothing wrong with reaching out for help, but as I hope to portray with this blog, the final decision has to be yours.
Your answers are not outside of you in someone else, they are in you — trust yourself.
STOP GIVING YOUR POWER AWAY TO OTHERS AND START EMPOWERING YOUR INNER VOICE
You often hear things about having one’s own voice and being able to express it freely, but it is often either misinterpreted or misguided.
You have your own voice of which you can yell and say words, but most of the time the words you say are not conscious words, but reactions to something you see or hear outside of yourself.
How often do you actually pay attention to your inner voice?
Although it’s beneficial to seek help from others, my aim is that you embrace more self-confidence and trust yourself. Before you go asking others what to do, first listen to what you have to say about it!
THE SUBCONSCIOUS IMPRESSION
Psychologists and psychiatrists claim that many of the thoughts you have are not your thoughts – the automatic negative ones – because as you grow up, you hear things and subconsciously assume it to be true.
There’s an old adage we learn about in the Institute of Transformational Nutrition’s psychology lessons, “If you were born, you have experienced trauma.” And not only is this true, but trauma itself is misunderstood.
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear trauma?
Fighting in war, a sudden car accident or death of a loved one, cancer, any life-changing events? In addition to these, many people are regularly traumatized in many different ways.
According to the Center for Nonviolence and Social Justice, the term “trauma” encompasses a wide range of experiences or circumstances that are “emotionally painful and distressing, and that overwhelm a person’s ability to cope, leaving them powerless.”
As you can see, there are several types of trauma including physical, mental, psychological, and emotional – all of which do not have to stem from severe situations.
Of course, one could write a whole book talking about trauma and its effects, but I bring it up simply to show a correlation between some traumatic event and the unconscious concealment of one’s true voice.
WHAT YOU LEARN AS A CHILD
Psychology teaches many types of traumatic events that, if unattended, can leave the person stuck in the past while they grow up into an adult, creating the world around themselves based on this event.
When you were a child, you experienced some level of a non-confidence vote that, depending on the severity and regularity, told you to lower the volume of your voice.
It is experiences like these that conditions a child to feel uncertain or doubtful about their own self-confidence and inner voice.
We now have the science to prove how a person begins to identify unconsciously as indecisive, worrisome, or anxious – and these do not have to be a chronic diagnosis to become a personality trait.
It is an unconscious identification because as soon as someone begins to become aware of this pattern they would work on changing it, or at least I hope so, because, as we also now know with epigenetics, you are not condemned by your genes.
Once we experience an event where you’re not encouraged to step into your truth — your inner voice — you begin to condition yourself to this behavior of uncertainty. Ultimately, you create a fear to make a “mistake.”
For something to be conditioned in the brain, all it takes is an image, a symbol, or an emotion.
Every time a child experiences an event similar to one they have before, he or she fires a similar thought pattern: I’m not sure what to think. Will I be punished for this? Is dad going to be mad at this decision?
The more experiences you have that trigger those thought patterns, the more you condition the mind to believe something limiting and ultimately not true, and thus create feelings of lack, unworthiness, and more negative thoughts.
There are several studies and books now that emphasize the volume of thoughts you have every single day.
It is somewhere around 100,000 thoughts a day, and 95% of them are the same!
If you doubt this, your thought of doubt could actually be a pattern of doubting things you hear. To begin to break this pattern, I highly encourage writing down your thoughts throughout a day to see if you notice a pattern.
The more you practice this, the more you might catch patterns in your thinking.
If you think the same way about things, make the same choices, and demonstrate the same behaviors, you create the same experiences that stamp the same neurological networks into the same patterns.
All of this creates, as the author of Becoming Supernatural, Dr. Joe Dispenza says, “the familiar feeling called you.”
Throughout life, it can be easy to give your power away to other people without ever asking yourself what you think about what’s going on and what to do about it.
Whether it’s learning from a teacher, reading a book, consulting a doctor, or talking to a parent, there are many areas of life that you reach out to someone you respect and ask for their input.
When I’m feeling sick, I set up an appointment with my doctor. When I don’t know what to do with my life, I reach out to my parents.
I would like to repeat here that reaching out is not a bad thing to do, but it’s often easy to reach out for an answer and have someone make the decision for you, which gives away your power.
ASK YOURSELF THESE POWERFUL QUESTIONS
So, I challenge you to ask yourself these questions when faced with an important decision in your life…
- What do I think about this situation?
- Why do I think or feel that way?
- How can I know that my thoughts are truly mine?
One piece of advice I’ll offer you as you sit with those questions is that you don’t need to know the answers right now.
Fully enjoy the experience you’re in and be curious about what it has to tell you and what your inner voice says.
With some quiet time to think and evaluate your life objectively, you might find that the ocean of uncertainty turns out to be a sky full of opportunities.
See it as an opportunity for you to explore, play, and to ultimately land on a decision that feels good and unique to you — a place where you have your own voice and you know it.
How do you empower your inner voice and stay true to it? Tell us in the comments!