Because life is one step forward, two steps back.
Here’s the thing.
When you start to make changes in your life, you feel good. Not just because you’ve been courageous enough to take action and make some changes. You feel good because you notice some real improvements. Maybe you lose some weight. Maybe your face looks less pinched. Maybe your heart feels lighter. These things – tangible evidence that what you’re doing is good for you – encourage you to keep moving forward. Your resolve is strong and you know what you want. What’s more, some of your previously held truths about yourself start to fall away – as if you’re re-wiring yourself into the person you want to become.
Until one day, that is.
That’s when the self-doubt begins to creep in. Out of nowhere, you start questioning what you’re doing and how you could be so naive as to think that YOU could actually change. After all, aren’t you that same, fearful person you were a few months ago? Haven’t you always been like this?
These doubts may be so disruptive that you stop doing the things that were behind the improvements you saw in yourself. You stop exercising, or meditating. And start eating and drinking crap, and stressing yourself out. Your mind is working overtime.
Your mind. It can be a very useful thing, your mind. But it can also be a very destructive thing.
You see, your mind is where fear lives, along with all of fear’s sidekicks, like self-doubt, pity and despair. Your mind likes to be in control of you – in fairness, it’s used to being in control of you – and it uses fear to maintain this control. So when you go and do something fearless like making life changes, your mind fights back.
Because your mind likes you in your place.
It’s a bit like in Star Wars when the Empire struck back. The Siths didn’t like those pesky Jedis trying to be a force of good, so they fought back to put them in their place.
Now, this is a good moment to remember who won that battle, in the end. The Jedis did. Their persistence paid off. So, if the Siths represent your mind, what do the Jedis represent in you?
They represent your heart.
Without getting all woo woo on you, this is an important point. Your mind is where fear and its sidekicks self-doubt, pity and despair live. And your heart is where love and its sidekicks joy, happiness and self-belief live.
It’s your heart that drives all life changes.
The more you follow you heart and make your life changes, the stronger your heart will get. The stronger your heart gets, the less your mind will be able to knock you off course by making you fearful. Your mind will keep trying, of course, introducing whatever doubts and questions it can to keep you enslaved to its way of life, but its effect on you will diminish.
With your heart in charge, it controls your mind. You can then use it to help you make your life changes. Minds are great at planning, analysing, and creating systems and processes, all of which you need when you’re taking action.
One step forward. And two steps back. Persistence is the only way forward.
Just remember. You are a Jedi knight. And the force is strong in you.