What if what we deem normal, began to seem unreasonable?
What if ‘how things are’ began to take on a new light?
What if what we deem impossible, were no longer so?
What is often deemed impossible are those things that appear to be abnormal, and not the ‘way things are’. We navigate our days often unaware of the boundaries we create or perceive.
At every moment, in our jobs, newsfeed, family, we engage with our environment, through our minds. Our minds interpret everything through each of our senses.
Many reading this will know this as an idea, with some experiential understanding. Some, with even greater degrees of understanding.
As we cultivate new self and social awareness, what was once normal, no longer tends to be. How things work, begin to seem flawed or unreasonable. What was once impossible, seems possible.
It’s fascinating to consider that, in each moment, we are in an active creation of how we perceive the world. In partnership with our minds and our environment, we continue the dance.
Known or not, we are making every new decision and choice from this understanding of reality. This dance often continues uninterrupted due to time constraints, willingness, or missing understanding.
Until we are forced to or willing to consider otherwise, the way we feel and our place in life, may never change. At some point, many of us may find ourselves in an experience where to question ‘what is’, is the only option.
When we almost die.
When a pandemic hits.
When a loved one passes away.
When the feeling of possibility outweighs fear.
A situation where we must take a step back and look at the world around us in a new way, and the way we interact with it.
Questioning what seems to be the ‘truth’ about ourselves and our world does not come easy. To question the norm and anything that may exist outside of it, often creates dissonance.
When we contemplate ideas beyond our beliefs, often, it creates an emotional response. How we respond here, will dictate the way we choose to move forward differently, or the same.
Throughout my life, there is a thread of navigating in and out of loops focused on what seemed impossible. Impossible being my perception given the way I saw the world around me, and how I fit into it.
There are many examples where I became lost in the shuffle of life and stopped questioning it. I would be in a place where I didn’t know what I didn’t know. Nor was I asking and inquiring to find out. I believed what I did, and I was in a holding pattern. Even at some of my hardest moments, I would forget what I have learned over and again. I would forget what I am sharing here today.
What I have observed is that my feelings have often been a great clue of when I find myself in such a pattern. They have been a clue of when it is now time for me to start asking new questions, and considering what I may be missing.
I know there is value in sharing personal examples. While I could use some from recent years, in business, travel, relationships and impact, I want to go back to my youth.
Because, the unfolding of our life is often predicated on what we learned in our youth. It is in how we learned to relate to ourselves and the world around us, from a young age that can still drive us today.
I once thought it was impossible to graduate high school. My siblings didn’t finish. Many people around me had dropped out. People in my class were dropping out. People in the area that I spent most of my time, didn’t put much emphasis on completing.
What I understood to be normal, consisted of people not completing school. When that is your environment, and all you notice, to finish school seems impossible. The way I related to myself during this period, I was a lot like those people that didn’t finish.
While I always felt like an outsider, the people not finishing school seemed more like me, than those graduating. Through who I believed myself to be, I related to those making these choices more. This felt normal and the way things are. For the majority of years, I questioned nothing. This was how the world worked, based on my current capacity to understand.
At some point, I realized, though, even though I related more to these people, I was still an outsider. In my youth, this was challenging and lonely. Yet, as I look back, it was a gift.
Being in this environment, while feeling on the fringe, created space for change. It allowed me to consider something different.
And what I considered was that I had no desire to stay in my hometown. I wanted to be away from anything and everything related to it. All the fears of the unknown world ‘out there’ aside, I knew I couldn’t continue this way. I couldn’t imagine myself being here five years later.
Given what I understood about life at that time, seemingly overnight, I changed. I went from a student that always questioned authority to a bit more collaborative. I went from missing school to attending. I went from complaining to focusing.
I had a mental intervention that saw the path I was on if I did not change. My default future. What was once deemed impossible and out of the norm, became what will happen. Looking back, it’s like I became a new person. The actions that were necessary seemed to occur without extra thinking or force.
I cleared away all the mental and emotional chatter wrapped in my fragile identity. It was like it all disappeared. I had had a moment of clarity about what was possible, that changed everything.
Up until this point, I was on the brink of expulsion. I had already been removed from the normal high school. I was placed in an alternative school, as a final option to complete school.
I would not have graduated if it were not for this mental intervention that had me asking new questions. New questions of myself and what I was seeing around me.
This is only one example.
I have had many mental interventions in my life challenging who I believed myself to be, and how the world works. With each experience, I stepped into a dance where what was once ‘normal’ no longer seemed to make sense. I stepped into an experience of creating the possible out of the impossible.
In each case, there has been either a conscious or unconscious questioning occurring. I find myself looking around me asking what is real and true. What is not. I ask these same questions of myself. I ask, what seems impossible. And, what makes it impossible. Further, what will make that now possible.
For anything to take a new shape in the world around us, it starts with us. It begins with observing that something is amiss. That what we are seeing around us may not be as reasonable as once thought. Or, beginning to see how the way we perceive ourselves is keeping the status quo alive.
Be it in our most private activities.
Be it in our most intimate relationships.
Be it in our businesses.
Be it in our communities.
Be it in the world abroad.
New change begins with new questions. Questions about ourselves and the world we interact with non-stop.
When we begin to step beyond the framework we currently operate from, we will meet resistance. That resistance may take form only within ourselves. Or, there may be a mix of social pressure as well.
The social pressure can take form of; your boss, family, community, institutions or nation. But before we can do anything about the external hurdles, to what degree they exist, we must begin with ourselves.
If you are at ease within yourself, you are better able to handle whatever the environment brings.
It’s not to say it’s easy seeing your friends walk away.
It’s not saying it’s easy to let go of belonging.
It’s not saying it’s easy to walk a path alone for a while.
Bottom line, what I am saying is this….
If you find yourself seeing that what was once reasonable is no longer. You are feeling that something has to change. And you are thinking it’s time to consider new possibilities.
Be willing to do what is next.
Be willing to ask the hard questions.
Be willing to be uncomfortable.
Be willing to step out from what binds you.
Be willing to create a new possibility!
If you want support creating a new possibility, schedule a conversation with me here . I’m happy to help you uncover new insights in a 25 minute conversation together.