Ok so let’s talk about straying off our path. It happens to all of us right? No one follows a perfect path that leads straight to their destination. We all veer off the road every once in a while to visit the land of the unknown. Otherwise we wouldn’t have any life skills or any true learning experiences. The biggest obstacles teach us the biggest lessons. They are important for our survival. I could write a whole post about “The Path” but I’ll try to condense it so you can at least have a sense of what it means. To me The Path is when you want to live a life with intention. You want to have some control in CREATING your life not just watching it. People usually take The Path when they want to make a change in their life. Become a better person, lose weight, stop an addiction, have a better relationship. It takes the clear intention that whatever it is that isn’t working nor leading you down the road you want to go so you choose a different path. The craziest thing about The Path is that in order to make these changes to lead you to the good life, you must do some of the hardest things that you can do. When you want to live a life on intention is takes effort, strength, determination, mindfulness, truth, patience, grace, faith, etc and the reward is far more worth anything gained by taking the easy road.
I stopped drinking back on New Years as my New Years resolution. I would make a small goal and every time I would reach it I would make another one. 30 days, then 60, then 100. I didn’t really have a vision of how long but I was just going as long as I could go. I chose to do this because a whole year before I found myself often saying “I need to stop drinking”. I didn’t drink a lot and I didn’t consider myself an alcoholic but my body just wasn’t handling it anymore. I would get bad hangovers sometimes after only one beer. I have a child too so it wasnt really fair to have a hangover when he wanted to play with me. So finally after a year of ignoring the signs, I decided to pay attention to them which led me to stop. Lesson: Drink and your stomach hurts. Drink and you have no energy. Drink and you can’t play with your son the next day. Drink and you eat badly. None of these leading me towards my goals.
I stopped for 5 months which is the longest I had gone without a drink since I ever started drinking. Aside from when I was pregnant of course. Well the first drink I had was with my mom. Great excuse huh. I never get to drink with my mom. We were on girls vacation in New York and all the girls were having drinks and it took so much effort the first few times for me to pass up the chance. Then I caved. I just wanted to have a drink with the girls no biggie right. And it wasn’t. But then this opened the gateway back into the drinking world. I didn’t drink all the time but you know at least now if out to dinner and I wanted a margarita I could have one. Well I went out dancing the other night for my boyfriends birthday and decided t o have one drink too many. Spent the latter half of the night feeling sick and drunk and the next morning the god awful hangover hit me again. Oh yea, THIS is why I stopped.
We have endless choices throughout our lives. Everything we do is a choice most of the time subconsciously. Most of us go through EVERY DAY of our lives not ever really aware of the millions of choices we are making. We just float through life on our habit rafts. Then what happens when something goes wrong? Well, we blame the outside source of course… they did it to us… we didn’t choose this! It’s their fault, not ours!
The biggest thing is once we realize that we have responsibility in all our choices therefore taking responsibility in our circumstances we start to think more about them. We start to choose more wisely. We balance our pros and cons and choose which fits best. The hard part about being human though is that we are like machines. We go years through life picking what is easiest. I mean take a look at advanced technology. The things that are most successful are the things that make something easier for us. It’s just become natural. In most cases though, if it’s easy it usually ain’t right for us. Sometimes we want things to be easy so we stray back into that temporary bliss. Here is the thing though. Your higher self is always on your side. Deep down under alllll the junk you’ve piled on top of your self, your heart, your God, your source, the universe,whatever you want to call IT,…IT knows the right thing to do. IT gives you signs constantly. Whether IT fills your stomach with anxiety, give you a hangover, places a circumstance in your way. IT is giving you a clue, or an omen, that if you listen you will make the decision that leads you back towards your purpose. And yes we all have one! The thing about when you are on The Path, GOOD things happen to you. These thing happen not only because you deserve them but as proof that you are going the right way and when you stray you now have things to lose. When I stopped drinking my relationship with my boyfriend got better, my health got better, I was a better mother, I had more energy, i felt like a better person. A time that really stood out to me was that I had gotten pulled over once coming out of a club and I was sober. The police were just looking for drunk drivers. I passed the sobriety test and was on my way. I couldn’t stop thinking about how normally I would have had a drink or two and i could have very well gotten a DUI. Man was that some proof. Now by drinking again I have the opportunity to mess up those things. Maybe you’ve always had those things but when you stray you find you appreciate them more and you WANT to go the right way. A reason straying is actually a positive thing.
Now straying from your path could have a different result for everyone. To some straying could lead to life changing experiences, while to others it may not make too big of a difference. Here’s the thing though
SOMETHING IS A MILLION THINGS ARE GOING TO HAPPEN. You know why? Because, remember those clues? if you aren’t going towards your purpose doesn’t mean your higher self still doesn’t want to. It will put clues in your way to try to get you back on track. So many times we recognize clues yet we fail to give them proper meaning and pay attention. Just because you ignore them, doesn’t mean they will stop. In fact they won’t stop until the lesson is learned. They will just start coming at a bigger and bigger cost. Usually it takes something BIG for you to really notice you have even strayed.
The deep down and only true choice we have is we can choose to suffer or choose not to suffer. Suffering is indeed a choice though. Ideally the less suffering possible, the longer we get to spend living a fulfilled life of purpose.
Now of course we cherish our straying because like said, they come with lessons. But what makes lessons important? Actually putting the knowledge you have learned to work. “Knowledge is useless unless put into action”. So this “something” that happens, big or small, it comes at an expense but we gain knowledge…we see how we have strayed and we get back on the right path. But what now. How do we apply that knowledge? Well you think another chance to stray isn’t going to happen? Of course it will!!! But NOW we get to use what we learned from the last time and apply it. We get to make a smarter choice. We still get to choose…suffer or not suffer? I mean haven’t you heard though “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over yet expecting different results“. If we are truly applying our knowledge then the answer is of course NOT suffer. We move on stronger and more willing. If we forget what we learned, “‘something” is bound to happen again, but we seem to not have learned so suffering it is….again! Again cherish it? Yes always but again, there comes a time when, if we want not to suffer, we will have to make the choice to use what we learned from what we’ve previously experienced. Know that every time you choose to suffer, although not right away, it is an expense. How many expenses do you really want to make?
The Path will always be within reach for you whenever you choose to follow it. There can be a time where you feel so disconnected with your source that it feels as though you are lost but there is never a time you can be completely disconnected, as your higher self is the Soul of your being. So don’t worry, no matter how far off the path you may seem, if willing, you can always find your way back. That is the best part. There is Hope found in that. Learn to listen to your body, to your circumstances, to your Self. Learn the lesson to be learned. Apply it along the way. CHOOSE the road that takes an effort. CHOOSE not to suffer. CHOOSE FULILLING YOUR PURPOSE. CHOOSE IT!