“I’m tired of going round in circles trying to decide!” Exasperation whistled through her email.
With the new year bearing down and urgency to make resolutions, familiar voices rang in her head about finally doing something to make her body perfect.
Should she sign up for the body intensive or not?
Our capacity to make decisions is held up as a sign of having higher intelligence. The soft tissue of our cerebral cortex allows us to override primal instincts to make conscious choices that enhance our wellbeing. Yet, why is it that some decisions paralyze us?
It depend’s what’s in the driving seat.
Ego or Consciousness
Think of it like this. You’re in a taxi and you can choose between two drivers. One is ego. The other is consciousness.
Let’s consider their profiles.
Ego promises to keep you safe by driving along the same roads – over and over. Back and forth. It knows the routes so well it pretty much drives with it’s eyes closed. When ego is in the driving seat life becomes predictable, then boring then grinds to a halt.
Occasionally you wake up with a jolt and in a fit of frustration demand that ego drive you to a new destination and it’ll say “Sure!” And it’ll take you along some new side roads, but one way or another it’ll deliver you back to the same starting place. Or it’ll say “No way! You don’t want to go there. It’s too dangerous. It’s not going to be pretty. You’re better off staying where you are.”
Consciousness, on the other hand, loves an adventure. It drives with a dynamo flashlight that illuminates paths smack bang in front of your nose that you hadn’t seen before. And because its flashlight recharges itself the more you elect consciousness to be the driver, the more the paths, tracks and freeways of your life open up.
And consciousness comes with an additional bonus. It hooks you up with a super scout (a.k.a. intuition) who knows all the short cuts, and just the right people and situations you need to experience increased levels of joy, health, clarity and fulfillment.
The choice of driver might seem obvious but the thing to remember is that ego is the default driver. It will always claim the driving seat unless you invite consciousness in.
The push and the pull
“I feel pulled to go but I also feel a lot of uncomfortableness. What should I do?”
She wasn’t asking me to tell her whether to take the class or not. She was asking what she needed to do to elect consciousness as her driver.
So I told her about….
The potent pause
Pauses are seemingly insignificant but they’re life changing.
Good pauses are:
Take a walk.
Take three breaths.
Call a good friend who doesn’t tell you how to live your life and ask her to remind you about what’s going well for her or you.
Walk around the room with your belly in the lead.
Brush your dog.
Take your favorite pause.
The moment you press the pause button two things happen; you wake consciousness up and signal ego to go sit on the side bench.
The point of taking a pause is not to silence the ego chatter. Your thinking might continue to loop around, that’s OK. The purpose of the pause is to refocus your attention. When you make the choice to take that walk, or brush your dog, you activate your capacity to choose, and this begins to dissolve the glue that grips ego to the driving seat.
Now, it’s often hard to pause because when it comes to decisions ego operates in two modes; urgent or stuck.
So, there’s one more thing you can do to secure consciousness as your driver.
Allow yourself not to know
“I’m feeling a lot more open now. The grasping feeling has gone.”
She’s on her way to knowing what she needs to do to support her wellbeing. Not by weighing up endless pros and cons but from intuition and clear seeing.
Feeling open and spaciousness is a sign that consciousness is tuning in to the energy of soul. Ego is no longer trying to second guess outcomes, control results or keep life safe.The thing she’d done that super charged her pause was to give herself permission not to know the answer. To be OK with not knowing.
An inner posture of not knowing is a depth charger. It takes all the surface activity of the everyday ego mind; the calculations, fears, projections and doubt, and dissolves them in the void of pure being.
When you allow yourself not to know the answer to a question, instead of dancing at the edge of your life in endless ambivalence you penetrate the crystalline pool of pure potential.
The answer to your decision might not arrive immediately. But what does arise is the awareness that you stand at a critical moment that connects you with all of life.
You recognize that your choice is not simply about ‘me, me, me’. You choice is for the future of life.
Because the truth is that moments of choice are intended to wake you up to the incredible gift that the capacity to choose is.
And with this realization comes the potency of your authentic power: The power you have to choose what feels right in your heart that serves not just you, but all of humanity.
As you move into 2016 with multiple decisions ahead or you, I wish you this:
May you be ignited by your heart’s burning
To tell the truth
And revel in compassion for your’s and others human messiness.
May you pause often and drink the delicious stillness of your being
And dance to the tune of delight.
May your dark corners rebound with unsuspecting clarity
And may you know that you are eternally loved.