Do you feel as though you’ve lost your way? Does the start of 2013 have you overwhelmed? Perhaps it seems as if you’re going in circles and don’t know what to do. Maybe you’re just tired of the same old grind, or know you were meant for more than this. Today, more than any other time in history, people are dissatisfied with their lives, and hoping that the start of a new year will turn things around!
When some people look back on the good/bad of the past year they flip-flop between saying that their lives are a mess and being grateful for all the good that happened. Some may even begin looking for the thing that caused everything to slip away if the year didn’t “produce” like they expected. Was it their finances, their jobs, their relationships, their stress level? Was there a cause at all? People spend countless hours looking to find the reasons for their bad luck.
But what if it wasn’t something you did? What if it wasn’t something that happened to you? What if it was something else? What if the way to find your way is as simple as asking for directions?
Have you ever been in the car with someone who won’t admit they’re lost? It’s frustrating. You know they need to stop and ask for directions. Life is much like that. We get angry, start blaming others, and become frustrated with how things are unfolding. When in reality, if we just asked for directions we could get back on track. What if the key to moving forward in your life is as simple as understanding that you’re lost, and need merely to stop and ask for directions?
Now you may be sitting there thinking, “How can I change my life? I don’t have that much control. I definitely could do so much more; but if you knew what to do, wouldn’t you be doing it?”
You’d think so, but look at the countless people who drive around for hours rather than asking for directions. They may eventually get to their destination, but after a lot of stress, anger and unhappiness.
So many of us are out there “driving around” and we don’t even realize we’re lost. Perhaps you didn’t get the break at work. Perhaps you didn’t find your knight in shining armor. Perhaps you didn’t learn how to budget your time or money. So what?
No matter what you think you should have done, or wish you learned, you didn’t get to where you are by accident. You did something to arrive where you are, and often that something happened because you spent too much time wandering instead of asking for directions. If you aren’t living your ideal life there is only one explanation: Somewhere along the way, you lost your self, and you haven’t asked for directions.
This concept may seem simple, but hear me out. This isn’t hocus pocus. My definition of lost is very different from a person who spends a lifetime finding myself as an excuse for not taking action. What do I mean when I say you’re lost and need direction? I mean that at some point in your life, you stopped being true to yourself and quit following your internal road map. You may have done it a piece at a time, or at one powerful moment. But if you think back, you will find a moment in time when things shifted. A time that you chose to act in a way that went against what you knew to be right for you—you chose to listen to the backseat driver who led you away from your destination. You chose not to listen to your instincts. You were not being true to yourself.
So what happens when you do that? You begin to take short cuts. You stop checking your internal map. You begin to wander.
Is there a price to wandering? You know the answer to that question. Each time in my life that I didn’t know where my life was headed, I felt hopeless and scared. The funny part was that if I let myself, I always knew when I wasn’t going in the direction of how I wanted my life to be. Without exception, every time you ignore who you are or what you want from your life, a little bit of who you are, and what you stand for slips away.
So the next time you feel lost, ask for some direction. Find out the quickest, most efficient way to get where you want to go, and then take action to get there. And there is no better time to move in a new direction, than the start of a New Year!