“A leopard never changes his spots”, “you’ll never change”, “people don’t change”, “that’s just the way you are”, “you aren’t very good at that”, “are you drunk”, “shall we pack a bag for this trip”, “knowing your luck it will be a disaster”, “knowing your luck you’ll break something”, “you are high maintenance just like me”, “you are always so clumsy”, “you always get yourself into those situations”, “you’ll never get that right”… any of that sounds familiar?
As we grow up , we invent a persona for ourselves; a personal brand that we live and die by, and for some, those personal brands include being a not so nice person, (and that’s ok, each serves a purpose). Be a brand long enough and you get stuck with that label. If you’re lucky, you start to understand that your destructive behaviours and thoughts are not actually working for you so you decide to change. But woe betide the day you decide you want to change, and do…
Oh how dare you? How dare you not conform to what society has decided you are? How dare you hope for something better than you have? How dare you question the system, the sanity?” How dare you not be grateful for the half life you have been given? How dare you not accept the status quo? How dare you not play the game? We do! You must too!
And so people start pulling you back down. As cliché as it sounds, it really is like waking up from a deep sleep that you’ve been in for years. When you wake up, you’re all confused and not sure what’s going on. Then the fog lifts and you can see clearly. You know what you have to do and where you want to go. There is no going back to sleep, you have to move forward. But the people that are still asleep are having none of that. They will cling to you, guilt trip you, undermine you, sabotage you, laugh at you, belittle you, cry, scream, lash out, threaten, pout – anything to prevent you from leaving. But leave you must once you are awake. It’s a natural cycle. Don’t try and make someone follow you here if they are not ready, they won’t understand and call you crazy and selfish. And when the going gets tough, you’ll be tempted to pretend you’re asleep just to “fit in” again, that won’t work either. Be patient and find like-minded people that are vibrating on your new level of consciousness, they are out there.
Be gentle. Be gentle to yourself in this process; you may still make some sleepy decisions as you embrace your new life till you figure this out. Be gentle with the people around you, they’re just scared and don’t understand what you are going through. But do not make excuses for what and who you are to become. It doesn’t matter who you were before this very moment. What matters is who you are going to be from now on. You can have a new life, whatever that means for you. Accept nothing less. You can have it all. Cultivate courage and inner strength to continue on your journey for it may mean you have to leave your significant other, job, home, family, friends, country… You will never be alone; new companions will be found.
Don’t hate the ones leaving, and don’t hate the ones pulling you back. Just be grateful for every experience. Each is on their own journey. Today you may be the sleeper, tomorrow you may be the one leaving. There is no right and wrong – there is only choice and feedback. Be gentle.