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I have a confession to make. I’m not a guru. I don’t aspire to be a celebrity or someone to look up to. I am on a journey and one of the beautiful things about this challenge that I have created for myself this year (to blog once a week and share experiences and learnings from my own life) is that I get to share this journey with a community of likeminded people like yourself who are also on a journey.
I struggle. I have my ups and downs, my highs and lows, and through these experiences I always learn something and through learning I have something of value that I can share with others.
Over the past week I have struggled. I really have. It hasn’t been fun. I’ve had some pretty low moments and I’ve had to call on some of the people I trust and respect in my life to help me find an objective perspective on what I have been feeling and experiencing.
This week I sought some coaching support from a wonderful person in my life Vee. When I turn to Vee for support I do so knowing that she doesn’t have the “answers” to “fix” my “problems”. Instead, she has a mirror that she holds up to my behaviour that allows me to see it for what it is and to make my own observations and about what it means and how I can grow.
And this week I confronted a truth about who I have been for most of my life. I have been someone who is heavily invested in fantasy.
As someone whose life is centred around creativity, most of the time having a strong imagination is a great advantage. A strong imagination allows me to visualise new things that don’t yet exist. It allows me to imagine a more positive future, and when I am following my purpose and on centre, I am able to work backward from this imagined future and assemble the actions required to make this imagined future a reality.
However, this vivid imagination does not always work to my advantage.
Since I was a child, I’ve grown up with the fantasy that I will magically meet the woman of my dreams, fall in love, get married, settle down, have children and live happily ever after. When I was young I just assumed that this would happen in my early twenties and I couldn’t wait to grow up so that I would reach the point when this fantasy would become a reality. This fantasy created a belief system that once this happened, in the future, my problems would all be solved and I would then be happy.
But this has not been my journey. Instead, my journey has been to discover that in reality this a fantasy. And my journey, now in my early thirties, is to unravel this fantasy to unlock the awesome possibilities of my destiny.
I recently discovered a powerful insight into the difference between fate and destiny. These definitions of course are just interpretations and so are only as useful as they can be to a particular person, but for me the insight has been really valuable.
Fate is what happens when we relinquish the power of choice and just allow life to happen to us.
Destiny is what happens when we act, with the knowledge of our true purpose and our power of choice, to explore the possibilities of our true potential.
We are all on a path but we can choose to stay stuck in the status quo or we can choose to take action in a direction that might seem at first uncomfortable, but will guide us to an unknown and awesome future.
Fantasy serves us. We know, scientifically that our brain doesn’t distinguish between the sensations of an imagined or remembered experience and an actual experience. And so, fantasy allows us to experience the positive sensations here in the present associated with a pleasurable (but imagined) experience.
The problem with fantasy is that it’s not real.
And so when we are denied the actual experience of what we imagine for the future we become disappointed. And so we can cycle between the pleasure of fantasy and the disappointment of reality and remain stuck here for as long as we choose.
The other problem with fantasy is that it prolongs happiness. It trains us to believe that happiness is “out there” in the future and therefore always slightly out of our grasp. And so, if happiness is out there in the future, it can’t be experienced here in the present and therefore we can’t be happy now.
Fantasy consumes the energy of action and real potential.
It blinds us from the infinite and unknown possibilities that await us if we follow our destiny.
This week, I’ve taken the blindfold off and in doing so I’m left with a massive void. There is pain in letting go of fantasy because in the past it’s been enjoyable. But enjoyable only in the short-term. I’ve made a choice to open myself to the possibilities of experiencing life and love in ways that I can’t imagine or control. I feel vulnerable, but I know that if I am going to live a self-determined life, as an adult, then this is the path that I must take.
What role does fantasy play in your life?
How long have you used fantasy to numb the fear of stepping out and taking action into the unknown and exploring a potential destiny that you can’t possibly imagine?
Take the awesome path with me and choose to recognise that fantasy is something implanted in us from outside that will keep us stuck in the (uncomfortable) comfort zone of the status quo.
Choose the awesome possibilities of reality!
Til next week, Be Awesome!
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