The simple truth is I got tired of coasting through life. It wasn’t that my life was boring or unhappy, in fact I have thus far been incredibly blessed with abundance and opportunities and adventures. But I was living life in a passive, go with the flow type of way, and despite the stories I collected to triumphantly share with others as proof that I was indeed living life and being awesome, deep down I felt that something was missing, something was not right.
For all my outlandish adventures, what did I really to have to show for my life? What deep felt dreams was I making come true? At every twist and turn, I felt like I was missing out on some level, and I had to fight against feelings of bitterness and resentment aimed at those around me that I perceived to be more successful at following their dreams.
One day, my fire mentor asked a question out loud that lodged itself into my head and heart and would not let go. He asked the question within the context of telling a story, about how he himself had come to hear the question and how he found the answer, but I heard the question as if the Universe itself was asking me directly:
What Are You Waiting For?
The question burned its way into my very being, I couldn’t shake it; I had to answer it. But I quickly realized that is not a question that is quieted without a totally honest answer. Just what was I waiting for? I want to be a fire performer who does it professionally and actually gets booked for gigs, but I was waiting until I got good enough; I was practising my technique trying to get to good enough, but I kept waiting for my health and energy levels to improve. I want to design unique clothes and works of art with yarn, but I was waiting for that one perfect design to work out, instead being just another half-baked idea that didn’t quite work. I was waiting for my life to get better, and meanwhile there was so much else to do, so many less important chores and tasks and distractions to be gotten out of the way before I could really get down to my “real life”.
I tend to pride myself on being “one of the most laid-back, go with the flow kind of people you will ever meet”. I think I developed this attitude because I had to learn to cope with wild emotional roller coasters and many instances of being incredibly NOT laid back and with the flow. Days when my hormones were balanced and I actually felt good and at peace were always a gift, so I deliberately learned how to be really good at going with the flow, rolling with punches, and just dancing through life. But after The Question invaded my mind, I realized that “going with the flow” is also another phrase “coasting”. I wasn’t actually putting energy into my life, I was taking advantage of external sources of energy and direction to propel myself though life.
You ever clean out a cupboard or closet because you finally admit that it’s a mess in there, and as you start pulling stuff out you suddenly realize that now you have to deal with all this stuff, and some of it has to find new homes elsewhere, which means those areas need to be cleaned up to make space, and suddenly what was supposed to be one chore has turned into the dismantling of your entire life?
Revising your life to get back into gear and stop coasting is a lot like that, but more intimidating.
But once The Question gets burned into you, you have no excuse. What are you waiting for?
What. Are. You. Waiting. For?