Starting Over - Or Running Away?
We've all been there (or at least I have!), feeling overwhelmed and just wanting to quit, maybe pack up our things and move to the other side of the world. But when you actually do it, and do it over and over, is that really starting over? Or is it just running away?
In my twenties I hit the reset button several times, never feeling like I was living the 'right' life. Something always felt off. And because the sheer volume of things I felt needed changing was so great, I opted to pack up and leave the country in search of a clean slate. But the thing is, my core problems always came along wherever I went. So I'd manifest them on the other side of the world, looking a little different but feeling just the same. It was only when I returned home and decided to stay and face it all, that I felt a sense that this was going to bring the healing and closure that I needed. And it did in many ways, BUT every now and then I still feel myself wanting to slip out the back door and run for the horizon. Fight or flight, right?
When I feel overwhelmed, overworked or am being a perfectionist about how things 'should ' be, that's when I feel the urge to flee.
But I know that making the effort to create those changes right here at home, is where the work gets done, because while I love to travel, I’ve learned that integration is one of the biggest components of change.
It also can feel like homework, which is less exciting than the lesson (ugh, I know). Traveling and being taught new things are both external changes, integration is an internal change, and one which will stay with you for much longer.
So when you feel the urge to pack your bags, ask yourself: Am I running?
Chances are you might find a greater, deeper, more insightful journey waiting for you - inside.
How do you know if you’re restarting or running?
Are you feeling overwhelmed with your current life?
Do you feel unempowered and want to hide?
Are you avoiding conflict, fear, or doing the work?
If you listen deep down and your voice says yes to one of these things then perhaps that trip you planned or that job you've taken in some magical foreign place is truly an escape. An awesome one, don’t get me wrong, but let’s call it how we see it.
Whereas if you’re planning that trip or taking that job because you do feel empowered, and taking this well thought-out step is leading towards the life you want to build - then the intention is different (you're not running away from a conflict with your partner or family member that you don't want to deal with). Perhaps then that’s a healthy reset that shakes off everything that doesn’t align with your values and building a life that does from scratch.
I'd like to point out that not only can you do a reset at home, but generally speaking it's easier to do so because you have a whole support system around you to help you succeed. Plus starting over somewhere you don't know anyone sounds and feels liberating at first, but can get lonely after a while. Plus plus! in my experience trying on being an immigrant in Australia, it can be exhausting attempting a life-do-over when you're constantly having to re-learn the whereabouts and how-to's of every amenity and service you took for granted knowing about at home (ie. where's the clinic?!), and potentially having visa restrictions get in the way of your opportunities.
But there’s no black & white here (or anywhere for that matter!), it’s all shades of grey and who knows, a trip you leave on to escape can end up turning into that building block you need to set things right at home.
The idea is to be honest with ourselves, listen to ourselves and be brave enough to step up and do the work inside when all we want to do is run.
Because often what we’re running from, dwells within us and ultimately, there’s no hiding from that. If you catch yourself wanting to head for the hills, remember you don’t have to face it all on your own. Ask for help from your support network, or seek out a coach or healer depending on what work you need to do. There are lots of people who want to help you succeed and share your bliss.
You have an opportunity that the majority of mankind didn't for the last 2000+ years: You have the freedom to CREATE the life you want, a life by design. And though it might seem daunting sometimes it is a beautiful, incredible gift. The path to fulfillment is inside, not out there. You are good enough, smart enough, talented enough - You're enough. And you can do this.
So the ultimate question is: do you want to build the life you want, or run away from it?
Wishing you a peaceful road, wherever it may take you <3