About eight to ten years ago, I started to have this vague realization that I wasn't happy with the path my life was taking. For quite some time, I tried to ignore it. When I realized that ignoring it wasn't going to alleviate my discomfort, I started to take action. As I researched various ways to make myself feel better, I kept hearing the same advice, "do what you love, and the rest will come." I became increasingly frustrated; I knew what I didn't want, but I didn't know what I wanted or how to find it.
Next, I started to hear the advice of "go back to your childhood and remember what you loved, what brought you joy, the thing you could do for hours on end and never get bored." That's not going to help me, I thought. There is only one thing I did as a kid. If I wasn't on a horse or taking care of a horse, I was pretending I was a horse!" I don't ride horses anymore. Horses are no longer a part of my life. I was lost and didn't know what to do. Years passed before I figured it out.
My path had become obscured with "don'ts," "shoulds," and "can'ts.' I don't ride horses anymore. I should do something that makes me money. I can't run around pretending I'm a horse. With these thoughts, I cut myself off from my path. I couldn't see which way I should go because I fell into the trap of believing that my life had to look a certain way or that I had to do things as society dictated. Finally, I could no longer ignore the visceral pull towards horses. I started riding again. It was like coming home. I had the sense of seeing an old friend after a long time and picking up right where we left off. Listening to my inner wisdom, which led me back to horses, allowed me to find my way. Coming back to horses, I realized that I wanted to be in relationship with them. I wanted to work in partnership with horses. All of this brought me to my path. I discovered Equine Facilitated Learning. I found what lights me up.
Our thoughts and the beliefs of others that we allow into our brains and let take hold can make it challenging to find the path we need to follow. By clearing away those limiting beliefs, we can find our way back to ourselves. The journey can be long and winding or more direct, depending on the choices we make. What I have learned from my pilgrimage, as well as the many conversations that I have had with people who have also made the journey back to their path, is that this is how you can connect with true happiness and joy. Remember, sometimes you need to go back to the beginning in order to see where you need to go.
Karen Lindstrom Life Coaching