We can’t live freely. No one can. We need self constructed rules, so our brains don’t explode.
We all need rules in order to feel comfortable. Even your favorite A-list movie star lives within rules that a regular person can’t even fathom.
You tell yourself that you can’t ask your boss for a raise.
You tell yourself that you can’t find a better job that matches your superpowers.
You tell yourself that you don’t need to love what you do.
You function well within this mental cage. You don’t want to be able to live a fully unrestricted life because it would be too free.
The problem is that your self-created cage is too small. You don’t see the little door behind the couch. The door that opens up to the perfect playground. Those cool monkey bars that challenge your muscles. Those cool puzzles that challenge your mind.
As I walked my usual walk with my dog, I thought of taking a different route. However, the more I thought about it the more that I didn’t like the idea. I wanted to take the same route. I liked the houses I walked past. I liked the same trees. I didn’t want to walk a new route. I didn’t want new houses and trees to distract me. I need to think and let my mind unravel.
The regular route allows me to tap into my subconscious.
We complain about cubicles, co-workers and bosses, but many of us really need these things. We need them because it’s what we are used to. At least for right now.
This may seem bleak, but we can’t always be bold. Sometimes it hurts too much. We need to pick our spots. We choose actions that give us the best chance of at success. Most of the time we are cautious. We don't want to put ourselves too far out on a limb to only end up failing.
This isn’t a terrible thing. We don’t want to stick our arms out of the cage in the darkness and get them bitten off.
We want to reach out and grab a dream that makes us happy. However, if we grabbed after every dream our heads would spin right off. So we allow ourselves to be wimpy and to take the easy route.
99% of the time this is a good thing. We make the safe choice and we get to keep our hand.
Picking Your Spots
We begin to have problems when we take the safe route too often, going through the unknown door to satisfy our curiosity is a much needed part of a career. We look around at our self constructed cages and say, "This is quite nice. I have a refrigerator with some decent snacks, a working toilet, a 401k, a Wii, and a car that helps me feel like I’m escaping my cage.” We tell ourselves that we don’t really need to see what’s behind the door.
But we are just fooling ourselves.
We pretend we are happy because we are afraid of getting hurt.
Your cage may be fine right now, but at some point you should go find a new shell. One that’s going to help you grow.
Yes, as you’ve probably guessed, I’m talking about your career. If you aren’t challenged by your work then you aren’t using your superpowers to help others. You’re coasting along enjoying the cozy confines of your cage.
Your Cousin the Hermit Crab
You are no different from a hermit crab. You need new shells to help you house your new superpowers. You need to open that door and check out some new shells. You can always go back to that old shell. I promise.
If you are happy just coasting, then don’t stop, but if you aren’t happy then what are you doing about it?
What are you learning that helps you find a bigger shell with a better view?
Nathan Hangen and I created a new program that focuses on helping creative people bust out of their shells and unleash their superpowers. Click here to find out more. This is for you, if you're tired of that same old shell, and you want to create a life and business where you can unleash your superpowers.
* I have some quality guest posts out there and I need to create a post dedicated to spreading the link love, but one of my favorites is on Jonathan Fields blog. It's called Stop Resisting and Start Creating. Leave a comment and join in on the conversation. Thanks.
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Image courtesy of paix120