How do you know what is right for you?

Posted by Lynne Russell, Thursday 1st January, 2015

Some of my best personal learning may well have come about as a result of some of my “worst decisions”! In the ever evolving world of personal and spiritual development there are more choices than you can shake a Talking Stick at – Ho! So from the perspective of a practitioner and a fellow traveller, these musings are offered in the spirit of sharing and support.

Friends, family, colleagues, therapists and the media may all be convinced they know the very thing that will set you on track. Just because everyone else seems to be reading “The Power of Now” or taking a “Course in Miracles” – is it necessarily what you need right now? Maybe yes, and maybe no.

We are all different; one size can never fit all, and what might work like a charm for some might not be the key that unlocks the door to your fulfilled future. When people make their recommendations do they know you well and understand you? Do they know if you need a gentle nudge to join your dots or a sledgehammer to break through your blocks? What are the areas you want to work with? What inner territory do you wish to explore? Are you in an open-ended exploration of soulful purpose or wishing specifically to work with an issue, belief or behavioural pattern?

Knowing yourself, being familiar with your traits and patterns is helpful. Knowing what you want to work with helps in prioritising the list of what is on offer. Critically, knowing that when people make recommendations it may well be mostly about them, and what they see as their key criteria, rather than what might be a good next step for you.

Creating a list of your own criteria can be useful. What really matters to you? In terms of your life values, the areas you would like to focus on, how you respond to input, and any practical matters. The old adage that if you want to see what a person believes, watch what they do is, in my experience, certainly true. What clues do your actions give you about your deepest beliefs? By being more aware of your beliefs and criteria, you can make your choices more conscious instead of them being the tail that wags the dog. As we take responsibility for our choices, we grow from them.

On a Road to Nowhere?

Be aware too of the saboteur within; that can convince us that we are too busy, too skint, or that next time we’ll do it. Maybe it leaps with abandon into the latest thing without lingering before or after to explore the depths. The road of self development offers endless exciting possibilities of culs-de-sac and back alleys.

Perhaps all the roads lead to Rome anyway – we cannot escape ourselves. Our core “stuff” is evident in every moment. Both within ourselves and in our outer lives, we are the physical evidence of our beliefs and sense of self. Maybe whatever we undertake will reveal that which needs the light to be shone upon it. Entering into this process in the spirit of open minded curiosity is a useful frame through which we can view the unfolding picture. This more resourceful stance can help us to see and mine the gold from any depths plumbed.

Trust your gut reaction as well as the collective and personal intellectual response to the dazzling array of options offered. If you are on an unhurried journey of self exploration the process may be a joyful one. In a place of crisis however, the wood and the trees can become very blurred and seeing our path through even more difficult.

You cannot make a “bad” decision, just the best one you can at the time with the resources you have available to you then. Ultimately we may never know if we have made the “right” choice. Seen within a longer, broader context or timeframe our choices can look quite different, surprising and sometimes delighting us. Trusting in this is a useful thread as we navigate our way around life’s maze. Follow the threads that take you towards your own truth, not that of others. Towards the experience of being really you, unapologetically and delightfully you.

The Precision of the Inner Compass

Perhaps finding this thread is similar to the choice of any good remedy. Find one that fits your profile and dreams. Find tailored resources – practitioners, books, courses and processes that suit you; the ones that “click” with you. When we take a moment to tune in to ourselves, we can recognise that feeling when it happens.

Or perhaps you more frequently experience the reverse signal sent from deep within. The heart-sink, the twist of the gut, the quickening of the pulse – our system has many ways to let us know how we really feel about life and the choices we make.

Consider the “strength” required – are you a gentle soul for whom a light touch is ideal, or if it ain’t hurting you feel it ain’t working and you want your money back! Do you respond best to little and often, or intensive and concentrated bursts? Are you a group work person or do you make your leaps within your own space? Do you need to re-visit old ground or chart new waters? And how often do you need that “dose”?

Perhaps most important of all, trust that we already have the answers we need somewhere within. Sometimes it can be helpful to have a little help to shine the torch in the right place. It has been said that the best teaching is simply that of reminding someone what they already know. Finding those resources can create a wonderful moment when you are reconnected with that inner knowing. Whether from a book, a course or workshop, a practitioner, art, music or connecting with nature, the key that opens your door is you and the choices you make.

Whatever you choose to do, your response will give you information and insights about yourself. The more we get to know ourselves the better we can be at making choices. Feed the information and insights you gather en route back into your own loop, refining your inner compass with every step.

The key is not what happens, but what we do about it….

…and some of my “worst decisions”? Well, that’s another story…

© 2012 Lynne Russell

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Lynne Russell

Homeopath, Coach, NLP & Hypnotherapy Practitioner

Lynne is a qualifed professional homeopath, coach, NLP and hypnotherapy practitioner with practices in East and West Sussex, and via Skype. In addition to her practice she also blogs and runs workshops on health and personal development.

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