Hello everyone. Welcome to our March blog.
Have you ever been driving or walking somewhere and realised you don’t know where you are or how to get to your destination? I was talking about this with my friend and fellow coach, Christina Brittain, this week.
Before the advent of sat navs I regularly lost my way. I am particularly bad at reading maps and even worse at trying to remember a set of directions. When I have been lost, I have had a whole range of experiences which vary from fear and anxiety through to excitement and enjoying the adventure.
What I realised is, that when I am alone and lost, I tend towards feeling anxious and fearful. When I have someone with me, losing my way feels much more like a fun adventure – an exciting voyage of discovery to be shared.
When I first moved to live in Leeds, a city I was unfamiliar with, I regularly got lost in the one-way systems. At that time, I would just follow the car in front of me, hoping I would eventually come to a place that I recognised. This was a strategy that wasn’t entirely successful but gave me a little bit of companionship in that I was ‘with’ another car on the journey. It wasn’t a conscious decision, but now I see that I was joining someone else on their journey temporarily because journeying together, as we have said, is so much more fun. Unfortunately, there was an issue in that the car in front NEVER shared the same journey or destination as I did, and I invariably became even more lost.
Therapy and coaching works very much like having a travelling partner and a companion to get lost with. When we feel lost and cannot see the road ahead, it seems much less daunting when we have someone by our side. As a coach and therapist, I do not see my role as showing someone the way to go. If I led clients along my journey, or to my intended destination, it would only be an effective destination for me – just as when I followed the car in front. I may offer ideas or insights when they show up in the moment, but my role is more as a passenger. I sit beside to offer love and acceptance and companionship, whatever the journey.
At the start of the therapy adventure, you don’t have to know where you are going to, or the full road-by road breakdown. You may just know that you want to be somewhere different from where you are at the beginning. As is often said, the joy is in the travelling rather than the destination. As we travel together, we will undoubtedly see and experience new things. Some things we may like, others we may not. That is simply the scenery along the way. It is, and will always be, ever-changing. We may take longer to pass through some parts. We may even need an overnight stop to refuel or collect provisions. All of that is ok – just part of the adventure.
So, for me, stepping into coaching and therapy is like inviting someone to come along on your journey. It can change the fear of being lost into excitement for seeing new and unexpected sights on our journey. It means someone else is there to witness those new sights and celebrate with you, or to sit beside you in your doubt and anxiety until you move through to finding yourself again.
And finding yourself again, I would suggest, is always the destination. Whatever we believe we need, wherever we think we have to get to, it is always within us. We already have what we seek, we already are what we seek. It is our home-base. All roads are designed to lead us back home, back to that place where we reside in peace of mind, love, acceptance, and wisdom.
As Sydney Banks said ~
“And in this game of life, we all search for ourselves. When I say selves, I mean ‘inner selves’, the thing that created the life in the first place. Now consciously, most of us are not aware of this. But if you’re searching for happiness; if you’re searching for tranquility; if you’re searching just to have a nice, peaceful, loving, understanding life… in actual fact, you’re searching for your inner self.”
With deep love