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Pulling Your Head Out Of The Sand

Feb 25, 2008
Authenticity is a buzz word that has been tossed about a lot lately in popular culture. Although it can sometimes be used to justify not changing in our lives, I think for the most part it is a needed word in our vocabulary. Maybe that's because I try not to over think it. I define it as simply living the design God gave you. Sounds simple doesn't it? Why then is it a concept that so easily eludes us?

From birth we begin to construct our lives in such a way as to make life work for us. We cry to be held. We say we like things that we don't, to get that girl or guy to notice us. We choose a career to please Dad. We embellish the resume to get the job. We buy the stuff on credit to feel like we are okay and maybe even have arrived a little. We sell our design in exchange for what we hope will be a successful life. In this process we encounter a lot of things that don't fit our model of success as well as the normal frustrations of life.

Whenever something happens in our lives that we don't want, our first instinct is to push it away. This is true of small things like heartburn as well as the big stuff, like death and betrayal. In fact, much of modern advancement hinges on doing away with these disruptions. When we push away an annoyance we basically tune it out. This avoidance is as natural as it is unavoidable. But when we stay tuned out past the initial response, that's avoidance and a decision to say no to reality.

Whether conscious of it or not, avoidance is always our choice. High credit card bill? Don't look at the statement. Dead-end job? Zone out until quitting time. Appalled by the state of the world? Turn the news off. The more we avoid, the more stuck we become. And what we refuse to feel never goes away; it grows.

Avoidance leaves us in a panicked state of not liking where we are but fearing if we pull our head out of the sand our carefully constructed world will fall apart. We forget who we are or maybe that we are anything at all. We buy everything everyone tells us about who we are. We step on the water hose of life with all our might and command the water to flow. But if we can simply step off the hose and allow the water of our design to flow through us, we eventually arrive at a state of true success.

While at first this may seem passive, it's anything but. We end up being freer, more creative, and better able to overcome our obstacles because our heads are out of the sand and we can actually see where we are going.

The first time you shift from avoidance to freedom, just by accepting what's authentically happening in your life, you have an aha experience. Life seems clearer and you become motivated to live this way more. You realize that by embracing the emotion of what you have been avoiding, that the emotion and fear is allowed to move through you. It moves on and you have survived. It is at this point that you realize that you are in some degree of avoidance almost all the time. Car problems, money woes, what others think about you there's no end to what we avoid. In each case, there's another opportunity to embrace authenticity and to let the stress, fear, and worry flow away.

Be careful in this process not to over-think. Simply allow what is to be, instead of dissecting why it is. Sure there's a time for analysis, but only after you've embraced your emotional reality.
About the Author
Craig Miller is a life designer, nationally known speaker, and experience creator. He has helped thousands learn to dream again, get unstuck, and successfully make the leap to the next level of abundant living. Read more of Craig's work at http://www.neverlandlifedesign.com.
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