Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Inner Renovations

By Amy Phillips-Gary

Do you ever feel like you're boxed into a room with a very very low ceiling?

I certainly do at times. It's as if there's some imaginary boundary that's preventing me from moving ahead with my plans and intentions.

Whether it's a ceiling on my finances, my relationships, my creativity and career or my ability to have a healthier fitter body, that blocked feeling is oh so real.

And I put the ceiling there.

It is almost epidemic the way many of us erect ceilings on our own capacity and then act as if we're helplessly trapped.

What's your ceiling look like?
Take some time and identify the ways in which you've constricted your life. It could be that you've modeled the example of the adults who surrounded you as you grew up.

You might want to live a more financially abundant life than your parents, for example, but it seems scary or perhaps even “wrong” to transcend that ceiling you've always known.

The ceiling you've created for yourself may have made sense in your past.

If you experienced abuse, diminishing or making yourself invisible could have been a very smart way to stay safe and preserve your well-being as much as possible.

The boundaries we've set for ourselves are neither good nor bad.

Avoid judgmental labels and devote more of your energy to noticing. Are you moving closer or further away from your goals?

Sometimes we are so accustomed to our habitual ways of living that we simply cannot see the ceiling-- even if it's boxing us in.

We resign ourselves to a life that feels out of our control and we play victim to external forces.

Whenever you find yourself yearning for something different, something more, sit up and take notice. Your discomfort and unhappiness are signaling you to take a deeper look.

Within those inner calls for something new is probably a self-created ceiling.

When you recognize that you are feeling constricted, you are a step closer to freedom.

Dare to be more

“I dare you!”

These are the words kids sometimes use to goad one another.

It might be like those famous movie dares such as retrieving a ball from the scary neighbor's yard or the ill-fated “triple dog dare” that resulted in one kid's tongue sticking to the school's frozen flagpole.

As you probably are well aware, dares like these can lead people to choices that are harmful or just plain foolish.

But a dare can also help you move beyond where you are and to a place where you never dreamed you could go!

You can dare to dissolve that imaginary ceiling and expand. Of course, this can be a scary undertaking and it might even feel like it violates a rule.

When you dare yourself to apply for that grant, quit your job and go back to school, ask an acquaintance out on a date or have that difficult conversation with your partner, you are taking a risk.

There are lots of unknowns and you cannot be assured of how it's all going to work out. It is up to you whether the risk of possibly moving closer to the dream life you have for yourself is worth it.

Perhaps you are 100% sure that you want to take the dare, yet that darn ceiling seems rigid and immovable.

The really wonderful news that you might not want to hear is that you are 100% powerful.

No matter what your current situation is and what your past experience was, you are ultimately the one who created the ceiling in your life and you are the one who can dissolve it.

Keep reminding yourself of where you want to be as you continue to open up to the fact that you can get there. Dismantle the beliefs that might be lending your ceiling strength and rigidity.

Your ceiling may seem to come down all at once, but chances are it will be a gradual process. Create room for expansion within your life one decision at a time.

So get clear about what you want and recognize the obstacles you've set in your own way. Then step out and be more-- I dare you!

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