Growing up, I loved getting big LEGO creations and following the directions to put them together step by step.
Even when I would make a mistake, resulting in taking it apart and going back a few steps to add something I had missed, there was fun and ease in the comfort of knowing all the steps were laid out and all of the pieces I needed were there.
These days, many things I love involve a similar “comfortable fun when I know all the steps”
– Traveling (using the GPS to see the list of all steps of the directions ahead)
– Hiking (looking at the trail map elevation and loop ahead of time)
– Cooking (although I am not a “need to follow the recipe” stickler, I love having everything I need and knowing what order I will do things in)
There is comfort and ease and security in knowing what the next step is.
But…life is not like building with LEGOs.
We cannot “look ahead in the directions” to see how (or when or with what/who) things are going to unfold.
We do not have a script or recipe or trail map or GPS to follow to give us the definitive next step in our careers, or in our relationships, or in our lives.
The good news? It is up to us to choose.
The bad news? It is up to us to choose.
There is always a next step. But why do we hesitate to take it?
– Being lost in the vagueness “I don’t know what I want, so I don’t know how to move forward”
– Being lost in the uncertainty “I can choose anything, but how do I know what is the right thing?”
– Being lost in the fear “What if my choice is a mistake?”
We have all been there at some point in some way: Totally. Stuck.
Feeling like you are going to crawl out of your skin if you stay where you are.
Feeling like you are going to crawl out of your skin if you make the “wrong choice.”
Taking the next step does not always mean DOing something.
Sometimes – more often than you would think – the next step is REST.
How many times have you said or heard someone say “I am just SO. TIRED.” amidst giving the list of all of the things that need to get done?
Yet how many of those times do we/they prioritize taking 10 minutes of pure rest before continuing?
Notice the judgments that may arise here – does the idea of prioritizing rest seem crazy, selfish, weird, a waste of time?
Invite yourself to explore whether that is how you truly feel – and/or whether that is how all of the generations that came before you have been taught to feel.
One of my favorite affirmation jingles to help me choose a new paradigm of living where resting is productive, helpful and necessary to every area of my life is: I rest I rest I rest I rest – When I’m rested I do my best!
“Ok, I will try resting. But what if the next step I take after that is a mistake?”
Your opinion is the opinion matters most in your life.
You get to decide what is a “mistake” and what is a necessary slowing down or back-tracking so you could receive a lesson, new learning, or a set-up to manifesting your desires.
Personally, I no longer believe in mistakes. Similarly, I do not believe in coincidences.
I practice choosing to view every event as necessary for my divine timing. As Louise Hay, the affirmation queen herself says, “I am always at the right place at the right time doing the right thing.”
Taking the next step feels easier when you practice and prioritize Self-TLC.
Takeaway Tool for Taking the Next Step: Self-TLC.
Self-TLC is Self-Trust, Self-Love, and Self-Care.
When you trust yourself, you turn the “what if I make a mistake?” to “what then? I trust myself to handle it!”
When you love yourself, you practice showing yourself unconditional love through every stage – stuck moments, back-tracking moments, and forward-moving moments.
When you take time to care for yourself, you are prioritizing recognizing and meeting your own needs in loving, patient, kind ways.
Where to begin? Start within! Using the affirmations:
I practice and prioritize self-trust. I am learning to trust myself more every day.
I practice and prioritize self-love. I am learning to love myself more every day.
I practice and prioritize self-care. I am learning to care for myself more every day.
Then get a list going of what would feel like Self-TLC to you.
Next Step Self-TLCs could look like: Taking a deep breath. Saying an affirmation. Asking for help. Reading a book for fun. Eating a nourishing snack. Washing your face. Reaching out to a friend. Writing down what it would look and feel like if you trusted yourself. Writing down a list of reasons you deserve your own trust. Planning set rest time (you can start as low as you want – 1 min, 5 min, then challenge yourself to set aside more and more as you are ready/desire).
We can’t know the steps of the entire unfolding.
We can cultivate our Self-Trust, Self-Love and Self-Care so we can choose each next step to best support ourselves and our desires.
You deserve your own trust, your own love, and your own care.