“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves”. ~Victor Frankl
Change can often take courage. Today I was reminded of a story. The story tells of a bear who had spent all the days of her life in a cage, pacing up and down in an area, 3 metres square. Many years went by, and one day the keeper died and the door was opened. The bear was set free.
But the bear did not run away and enjoy her new life of freedom in the wilderness. She spent the rest of her days pacing an area, 3 metres square. She had learned to live within the boundaries. She had no reference, no guide, no vision for what opportunities may be beyond. She was bound by her mind.
We are very much creatures of habit. Some of who we are is possibly genetic but we learn from our upbringing, our parents our situation, education and our culture the "correct" way to behave and act. We are influenced by others; "Don't climb that tree in case you fall!", "Rich people are pompous idiots!", "Sail round the world? Why would anyone want to do that?".
We also place limits on ourselves, based on the media, what we read, the company we keep, compounding life experiences, and beliefs and fears which develop over time.
For many people, to move outside of the cage we wait until it's enforced on us – such as a redundancy, a health scare, separation, divorce or a death.
But what if you were enlightened enough to be constantly looking outside the boundaries? Challenging your own perceptions and beliefs about what you are capable of doing and where you are capable of going and who you are capable of being?
What if you took baby steps, and then great strides away from the cage. Could you reach the horizon? And what is beyond the horizon?
You have a choice. Will you be the bear, pacing 3 square metres for the rest of your days? Or the bear who ventures far and wide seeking greener pastures, warmer climes, the freshest water, the most beautiful vistas?
Change coaching can help release you from the boundaries of your cage.