Remember those merry-go-rounds when you were a kid? Those spinning circular things on the playground that you would sit or stand on and others would run around pushing it faster and faster, while you hung on; fighting the centrifugal forces that wanted to throw you off?
They just kept spinning you faster and faster. You desperately wanted to get off, but you couldn’t plead with them to stop, or they’d tease you. You were afraid to jump off because you knew that you’d likely get hurt if you did. You just hung on and hoped they would get tired soon.
This is just like the vicious circles we find ourselves in, isn’t it?
- Searching for acceptance and approval from those around me – trying so hard to please everyone, failing, telling myself to forget it, but then turning around and trying the whole process again!
- Letting work stuff get to me; be furious with myself for letting it; vowing never again. Until the next time I take it personally and care too much.
- Wanting to be a perfect mom, wife, friend. Trying so hard to be. Then screwing it up because, surprise, I’m not Super Woman! Forgetting that, so then trying so hard to be her again.
- Eating healthy, keeping fit. Having one day off and deciding, well, “Obviously, it’s too hard to keep this up, so forget it!” Until the next time I realize I need to be healthier, and start the cycle all over.
It is so hard to get off these merry-go-rounds! They are spinning and spinning out of control! Forces threatening to throw you off; send you flying through the air. There is no one that can help you stop it. You just hang on and keep going around and around.
But there is no one spinning these. There is no one to get tired and stop pushing it so that it gradually will slow down and let you off. It will just keep spinning. Relentlessly.
What are we going to do then?
If we jump, it’s going to hurt. It’s scary to jump. The spinning is scary, but jumping is scarier. It’s hard to find that courage to jump.
But…we have to. We have to overcome that fear if we ever want to get out of that vicious circle. We have to let go. We have to jump for it and hope for the best.
We might break an arm (or a heart). We might hit our head (or have to figure out something new). We might hurt an ankle (trip and fall). We might decide to get back on again and start all over.
We don’t know what will happen. And we won’t know until we JUMP FOR IT. The not knowing what will happen is holding us back. We have to push past that fear of the unknown. Just do it. Take a deep breath, and do it.
It’s a hell of a lot better than staying on and wishing to be off. It’s that first step that’s the hardest. Nobody said it was easy. It sure wasn’t easy on the playground, and it’s definitely not easy as a grownup.