Soul food I ate this month:
1. LIFE LESSON: If you want to walk on water, sink your ships and burn your bridges. If you’re going to live an extraordinary life, get rid of your Plan B and start acting like Plan A is your only option.
When I’m following my heart, I have no Plan B, no just-in-case, no exit package. I barely have enough time for Plan A as is. I tell myself, if Plan A fails, Plan B will be inevitable. But until then, Plan B is a distraction I really can’t afford.
It may work well for other people, but in my case Plan, B is an impostor. It’s FEAR masked as caution. FEAR posing as responsibility. FEAR passing as adulthood, as seriousness, as wisdom. FEAR, plain and primal.
And I’ve already read this book: The moment I let Fear give me B’s and C’s and D’s in Life School 101, my territorial self-settles for less, pulled down by smallness like a magnet and I can’t give Plan A – my higher self – my all.
And then there goes another ghost of what I might have been, another chapter of how I Plan B’d myself into a corner. Yawn.
It’s not just me (or you) its default human nature: the tendency of going for the safest, settling option vs. unsettling expansion.
The problem with Plan B is that it “accidentally” unleashes a life, a love or a career not fully authored by your heartbeats. And that’s a kind of death, you know, but worse, just on the inside.
(No one can hear you screaming.)
Plan A is terrifying and excruciating, yes. No ground in sight when you first jump, but that’s when creativity can operate most freely and build your homes (and hope) on your way down.
That’s how you change, how you become the person that can carry out Plan A: by fully attempting it with everything you’ve got.
If I were God-dess, let me tell you, FEAR would be my idea of Original Sin. I’d throw people out of heaven, just so they can grow their wings on their way down and find out they are angels. “I told you-you were a god!” I’d thunder at them, “Now go and burn through art till you believe me.”
So as I’m both, goddess and fearful; the way I practice courage is by pushing myself into Plan A; by putting myself in situations where COURAGE is the only way out. By sinking ships and burning all my bridges to old self, so I am forced to find a way to walk on water… or I’m screwed.
You’d be amazed what creativity can do for you when it’s your only option.
Thank you, Cheryl Strayed