How We End Up Lost

how we end up lostWhen I was 15, I spent a night in the woods lost. I had not been paying attention, took a wrong turn, and by the time the sun had set, I had no idea where I was; and how we end up lost – be it in the wilderness or in our lives, typically follows the same pattern.

I believe for the most part all of us have an inner genius of some sort, that we are all bright in our own way. Yet, regardless of that, sometimes we wake up, and realize that “where we are in life” is not “where we wanted to be” not by a long shot. By not paying attention to life and to ourselves, I believe, is the greatest cause to how we end up lost in life.

One of my favorite quotes lately is from Lao Tzu. Whether he actually said it or not I do not know, but he is credited to have said, “If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.” To me that is how we end up lost – we don’t change direction, ever, and we end up god-only-knows where and it’s usually not good.

How We End Up Lost

Self-examination is a hard thing to do, it really is, and even more challenging than that is making the changes in life that we need to make to grow, to advance or to evolve. We fight the process because it is easier being the comfortable person that we are than to work to become the unknown person that we are capable of being.

Sometimes the maps we have for life are out of date and are no longer accurate and this is why it is so important to be able to think for yourself. Stop reacting on autopilot and become engaged in the moment. Take the time to figure out why you do what you do and if it is not working for you then have the courage to change it.

How you live your life is completely up to you. How you react to what happens in your life is up to you. You do not have to do what you have learned from TV, movies, magazines, friends, and family. You can break the cycle by refusing to follow the herd. Blindly following the herd is one of the greatest causes to how we end up lost in life.

Life is not meant to be lived passively and certainly not meant to be lived by not paying attention to where you are or to where you are headed. It’s never fun to wake up one day and realize that your life has taken some unpleasant turns and finding yourself lost out in the weeds but it can and does happen. When it does, you best be willing to get a little uncomfortable, do some work, do some growing, and get out of your comfort zone to get back to where you want to be. It might take some time and it might not be easy but you CAN get there.

There are many reasons as to how we end up lost in life, living with blinders on, not paying attention, not caring or by constantly insisting on living within our personal comfort zones. When you are always comfortable, you are not growing, and when you are not growing you are not living, and when you are not living your life, chances are it’s not you who is doing the navigating for your life.

And that is how we end up lost…

Andy Wooten M.A. Counseling – Certified Life Coach – Aspen, Colorado

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Photo By Andy Wooten 22 July 2013

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