July 28 2016 | by Calum Creasey
Ready to switch gears?
I believe that as humans we inherently fear change, the breaking of daily routines or directions in life. Changing our diets or habits that have stuck with us since childhood can be terrifying. Yet we also value the positive effects that new frontiers can bring, and the excitement we feel at the brink of the unknown is riveting. There is a special kind of happiness that comes from introducing greater variety into all aspects of our lives. Some of us are far more used to change than others. This is not necessarily a negative thing — how we adapt and visualize the unknown is part of what makes us who we are.
I like to define my life in chapters of time. The period of transition from the current chapter to the next is often the most exhilarating part of life. This might be the last few days before leaving on a vacation, or the weeks leading up to a big change in career. They can be whirlwinds of emotion, filled with self-doubt that make me question if I’m doing the right thing, or if this is the right direction to take. But it’s all worth it for the moments of pure excitement at the thought of the rewards that the new path might bring.
I recently returned to the UK after a three month trip around Europe. Now that I’m back on home soil I look to the next chapter. Where do I steer my life next? When faced with tough choices, we try to weigh the pros and cons of all of our options, and soon come to the realization that there isn’t one option that holds all of our wants and desires. Putting pressure on ourselves to pick the “right” path is useless. We constantly stand at a crossroads with almost infinite paths leading from it that change every minute of every day. Some paths provide lessons that make walking others easier. Still others branch into the unknown. The path metaphor has strength as it helps us visualize life not in constant motion, but in varied steps and pauses.
I was given a key piece of advice a few years ago by one of my University Lecturers. He said that, “Paths we tread too often can soon become ruts, and some day deep valleys, that hold us back from seeing the world.” This has stuck with me and helps me when choosing where to place my next step.
Change is powerful, and we should embrace it with open arms whenever it happens to pass by.