One of the biggest obstacles to getting unstuck, in my experience, is THEM. You know THEM–well-meaning friends, family, and all-purpose lovers of the status quo. The ones who think you are crazy when you tell them you are selling yet another house and packing up to move yet again (maybe to a city where you’ve already lived three times) yes–even though you’ve only lived there two years, yes–even though you have a good job, yes–even though you’ll lose money on that house. Or going back to school…again. Or (surprise!) having a baby at 42. Ok, that last one was one of my better moves.
It’s the side-eye you get from your mother when you say you are thinking of just throwing out all but 33 items in your wardrobe. It’s that judgmental over-the-glasses look you get from your son’s teacher when you say you are thinking of home schooling him. It’s the wary look your spouse gives you when you say you think you might give up your lucrative career to become a popsicle-stick artist.
It’s hard to battle THEM because most of the fight is in your head. I attribute a great deal to my husband’s single raised eyebrow. That eyebrow speaks volumes to me. In fact, it talks to me all night. It argues with me all day. And by the end of the day, I’m furious with the eyebrow. Or I’m resigned to believe the eyebrow is right. But 9 times out of 10, when I ask my husband for eyebrow-interpretation, he attributes some innocuous meaning for the raised eyebrow like “Wow, I didn’t even know you were a dog person.” Or he has no idea what I’m talking about. Or he confesses that he didn’t hear my question because he was wondering why people keep eating orange cheddar cheese when by now, everyone knows that’s not natural.
Here’s what I’ve come to realize. Although opinions are like ***holes (everyone has one), people aren’t really that concerned with what I do. Other people don’t spend vast amounts of their time thinking about me. What I do with my life doesn’t directly impact them (unless they happen to be married to me or my son). So while I can listen to their input, their collective input has to be given it’s proper weight–0.000427% of my decision-making factors.
And just like that, THEM (THEY?) don’t have the power they used to have over me. Don’t give people more power than they have earned. Don’t let them take up valuable real estate in your head. THEM are only a barrier to getting unstuck if you let them be.
Carpe THEM! I mean, carpe us…I mean carpe YOU!