Chapter 1- I was walking down the street. There was a hole whole in the sidewalk. I fell in. It wasn’t my fault. It took me a very long time, but I finally got out.
Chapter 2- I was walking down the same street. There was a hole in the sidewalk. I fell in. It was my fault. It took me a very long time, but I finally got out.
Chapter 3- I was walking down the same street. There was a hole in the sidewalk. I walked around it.
Chapter 4- I walked down a different street.
You may be chuckling right now, as I do every time I recite this story. We can all relate to it, having fallen into our own holes in life. We have all experienced getting stuck in a rut, stuck down at the bottom of a hole.
You know you’re in a hole when it feels like this. It’s dark and lonely, frustrating and even overwhelming. Down in the hole there’s a lot of blaming going on. We blame others, our circumstances, and even ourself. It seems like things are never going to change. We have failed. We are washed up and our potential is wasted.
Well, none of that is true. We don’t have to stay stuck in our holes forever. But how do we get out of them?
The holes we find ourselves in, regardless of who is at fault for us getting there, are actually safe havens for learning. It’s in the hole that we can really see what we are made of. We can see the good, the bad, and the ugly. It’s in the hole where we can learn. Personal responsibility rises up on the inside of us and growth happens. The reality is that we remain in the hole UNTIL growth happens.
This has been a year of learning for me. Boy, have I been growing. That’s another way for me to say that I have been in a bit of a hole in one area of my life and I have experienced all that I described above- the darkness, loneliness, frustration, blame, and even self pity. “It wasn’t my fault. It was my fault. Things are never going to change. I’m running out of time. I’ve wasted all my time. This is just the way it is going to be. Poor me.”
But, thank God for the amazing learning that comes from being in a hole. The longer I am there, the more I let go of blame and shame and the more personal responsibility opens up learning for me.
Personal responsibility is key in getting out of the hole. (And for me, in addition to personal responsibility, my faith in God has been critical.)
Little by little, I am noticing myself change, grow and improve. Learning is emerging and I am developing a strength that didn’t exist before. I am building resilience. Personal responsibility is carving out my path. I am finding my way out of my hole. When I have overcome, I know, I will look back at this time with gratitude for what it is producing in me and for me.
So, where are you? How do you relate to all of this? Are you in a hole? Or have you recently gotten out of one? What are you learning? And how do you get out of your holes in life?
No matter where you are, I want to encourage you that nothing lasts forever. The challenges in our lives show up and they teach us so much and then they pass. So, whether you are in a hole or far from one, take hold of personal responsibility as your guide to growth and learning. Keep your eye on your vision, on where you are headed. Our days and our lives will just get better and better when we do that.
Make this a great week!
With Love and Volition,