Driving through the city the other day, I decided to turn off my music and drive along in silence, prompting me to observe my surroundings a little more and watch the people walking along the city streets.
At stoplights, I really enjoyed observing the people at crosswalks. There's something about the crosswalk - it's a common clip in movies, where characters are walking on a busy city street, and crossing a crosswalk. It's often at a moment where a character feels totally trapped, or totally free, or has a life-changing moment (that may or may not involve being hit by a car).
A crosswalk is really one of those places where we have incredible freedom; we can let our feet take us anywhere we choose.
As I observed people from my car the other day, I began thinking to myself how free everyone looked; yet I doubt most people actually felt that way.
A lot of the people I observed walking freely on the street, able to go wherever their feet might take them, in reality probably don't feel very free. From my experience in life, I know a lot of people actually feel quite trapped in their lives, or they feel stuck.
Whether it's our job, our relationships, our finances, our responsibilities, etc. most of us have good reasons as to why we don't feel very free. Looking at life from a birds-eye view, however, one can see that we clearly ARE free. Those of us living blessed lives in the "first world" all have 100% free will & the freedom to choose in our lives.
We have this tendency as humans to take away our own freedom.
It is then liberating to be reminded we actually have ultimate freedom in our lives.
That isn't to say we should all just pick up & leave to go travel the world (although we totally could); many of us have responsibilities that are very real, such as taking care of loved ones. However, even with different responsibilities, the choice of where we want to let our feet take us is always there. By recognizing this underlying freedom in all we do, we can then bring the wondrous feeling of freedom into our lives no matter what is happening in our life!
Here are some tips to help you do that, and to take back the freedom you deserve for your magnificently brilliant (and one-of-a-kind) life:
1. Let go of OutcomeIt is often our attachment to certain outcomes that creates a feeling of being stuck, or trapped in our lives. For example, if you are attached to a friendship that isn't serving you, you might feel trapped in the relationship. If you are attached to receiving a pay cheque of $5,000 every month from your job, you might feel stuck in your job.
How would it feel for you to let go of attachments & have absolute faith & trust that everything will work out for you no matter what?
Would you feel more free?
Here are a couple of mantra's that have done wonders in my own life and helped me to feel totally free from outcome:
I let go of fear & doubt, and step into the realm of faith & trust.
I cast my burden out to the Universe, and I am free.
Shift into a space of faith & trust right now, and you will immediately feel more free.
This is where having a God, or believing in a greater loving power in any sort of way, comes in handy!
2. Remind yourself: we could all die tomorrow.Take a moment to zoom out on your life. Observe yourself reading this article from above where you are, then zoom out and observe where you are from the sky. Continue zooming out until you can see the entire Earth from space. Then imagine what different people are doing all over the world, and feel yourself grow less & less significant.
Remind yourself: everything could change tomorrow. In fact, everything could change in a few seconds. A giant comet could hit the earth and we could all die.
In that context, notice how small your problems feel. Notice how all those things that make you feel trapped are not even real or probably even that significant.
Do you feel more free?
3. Watch your words.Honestly, I think a lot of us have a belief that we need to be miserable & suffering in some way, because that is just a part of life, and if we were totally happy, something would be wrong with us or perhaps we wouldn't be motivated to move forward (even though that's totally not true!).
Even while being aware of this pattern in my own life, I definitely still fall into this way of thinking often.
It's a way of thinking that is societal -- listen for it in your day-to-day conversations.
How often is the conversation directed towards what isn't working, what is wrong, what could be better, etc.? How do those kinds of conversations make you feel? What kind of conversations would a person who feels totally free have? What would they focus on?
My guess is those conversations would be a lot more positive, focusing on what opportunities & possibilities there are for life, rather than the constraints & limitations that may or may not exist.
Focus on having THOSE kinds of conversations, and watch your thinking and your feelings change as a result. Observe yourself feeling lighter & more free in your day-to-day life.
Next time you are at a crosswalk, or out walking, I challenge you to remind yourself of this:
You are totally free and have the ability to choose where your feet will take you.
Go forth with freedom.