I often meet clients at the crossroads in life. It is an exciting and sometimes frightening place.
As a coach, I like to welcome clients to the crossroads, and encourage them to look not only at the view down multiple paths but within, so that they might notice who they are becoming.
As human beings, we live in a perpetual state of change and as we find ourselves at the crossroads it is time to take stock. To sit down for a while, to count our blessings, acknowledge our gifts and burdens, to rest, as we decide which path will take us on from here.
I have learned that the type of reflection that occurs at the crossroads will determine the sort of path that stretches out ahead of you. Anxious and limited thinking will likely lead you back to where you have already been. Expansive and mindful thinking, however, will open up the territories of purpose, vocation, creativity and joy. This is the field of your heart’s desire and your dreams.
I find myself at the crossroads quite frequently now as life takes me on a journey that I no longer choose or need to predict. I have learned to trust the unfolding, my inner voice, and the silence.
It wasn’t always so easy.
I left my career as a Barrister just as it was taking off – the words that precipitated my resignation came from a friend who jauntily remarked in the Inner Temple car park that he had heard I was one of the ‘rising stars of the civil bar’. I was 29, earning excellent money and about to extend my mortgage to the max and buy a house. It made no sense to leave the comfort of the status quo, but I had already been on the path of personal development for over a decade, and I recognized the resonance of truth in the impetus to leave.
After all, it became crystal clear to me in the car park that my star was rising in the wrong field.
I could have said no – just stick it out for a few more years, a few more cheques, a few more big cases, but that would have been fighting against the truth I had already acknowledged in my heart.
Over a decade later, people still ask me if I miss my old career. The answer is a clear no. I loved it then, but it was no longer the right fit.
When people say to me how brave it was to leave my hard-won success, I tell them it didn’t feel brave. When something is deeply true, bravery is not required. It is simply happening.
Is it time for you to make a change?
By Neil Seligman
Neil Seligman leads mindfulness retreats at Champneys Forest Mere – the perfect place to learn meditation and contemplate your big questions. Find out more at: https://neilseligman.com/events/
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