Landlocked

I hate to admit this to you but it’s true. There is one day out of the year I know in advance that I am going to have a bad attitude. It may sound trite but it involves an annual event here in Phoenix where I live; it’s The Arizona Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon. Don’t get me wrong, I love fitness. I myself have competed in many races and fully support my friends and family who participate in the popular Rock ‘n’ Roll.

So why does this event get on my nerves every single year? I happen to live in an area that is blocked off for both the half and full marathons. First World problem, I know. Despite the festive atmosphere which features live bands and cheer teams to support the runners, in my mind all I see are barricades, closed roads, rescheduled church services, delays, detours, and cars backed up for miles. Circumnavigating exiting my neighborhood has always been a challenge similar to finding Waldo without the fun. Basically, I’m landlocked.

Detours

Most years I stay home till the race is over, other years I have even gone so far as to leave town and head to San Diego for the weekend. This year neither choice was an option. My son Rock had a flight scheduled the morning of the marathon so I could not stay at home nor could I escape to San Diego; I had to get him to the airport.

Thankfully, a friend of mine went online and mapped out a route for us to take. That Sunday morning, still embracing a bad attitude, Rock and I left for the airport. It was clear sailing for about a half a mile and then we found ourselves in an extended detour line.

The line was so long that at one point Rock told me that the navigation on his phone was telling us to turn right. Although the street to our right was indeed wide open, my gut told me to stay the course. I hesitated but in the end, I chose to listen to my gut.

Internal Navigation System

As it turned out, Rock’s phone navigation did not have the updates for the closures. Had we followed it, we would have found ourselves in an even worse bottleneck jam because the next major street was closed. The detour would have rerouted us and we would have ended up at least a mile further back from where we were.

What situation do you find yourself landlocked in? Are you:

  • Lacking clarity in everyday decisions?
  • Indecisive about relationships?
  • Questioning a career that’s unfulfilling?
  • A habitual worrier?

How in tune are you with your internal GPS system? Do you hear:

  • Your Mind
  • Your Heart
  • Your Gut
  • Your Spirit

Whatever situation you might be landlocked in, it’s time to ditch the bad attitude, find a roadmap to get out and hone your internal navigation system. In order to learn how to trust your instincts, you must first develop your own GPS system to help you be less reactive in life and learn how to make authoritative, confident decisions.

4 Faculties Hardwired into Your Internal GPS:

1. Your Mind

Reasoning is an essential faculty of your mind and one that has the capacity to process information and use rationale to draw conclusions. Your reasoning mind includes other factors such as perspective, imagination, and memory which also weigh heavily on the decision making process.

In decision making, your mind is wired to allow you to practice sound judgment, focus on priorities, and be effective at follow-through. In order for you to tap into your innate wisdom, your reasoning capabilities must be trained.

To Sharpen Your Reasoning Skills:

  • Choose a positive attitude.
  • Adopt a growth rather than a fixed mindset.
  • Use your memory to focus on past successes; not perceived failures.
  • Learn how to tame your Inner Gremlin; limiting beliefs that can deceive you.
  • Weigh the benefits and risks of each decision; counting the costs.

2. Your Heart

The heart is connected to humanity and is considered to be the seat of emotions and passions. To understand your heart, you must first understand yourself. Developing a discerning heart, based on self-awareness, allows you to choose which emotions are best suited to help you make sound decisions.

If you don’t learn how to control your emotions, you will live life from a reactionary state. Understanding and connecting with your emotions is vital to mastering emotional control.

To Sharpen Your Heart Skills:

  • Practice empathy by connecting with yourself and others.
  • Watch for emotional triggers that may derail your judgment.
  • Recognize what emotions you are feeling and allow yourself to process them.
  • Choose emotions that best serve the situation before moving forward.
  • Avoid making decisions rooted in fear or doubt.

Rita Hudgens Life Coach - Discover 4 Internal Allies to Help You Break Free3. Your Gut

Your gut, also known as your hunch, is below your conscious awareness and is the ability to understand a situation or thought instinctively. It is your intuition; your inner wisdom and inner knowing. Although many confuse intuition with a 6th sense, it is one of your mental faculties; it’s that sensation you feel when your gut is telling you something.

The more you consciously connect with your intuition, the greater the likelihood of you becoming deeply aware of its leading. Since truth tends to come from the gut, and if you sincerely want to increase your ability to hear truth, it’s essential for you to train yourself to listen to it.

To Sharpen Your Intuitive Skills:

  • Connect with your 5 senses: sound, touch, smell, sight, and taste.
  • Bring your mind to stillness; reduce distractions and outside stimuli.
  • Look at certain environments where your gut is relatively accurate: is your intuition stronger in task situations or relationships? Can you hear it more clearly professionally or personally? Practice listening to your intuition in all situations.
  • Keep the present as your frame of reference.

4. Your Spirit

The fourth powerful ally in your built-in navigation system is your spirit. The human spirit is resilient and has the capability to overcome adversity and thrive. It is designed to be curious, vision focused, and solutions–oriented. When it is on point, it is intuitive, innovative, and resourceful.

A resilient spirit is very optimistic and creates a compelling vision for the future. Inspiration, creativity, and openness are virtues and driving forces of a resilient spirit.

To Sharpen Your Spirit Skills:

  • Build a resilient mindset by facing your fears.
  • Pray in faith.
  • Develop the habit of reflecting on problems (solutions-focused) rather than ruminating over them (worry focused).
  • Look for opportunities to be resourceful.
  • Stay as curious as a child.

“Getting stuck is not a problem. Staying stuck is. Good learners practice getting unstuck.” – Unknown

Rita Hudgens Life Coach - Discover 4 Internal Allies to Help You Break Free - Transform University Life CoachWide Open Exits

As you can see, making confident decisions can be based on reason, intuition, or ideally a combination of the two; it does, however, involve training. The good news is that all of these faculties can be developed.

Teaching yourself to listen to your head, heart, gut, and spirit utilizes the exact same principles as going to the gym and training your muscles to grow stronger. The more you practice it, the more resilient they become.

Change occurs when you embrace a positive attitude and a determination to stay committed to the process. In my particular situation with the Rock ‘n’ Roll marathon, choosing to have a negative mindset greatly hindered me.

In addition to having a bad attitude, I also had a fixed mindset based on past memories of previously being stuck at dead ends. In spite of my bad attitude, I learned so many valuable lessons that day and realized that after all these years of thinking I was stuck, I actually had 2 options to exit my neighborhood; basically, I’m no longer landlocked.

So how many options can you find to exit your landlocked situation?

Instead of focusing on barricades, closed roads, delays, and detours, you now have a roadmap to help you break free of landlocked circumstances and discover the wide-open exits filled with opportunities you never knew existed.