Aloha. I am in Hawaii! I have two great passions in my life. Helping men re-write their inner story and storytelling. I am here in Hawaii doing the latter for a big paddleboard race serving them as a video producer. It’s really a gig I dreamt of having a long time ago. And then one day, I got to say “yes”. But I did not sit down this morning to write about how wonderful video making is and why I love this event (besides being in Hawaii), the reality is that it’s a lot of work, and when I come here I never surf, paddle or do anything like that. I am here to do a job and I tend to get really hyper focused into that pursuit.
In many ways, taking this gig 8 years ago forced me to face a lot of my inner workings. I lacked confidence. Because it was something I really wanted, I undervalued my time, my abilities and such. I was intimidated by the idea of the work. I felt I was not up to it. I was not good enough. In fact, at that time in my life this very concept of not being good enough, being found out, feeling like a fraud, was woven throughout the fabric of my life. I was muddling along with big dreams. But my fears were bigger than my passion and my drive.
I was going nowhere. Sure, things like this gig came my way, but my lack of confidence, deep insecurity, and inner shame about who I am and “what” I am just kept me from truly reaching for anything.
I felt like I was walking around confused. Like I had no clue what to do. And really felt like other people, especially men, had the keys to life and I had somehow been left out.
The honest truth? I never asked anyone for help. I was too scared of their judgement and that they would really see how flawed I was deep inside. So I kept doing what I was doing. “The story” kept driving a series of bad decisions, under valued jobs and in the end; the resulting depression really did me in. I could not bear the torture of feeling so lost, alone and confused. I asked for help.
This was the first step in a massive process I could call disruption. People are oddly predictable. We work in systems – relational systems, inner spiritual systems, worldview systems – my mind is an ecosystem of thoughts, ideas, emotions and feelings. These are triggered by various stimuli which my brain connects to events in my past. Most of these events are trauma based, shame based and generally not things that make me feel great about myself. This is the story. This is what I sold myself on for years – this is why I lacked confidence, felt like an imposter, never seemed to get ahead. This system or pattern of thinking is what needed to be disrupted. A therapist started this with a thunderous idea.. “What if that critical voice in your head is actually YOU trying to guide you somewhere else. What if you could tune into it as a positive force”. This started a long process of disruption. I will be honest, the work took years. Mainly because I resisted so many pieces of it. Dismantling an entire ecosystem that has been built up for decades is not exactly easy to do and not an overnight matter.
I finally met a coach who I jived with. Or perhaps I was just ready — at last — to just rip off the band aid and dig into this work.
Whatever the reason, what unfolded was a life changing disruption of my inner thought systems. Everything changed.
Disruption is a necessary part of the cycle of life. Everything in nature is cyclical. Circles and patterns are an important part of our world. Just as vital is the disruption of these cycles. A wild fire burns away old brush so something new can grow in it’s place. Here in Hawaii, a volcano is erupting and where most see destruction, some locals call it creation. Our perception of own disruption is just as important as the event itself.
If you want to change, if you want real deep, inner change with no looking back. Disrupt your pattern. What patterns and cycles are you currently just enduring? What are you tolerating? These cycles and patterns are the things that once disrupted, will clear space for the new. Stop doing anything your not passionate about. Stop living out of obligation and live out of choice. These two small (but yet difficult) disruptions will leave a permanent mark on your life.
I needed someone next to me telling me the truth and asking me the tough questions to help push the disruptive process forward. A really good therapist and coach accelerated this for me greatly. Even just a good, honest, trustworthy friend is better than you trying to just go it alone. In my experience it is really hard to find your way out of a maze that you created.