Often, when we dream about creating more fulfilling lives for ourselves, what we imagine can feel so far from where we are now. Carving out space to explore and envision is a very important step, but then what? How do we begin to move in the direction of our dreams? How can we bridge the gap between where we are and where we want to go?
For years I dreamed about moving to Belize. After visiting for the first time in 2012, I fell in love with the nature, the vibe, the culture. While I wasn’t explicitly planning to move out of the States at the time, I knew I wanted to leave New York for a while and live in another country. I’d lived in Nigeria for some time a few years earlier, and doing that gave me the confidence that I could find a way to bring the experience of living abroad back into my life.
Still, there were logistics to consider. I was living and working in New York as a psychotherapist, in the process of building a private practice, and had just started a new relationship. My new love and I talked about living abroad and it was something we were both into, but life seemed to be taking up so much space that the conversation was put on the back burner.
In 2014, we visited Belize together. After spending a week in the country and extending our stay, we made the decision to move there within the next six months. What happened after that was literally a process of small steps and decisions which led to us living in Belize. Yes, there were some synchronicities and at moments it seemed like things magically came together, and there were also challenges and a lot of figuring things out as we went along. And now, two years into living in Belize, there are still things we’re figuring out, and the ongoing process of creating and building our lives.
What I want you to know is that creating a fulfilling life is possible for you.
That dream you have? It can happen.
That deep longing and desire for how you want to feel and experience your life? It is already yours.
We can move into the lives we desire by creating new paths.
Over the years I’ve learned that creating the life I want means being open to new ways of expanding and experiencing, and finding that sweet spot between feeling and taking action. By that I mean doing the personal work of staying connected to my feelings, needs and desires, as well as the practical work of grounding what I want into my choices and actions. Not quite manifesting, not quite planning, it’s an intuitive approach to living which I now know is a life-long practice.
Creating a new path in your life doesn’t always have to be about huge, sweeping changes. Sometimes it’s as simple as making space for an interest or project, or beginning a new practice. In my work with clients, I often focus first on helping them get clear about what it is they want to bring into their lives and figuring out ways to do that right now. As each step leads to the next, they discover that the path toward what they want is one they themselves can create.
Here are some ways to work with creating new paths:
Connect. How do you make contact with your heart and spirit? Knowing what next step you need to take toward your dreams begins with listening to yourself. Do this however works for you – meditate, pray, write, run, walk, yoga. Make it a practice. Make it uniquely yours.
Journal. Are you writing your dreams down? Take the time to get quiet and still, listen to yourself and write what comes. What do you envision for your life? Begin writing with the sentence “I am moving into…” and take it from there. Don’t censor yourself. Stay curious.
Choose. Sometimes we desire all the things. What is one thing you are burning to do, feel, say, create, change? Identify what that is. Choose one small part of it and make it into an action. Do that action daily.
Map. What needs to happen in order for your dream to be realized? Which parts do you have control over? What actions can you take toward that? Create a visual representation of that process, whatever it looks like for you – a list, a 3-month plan, a bullet journal, a whole wall of your home covered in pink post-it notes. Remember that the process will change and shift as you journey on your path.
Share. How are you speaking your path into existence? There is power and energy in declaring it so. Tell someone you trust about where you want to go. Be open to encouragement and support. Allow folks to help you.
Commit. Make your path a priority. Commit to the journey. Direct your energy and actions toward where you want to go. Hold yourself accountable with kindness and compassion. When you feel discouraged or unsure, connect and reflect. There is always a next step. Take it.
Need support and tools for creating a new path in your life? Think a guided goal-setting process might help you move forward? Want to work through fear and resistance and discover all that’s possible for you? I look forward to connecting over a session.