Roadblocks & Detours in Life
When life throws you a roadblock, it is time to look for the detours. There is almost always more than one way to get from point A to Point B. The problem is we usually have our blinders on and are so accustomed to our typical road home that we never see the myriad of other options. When we think the same way again and again about something, our brain actually constructs a neural pathway for us to follow time and again. It actually takes cognitive intention to choose and take a different path. But we CAN do so. And even if we ultimately decide our familiar road is the best choice, it is wise to make a conscious effort to be open to and looking for opportunities, options and alternatives. This blog post talks about a few reasons why this is a good idea and reflects on a few personal stories that support this prerogative.
Is Doing Nothing the Right Choice?
Sometimes doing nothing is actually the best choice. I’ll start with a simple and somewhat silly personal example for this one, but it has actually saved me a lot of time in recent months. I used to rather like wearing my hair in soft waves. To do this required me to first blow my hair dry after washing it. Then I would use a large barreled curling iron to add in the volume, texture and waves I was looking for. It took each of these steps. Or so I thought. Recently I came across a hair product for curly girls and knowing my hair did have at least a little natural wave to it, I thought I’d give it a try. In the process of learning about how to use the hair product, I found out that all I really needed to do to get the soft waves I was looking for in my hair was nothing. That’s right, instead of combing, drying and curling after washing, I could simply towel dry my hair and maybe leave it up in the towel for a short spell and that’s it - not even running a comb through it. I often take a second or two to twist it up on top of my head in a messy bun when it is almost dry, but that’s as much time as I take these days. The waves that result from this method are a little different, but just as lovely and with so much less effort. Sometimes doing nothing is the right answer.
Keep Eyes Open for Opportunities
I’ll refer back to starting JMB Living for the next several examples because it is so front and center on my mind these days. I knew wanted to start a business where I could help people in some way many years ago, I just wasn’t sure where to begin. Early on I was fairly miserable with my chosen profession at the time and really wanted out. I could have taken another job doing something easier for a lot less compensation and that might have been the right choice. Yet I really felt I was supposed to create something to help people and decided to stay put and keep my mind open for opportunities of the best way to do this. For awhile I did a little personal coaching on the side and wondered if that was a path I should take. I got my yoga teachers certification and wondered if I should open a yoga studio. Each time I really tried to listen from my heart to decide if this opportunity was the right road to take and it wasn’t until I had the idea for JMB Living that I knew deep down that this was the journey I was meant to embark upon.
The other thing to watch for in the form of opportunities is the right people to join you or assist you along your route. When I think of the people that have helped me bring JMB Living to life, I feel incredibly grateful. We are getting ready to release a beautiful product that is a cross between a planner, a journal, a magazine and a personal coach all in one. The help and advice from my husband, daughter and friends has been absolutely essential to creating this product. And the photographer/art director/graphic artist who took the ideas and content I compiled and turned them into a product even more beautiful than I had imagined and communicated was so critical to bringing this product to life. I had originally thought I could do that work myself - boy, would that have been the wrong choice. Be open for opportunities for the right path and the right people on your journey.
Sometimes There are Things We Need to Learn Along the Way
Had I known I wanted to create JMB Living and the JMB Living Journal years ago when I was miserable at my job and left to do so at that time, I wouldn’t have been ready. There was so much I needed to learn through my struggles in that position that helped prepare me for the potential for success today. I’d had little experience with negotiating with vendors back then. I’d had little experience managing a big project. I was just beginning to understand and get an appreciation for mindfulness. There were people I hadn’t yet met. Sometimes when your current situation in life is challenging, it can be helpful to take the perspective that the lessons you are learning through this discomfort may be absolutely essential to success or happiness in the future.
There is Beauty and Joy on the Backroads.
Quite often the backroads are incredibly more scenic than the interstate highways. You might get from Place A to Place B a heck of a lot faster, but the sometimes the beauty of a backroad is worth the extra time. Before I started JMB Living, I partnered with a dear friend I met through yoga teacher training on a delightful side hustle. We created Travel to Transform about five years ago to lead wellness retreats in beautiful, a-little-off-the-beaten-path locations around the world. I have so loved the places we explored on each retreat, but it is the friends we made along the way that I cherish the most. Had I jumped right in to JMB Living years ago, I never would have met these women that feel like sisters to me today. What a missed opportunity of joy and beauty in life that would have been!
I’ll wrap up this post by circling back to the beginning. Taking a road less traveled by you may take a bit of effort. It may take you intentionally slowing down enough to consider which path your soul really wants to take. The path made be difficult, with lots of potholes to learn from along the way. But it may be oh so sweet when looking back at the everything you picked up along the way. Wishing you ever so much joy in your journey. Julie