Living Life Backwards
During a coaching call, I asked my client, “Have you ever tried to walk backwards before?”
“What?!” he responded, surprised by the question. “I suppose so, when I was a kid…”
“It’s kind of silly, right? It’s a game children play. Walking backwards is really awkward. But believe it or not, that’s exactly what you’ve been doing.”
Let me explain. My client, Greg, is a planner and a master fixer. In fact, he is so detail-oriented and organized that it has earned him raises, promotions, accolades and the approval of his hard-working, self-sacrificing parents and of his own overly dependent family.
Long ago, Greg discovered that sharing his organizational skills and insightful solutions to problems garnered the approval he craved; he seemed incapable of earning that approval just by being who he was. The better he became at fixing things, the more he did for others, and the more entrenched this identity became.
But something inside of him fought this. Something felt out of sync.
In recent years, he began to question who he was, what he was doing and why.
During his coaching journey, we uncovered some fascinating secrets. Greg loves building things and tinkering. He loves spontaneity, adventure and “getting lost.” And he craves time for deeper, more personal connections and to “just be.”
Why were these secrets, you may ask? Because he previously considered all of these things to be frivolous and unproductive. They weren’t part of “the plan.” And they certainly weren’t what he thought was expected of him.
So I explained to him how he’d been living his life walking backwards. At a young age, he decided that he needed to be the organized one. Since then, he has spent his life trying to live up to this expectation he set out for himself. Rather than focusing on future goals and desires and catching up to them, he was still looking back to this old belief for guidance.
When we walk backwards, we can’t see clearly what’s in our path. Likewise, many of us get so caught up in the “shoulds”, “don’ts” and “have to’s” that we forget that our job is to move forward in our lives with joy and anticipation.
What belief from your own past has you walking backwards into your future? Are you feeling stuck and unsure of what is holding you back?
Take the Frame of Mind Coaching Assessment and schedule a call with us to discover how to stop living in the past.