Sometimes You Just Need a Map

Have you ever had one of those times in life when you feel completely disoriented, disconnected and disempowered…more or less LOST?

It’s like you feel paralyzed, with no idea where you are, how you got there, or where to go next.

These moments often come with a sense of confusion and fear that can turn into all sorts of crazy making.

You might find yourself making decisions you wouldn’t otherwise make, doing things you wouldn’t normally do, or emotionally reacting to things that typically wouldn’t even cause you to blink.

I actually think the time before Spring can put many of us in exactly this state.

This time between Epiphany and Springtime can start to feel extremely uncomfortable. Depression tends to escalate. We feel impatient. It’s as if nothing seems to be clear or work out.

We feel trapped in our lives. We. Want. OUT!

In my own experience I have found that I tend to feel so much calmer in these moments when I have some kind of map to orient me.

Maps are different from guidebooks or action plans. While a guidebook might give us step by step instructions as to how to do something, a map shows us where we are in space, the direction we need to head toward a certain desired destination, and usually a number of various ways we can choose to get there.

Maps don’t tell us how to get there, how long it will take, which route is the safest or easiest, or what we might encounter along the way. Sure, different routes might show us different towns we could travel through, or landmarks we could stop and visit along the way, but in general, maps leave the method of travel up to us.

While maps don’t give us the “how to” for the journey, what they do give us is peace of mind.

If you were lost in the woods, but recognized a landmark you were standing near, wouldn’t you feel SO much better just to know that you had a map with that landmark on it that could show you where you are relative to where you want to go?

I’ve come to see that this is the most significant part of the work that I do. I offer my clients a map. I serve as a guide and mentor to help them see where they are relative to where they want to go. Most importantly, I teach them to actually love the journey, while finding the unique route that works best for them.

Part of the work of using a map is that we have to be still for a moment to look at it.

If you’re driving from your home to a new destination and get lost, it’s pretty hard to open up the map and orient yourself while driving. Ok, in our modern world of GPS technology, you can keep going and just ask your GPS to get you there, but let me ask you something. Do you remember how to get back home when you use your GPS to get somewhere, or do you need to rely on the GPS to get you home too?

There’s something important about this as it relates to our soul’s journey.

If we don’t do the work to orient ourselves, choose our destination and path of travel, and determine how we’re going to get there, then we’re giving away our power.

We’re relying on outside forces to constantly tell us what to do.

And the worst part is, when we give that power away, we often end up feeling more disoriented than we were to begin with!

So what can we do about it when life doesn’t hand us maps for every situation we find ourselves in?

The most useful maps are those we have access to at any time and any place.

These are the maps that remind us of our connection to Nature. Believe it or not, you really do have these maps available all the time, and you know how to read them better than you think.

Let me give you an example.

Remember when I said that the time between Epiphany and Springtime can feel very uncomfortable?

You might wonder why I would say that, or what grounds that assessment.

To come to this understanding, I simply pulled out my “Rhythm of the Year” map, figuratively speaking of course. I started thinking about the time of year, and how so many people, including myself, feel this discomfort at this same time every year. Then I thought about where we are in the rhythm of the year, and what’s happening in nature.

Spring is a time of rebirth. This is when we see the seeds sprouting, the buds opening, the temperatures warming and the sun shining more brightly. It’s a time marked by a sense of balance of light and dark, equal day and night, with the Spring Equinox. It’s a time of emerging, opening up and “going forth.”

How does this relate to the discomfort?

If we think about the life of a seed, which will sprout in the spring, we can imagine what it’s like to be a seed during that time before sprouting (i.e. the time between Epiphany and Springtime).

During the winter, the seed lays still and quiet, soaking up nutrients from Mother Earth. As early February approaches, the seed begins to quicken. There’s some movement. During this time from early February to sprouting, the seed is undergoing massive transformation.

The seed begins to grow and crack, desperately wanting to emerge from the darkness of the soil to greet the light of day. The seed ultimately is completely destroyed in order for the sprout to emerge from the soil.

In essence, there is a death in order for the rebirth to come.

What we so often forget is that we are a part of Nature. This same thing is going on inwardly for us. We tend to feel restless, uncomfortable and even trapped. We want to emerge to the light of day, but cannot do it.

We too are experiencing a massive inner transformation, even a death, preparing us to emerge anew.

Most importantly, this process can only happen in its own timing. If one were to try to pry the seed open to help it along, the plant would not be born. It’s the same for human beings. We must honor the Divine timing for our own growth and emergence, no matter how uncomfortable.

Can you see how this awareness becomes a map to orient you?

In knowing that these uncomfortable, restless feelings are “normal” for this time of year, and that with inner commitment and strength to endure the discomfort there’s the inevitability of something new emerging for me, I feel more at peace with where I am. I’m reminded that it’s all absolutely perfect, just as it is.

This time of year, we’re striving toward the light, just as all of nature is. And remember, that light doesn’t come in one day. It takes time for the new light of the Equinox to touch all of Nature.

Easter, a day representing resurrection and rebirth, is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon following the Spring Equinox. The full rebirth doesn’t happen until this time, because not all of our our natural environment has yet seen the light of this “new Sun” of the Spring Equinox. The full moon is a symbol of the “full light” that shines such that Spring and rebirth can fully emerge.

So, if you’re still feeling some of this restlessness, know that with Easter coming later this year, there’s a reason for that! Take comfort in the knowing that your seed is still working its way to the light, and that the light is there waiting if you’re willing to keep striving.

In my awareness, I can find peace. In my peace, I can find greater awareness.

Awaken Your Inner Power,
Kim

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