If you’ve committed to your “impossible” journey, I can pretty much guarantee you that you are going to need some major social support in order to make it all the way to success. The reason I can say this with such confidence is pretty obvious – if this were an easy journey, you would have already done it, right? Challenging journeys require steadfast and fantastic support – people who will walk with you and hold the vision of this new you when you falter and fail. Think Sam and Frodo…yes, Frodo is technically the hero of story, but there is no way he would have even made it out of the Shire without a lot of help from his friends; the whole story would have gone to hell without Sam carrying him and the rest of the fellowship charging the gates of Mordor. (Aragorn’s hottest moment, by far. “For Frodo!” … so, so sexy.)
Our own journeys to our “impossible” goals can feel just as perilous as having Ringwraiths blasting after us on creepy black horses, and it’s these times where we desperately need people to walk with us, if only to say, “Ack! That is a seriously creepy horse; it’s time to run faster!” I’m speaking from experience here – within days of publishing my commitment to my own “impossible” journey, I was again curled up in the fetal position, snarfing peanut butter cups, muttering, “what the hell have I done?” Enter my own fellowship, who gave me a clear mirror and the knowledge that I was not walking into the pit of doom all by myself. Thank God for them! They are a fairly new experience for me, though, and a luxury I didn’t have until fairly recently. You might find yourself without the type of support you need for your journey – not that you don’t have plenty of friends, but you might not have the type of friends you need in order to make a leap from one version of yourself to another. In fact, even trying to do this might freak your friends out quite a bit – they have a vested interest in you remaining as you, after all. If you are currently finding yourself in a place with little support for the new vision of you, here are some ideas of how to go about finding some.
Gathering Your Fellowship
Ask for and Provide Support – the truth is that I’ve always had a fellowship, but I never knew how to reach out to them and ask for their help in keeping a vision for me. I’m betting you know which people within your social circles would be happy to help you…if you decide to take the risk and ask them. In turn, they might have their own journey that they need help with, but have been hesitating to ask for help. It might be worth finding out if this is true in your own life!
Go Virtual – it’s hard to imagine there is any interest or topic that does not have some kind of online group, ready and willing to help support you in your dream. I know this can sometimes feel like it’s “not real” enough, but it is not at all a bad place to start. You have no idea where it will lead you and what will come out of it. I’m a coach today instead of an accountant partially due to someone I met playing World of Warcraft – no kidding. Reach out and try something new – that’s what your “impossible” journey is all about, after all!
Join/Start a Local Group – if you live in a major city, you are almost guaranteed to have some kind of group at least tangentially interested in your journey area – meetup or craigslist are both excellent places to begin looking. If you are in a smaller location or can’t find anything similar to what you want to do… start your own! One of my former coaches did this with excellent results.
Find a Workshop – you might have to travel, but it can be well worth it. Many workshops offer some kind of post-event Facebook group support, and this can be invaluable. Even if they don’t, you might take the time and energy while there to connect with like-minded souls and start your own virtual support group afterwards.
Hire Support – hiring a therapist, a coach, a personal trainer, a voice teacher… whatever it is that you are trying to do, renting support in the form of a professional can be a beautiful thing. The person is there solely to help you get where you want to go, and sometimes having just this will do the trick.
If you have additional ideas about gathering your fellowship, or have had a positive experience with a tactic I haven’t thought of, please post in the comments! We can all benefit from your wisdom!
Leading Your Fellowship
Once you have your fellowship, you get to take on the next challenge – leading your journey. It’s a fantastic, amazing and purely joyous experience to have people who love you, want the best for you, and always have your back. Reach out to them, lean on them, listen to their advice…and remember that they don’t know your path – only you do.
My own journey to man magnetism has taken some odd and unexpected turns recently – I’m not ready to actually publish anything about them yet, so you’re going to have to take my word on this one. I’m bringing it up solely because it brought to light something I wanted to share with you. Sometimes, your fellowship will disagree with the path your taking. They might lovingly and gently point out the various reasons why the path is not the best, all with your best interests at heart. And here’s where things get interesting!
So recently, I’ve been thinking, “everyone thinks I’m a fool.” And unlike the situation from my last post, I don’t get to write off my “everyone” as being crazy, dead, or otherwise not worth listening to. In this case, my “everyone” is my fellowship, and they are phenomenal, amazing people who I love without reservation and completely respect their wisdom, opinions and experience. Further, I know they are completely on my side and want nothing but the best for me. And so I’ve been seeking their advice and taking it to heart. At some point, I realized I had stopped leading my own journey – I had succumbed to the block of “everyone thinks I’m a fool.”
How to handle this situation? I’m not going to tell you how to handle it in your case – it’s your journey, after all – but I will tell you how I handled mine. First, I did my work on what that “everyone thinks I’m a fool” was costing me. Second, I checked in with my own knowing…and confirmed that I’m on the right path for me, foolish or not. Third, I gathered my fellowship and asked them to hold my vision for me, even if it’s the most foolish vision on the face of the planet. Being the awesome people they are, they agreed. Right now, knowing they have my back even if I’m walking off a cliff, I feel like I could leap off and fly. And that, friends, is what I’m hoping happens for you. There is no better feeling in the world.
So how to keep this when you’re feeling shaky? I like to think of Sam, Frodo and Sméagol. Was Sam completely and utterly right to not trust Sméagol? Goodness yes, he was dead on and “everyone” could see it! Was Frodo right to trust his knowing that Sméagol was playing an important role in his journey and needed to stay with them? Yes, he was. Sometimes completely opposing views can both be right; our calling here is to hear everything, consider everything, and, in the end, follow that small voice that whispers in our hearts, leading us forward.