Restlessness is the result of feeling anxious or bored. It is one of the most frustrating emotions you can experience. When you know something isn’t going right in your life, your mind cannot rest. Sometimes it’s easy to identify the source of your frustration; sometimes, it feels like a vapor or mist that surrounds you, clouding your path: you can’t put your finger on it, but you feel it’s presence.
Cultural values and belief systems are a double-edged sword. They can provide inspiration and support, or they can diminish your light within. You may have been told how to behave, what job/degree you should have, who is acceptable to fall in love with or marry, etc… from an early age. This advice may have come from your family, your religious upbringing, or the world community at large. As you grow deeper into your own person, you may be questioning the cultural beliefs and values you once held faith in.
Going within to address feelings of restlessness requires courage and support. You know deep down something has to change. And you know the change you need will not come from outside influences. It can only come from within.
How do you begin to peel away the layers and frustration? How do you keep those cultural values you believe in, while adding your own personal beliefs and desires, resulting in a feeling of wholeness and living your best life? It can feel scary to dig deep to the source of your pain and frustration. Vulnerability and truth are like the scar tissue beneath our wounds; exposing these emotions requires that you replace anger and frustration with compassion and forgiveness. First, of self; then, toward others.
Rituals such as meditation and dedication to self-care can help lead you to this truth. So can a mentor or coach—someone you can trust to help guide you out of your fear and into your light.
My coaching clients often first come to me during times of frustration and uncertainty. You are not alone in your restlessness; we all feel this at different stages of our life. The restlessness you feel is your mind/body/soul telling you it’s time to “level-up”. It’s time to make a change and honor your gifts, love, skills, freedoms—creative, personal, financial. It’s time to make a turn down the path toward greater fulfillment and happiness. As a coach, it’s an honor to help others see that path; to help them clear away the brush and obstacles standing in their way.
There are tools you can access at any time; practices you can put into place to help you discern what the source of your restless is. Self-Care is essential during this process, for you cannot begin to make the changes needed if you are not first taking care of your mind and body. Simple tools of self-care include exercise, adequate sleep, nourishing food, plenty of water, meditation and spiritual rituals. Does this mean you have to run a marathon? Of course not. Simply take a that first walk. Does this mean you have to overhaul your diet today? No.. but substitute those fries for a salad every now and then. Identify ways you may be sabotaging your own growth through habits that no longer serve you. You don’t have to be a saint. Just remember a clear mind is a focused mind. And a focused mind can achieve anything.
Change is a dial, not a switch. Deciding everything must change right now is a set-up for failure. Taking small steps every day, clearing a little bit of that brush and mist away from your path, has the cumulative effect to where one day, you suddenly look up, and you can see the way.
Take some time today to make a list of what is frustrating you. This could include things such as your job, your relationship, family dynamics, your health, your un-tapped potential and creativity bubbling within; cultural beliefs you no longer want to adhere to. Then make a list of what your ideal life looks and feels like; what you need to shed to get to that place; what you need to say or do—to yourself, or to someone else—to get closer to this state.
If either of these lists are hard to create, and/or if you struggle with practicing self-care, consider reaching out to a support group, mentor, or personal coach. You were not put on this earth to live small, or feel eternally restless. We all need guidance and support. Harness your courage to go within, and release any fears of reaching out. Trust you will find your way.