The Detour is the New Road

So often I encounter people who are struggling with changes in their life.  They have experienced losses and failures and they have veered off their original path.  Most times, people simply want to get back on track, which means going back to their original road. However, sometimes we need to accept that the road is permanently changed and we now need to move forward on the road we’re on. Why is that so hard? Why do we spend so much time trying to get back to the path? We are taught at a young age to pick a road and follow it to the end.  We ask children, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” as though they should know their life trajectory at 10.  We encourage them to get married and have children by a certain time.  There are countless images in the media screaming, “Look like this! Take this trip! Live this life!”. I believe that those types of questions and messages tell kids that they need to pick a path and stay on it.  We then take those messages into our adult lives and often times we find disappointment and dissatisfaction because we evolve but we try to stay on the same path despite our evolution.  I wonder what would happen if we asked kids “Who do you want to be when you grow up?” because that would be more about their character than their career and lifestyle.  If we focused more on our character we would be able to accept detours as lessons and necessary shifts that are making us more of who we are supposed to become. Take a moment to look back at all the detours you have experienced in your life.  How did they change you?  Would you be the person you are today without those experiences?  I know that so much of who I am now is shaped by the struggles of my life and if I had stayed on the original path, I would be a stifled, less authentic version of myself. I had to accept that the change was necessary and I had to trust myself and my belief system that things would work out in my favor ifI let go of the past and just started moving forward again on the road I was currently on.  So today, I encourage you to stop looking back at the old path.  Appreciate the memories, mourn the loss of the life you had, and then move forward with hopefulness and gratitude.  


“You need to have faith in yourself.  Be brave and take risks.  You don’t have to have it all figured out to move forward.” – Roy T. Bennett



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