It is so easy to make the same choice over and over and over again.
Making a bold decision and stepping into something new is almost impossibly difficult.
Usually we have to be chased by something achingly painful – like a viciously unhappy relationship. Or deep physical discomfort. Or a job we hate that does not pay us enough.
And even then, how many of us cling to the old ways, as if there was some kind of salvation there?
It is way easier to cling to the pain that is known, rather than to jump to the potential discomfort of something new.
But. You know, as well as I do –
There is no better feeling than learning to expand into the woman you were born to become.
And there is no way to expand in a truly profound and meaningful direction that does not require making a decision when faced with the choice point: turn left or right? Keep going, or make a u-turn?
Today, I want to talk about that choice point, the line in the sand when you decide . . . or not.
Because this is the moment when women often get stuck in the formaldehyde of indecision.
Whether it’s what career path to follow, what guy (or gal) to date, whether or not to get married, get divorced, move across the country . . . or just what to have for dinner — I notice women have a chronically hard time making decisions.
We flip, we flop.
We doubt, we fret.
We judge, we disapprove.
We hate ourselves for our own indecision.
And then, we start the whole cycle over again.
We lose weeks, months, years, in indecision.
It’s one of the things keeping us small as women – and indecision is no more than a symptom of our disconnection with our power source, our turn on, and our truth.
Today I want to shine some light on the primary cul-de-sacs women find themselves circling – the patterns that keep us from making powerful, aligned, and life-changing decisions.
If you are stuck in indecision, in any area of your life, see if you can relate (and let me know in the comments)!
1 – We procrastinate and avoid the choice.
Putting it off, putting YOU off. “Maybe the timing will be better next year.” “Once I get to the bottom of my to-do list, I’ll take the time to explore this.” How many of us knew our relationship wasn’t working for years before we ended it? How many of us knew we were done at a job long before we got fired or quit? What might have been possible if we had leapt sooner? Could life have been sweeter? More true to the women we truly are?
2 – We try to “figure it out” and forget to FEEL.
Feelings are true. Feelings never lie. Feelings exist to promote and create growth. And yet all of us, as women, one time or another, have been told our feelings are wrong or bad or way too much. How can we begin to trust an aspect of ourselves that we have been warned against our whole lives? Of course our ego has to jump in and start to criticize, diminish and devalue the way we feel. We have been trained to deny our deepest truth since we first recognized we had one.
3 – We don’t give ourselves permission to choose what we really want.
Choosing what we really want is scary – it forces us to expand and grow, create and recreate. At a deep, basic level we have been trained to judge, refuse, and resist our truth. Sometimes, a huge desire will terrify us. If we have been single for a long time, and suddenly we wake up wanting to get married or have a baby – that can seem absolutely overwhelming. If we suddenly want to give up our high-powered career and write a novel – we could doubt our own sanity. We generally do not trust the veracity of what it is we desire.
We have been saturated in rampant lack of permission to want what we want. Rather than stay in the flowing waters of desire, we sink into the muck of ‘how’? The biggest block between a woman and her desire is when she gets all of her thinking mired in ‘how’.
4 – We look for answers outside ourselves.
We feel like we have to get permission from Daddy. Or Mommy. Or the stand-ins for those folks, like our partners or our boss. We run to “Honey, should I do this thing?” versus “Honey, there is this amazing thing I am longing to do – can you help me figure out how?” We have absolutely no training in how to source ourselves and our nearest and dearest from the clarity of our desire. It is time for us to enroll others in support of what it is we want, and to teach everyone in our world to conspire with us.
5 – We isolate.
Even though we seek opinions from other people, we rarely receive the deep support and witness required to make a solid decision that is serving our highest truth. If I ask a woman who continually compromises herself if I should continue to compromise myself, what portal do you think she will hold open? Women need other women who are committed to living their desires, to inspire us to live ours. We need women who are continually opening new doors for themselves, to inspire the opening of doors in ourselves. We need community like we need oxygen.
6 – We’re really comfortable with settling and suffering.
It’s easy to live a miserable life. It takes no courage to live a mediocre life. Do nothing, change nothing, and you will have a mediocre life. But a glorious life – a challenging and creative life – requires risk. There is profound discomfort in shifting. But there is nothing so powerful and courageous as a woman standing for herself, and pirouetting across a new dance floor. And you know what? You don’t have to have one dance lesson to pirouette. You just have to have the urgency to grow a tiny bit more than the inertia to stay the same.
In the comments below, I’d love to know — where are you in the indecision loop in your life right now? Which of the patterns above resonates the most? Or, if you’ve moved through resistance and made a powerful choice — what helped you get there?
Regena Thomashauer, aka “Mama Gena”
The School of Womanly Arts
Regena is a feminist icon, a teacher, a speaker, a mother, a best-selling author, and creatrix and CEO of The School of Womanly Arts.
P.S. This week’s post was inspired by all the women who have recently walked through indecision and found their truth around joining us for Mastery this year. Thank you for reaching out and following your courage.