Here’s something you may not know. (I didn’t.) You are allowed to change your mind.
Even if you’re knee-deep in a project, heart-deep in a relationship, monetarily or emotionally invested, or getting outside encouragement to keep doing the thing.
You are allowed to quit. You are allowed to listen to that voice that says, I thought this would feel different. The only permission you need is your own. Nobody else has to live inside your life.
Be smart, be considerate, but be brave.
I used to have a bad habit of sticking things out because they worked for other people, even if they didn’t work for me. I betrayed myself again and again because it was easy. Until it wasn’t.
The times in my life I felt despair, dealt with depression, fatigue, brain fog (oh, the copious amounts of brain fog; I swear someone set up a fog machine inside my head), sinus issues, miscarriage, ovarian cysts, mono, migraines, months-long sore throats, blah blah blah, can all be connected to (with the help of a little journaling) the betrayal of myself. The loss of my voice. Working where I was not meant to work. Saying yes to places I did not want to be, events I did not want to go to, conversations that felt all wrong. Putting all my passions up on a high shelf. Not listening to my body when it screamed at me. Answering the question, “What do you do, Lindsey?” with arbitrary meaninglessness. Working an MLM business with nothing to show for it, giving health advice and posting chirpy memes while staying up all night with a colicky baby and drinking too much wine to cope with hardcore sadness. Not saying “I write” because I don’t get paid to write.
Something happened this year. I quit all the things that make me sad. Inauthenticity is overwhelming, but so is DEFINITIVE authenticity. Like, “I’m Lindsey and I like green juice and indie music and kundalini yoga and tribal necklaces.” That stuff is true, for a minute. But I’m always in flux and I don’t want to be held by labels. Sometimes I go on a yoga hiatus, and put my juicer in the closet, and listen to old jazz, or whatever…and rather than feeling guilt, I should feel expansiveness.
Because we are all the possibilities. We don’t have all the possibilities, we literally ARE all the possibilities. We can be different every day, and maybe we should. Certainly we can change our direction from time to time, try new routes, check out the scenery. We do not have to be so damn committed.
The great truth is that our bodies brilliantly communicate with us, via our depression and dis-ease and malaise, that what we are doing isn’t serving us or our children or the world. What’s revolutionary? Listening to that wisdom.
IT’S OKAY TO CHANGE YOUR MIND.
Changing your mind and trying scary things and quitting the illusion of safety breeds an incredible quality: resilience. And as my sister and I like to say about our very favorite people, and about ourselves, being #resilientasfuck is beautiful and magnetic and a vehicle for seeing more of those possibilities within ourselves AND outside of ourselves. And there is so much to see.
PS> In keeping with my feelings about our human right to change our minds, I changed the name of this blog. Wild Zen Soul, when I created it, felt so right. My mission was to write about finding the place between peace and inherent wilderness. Analog & Atlas is what speaks to me right now, for a few reasons. The words themselves are big and profound and meaningful to me, as they relate to a couple of projects I am working on right now, and seeing the words up on the header makes me happy. Also, I love the analog idea of old-school connection and the atlas idea of following your own inner wisdom, so there’s that. <33 But, like everything, the name is flexible and resilient and subject, at any wild moment, to change.