Middle of the Road, Comfortable but Deadly to Your Dreams

September 11, 2013 Emotions and Thought

middle of the roadThe middle of the road can be a very comfortable place to be in.  It is the status quo of emotions. The shifts between hope and disappointment in the fairly regular swing of a gentle pendulum.

Henry David Thoreau described it thus: “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.”

How can a place of quiet desperation also be comfortable?  We learn, that life is about worry, disappointment, some contentment and a bit of hope.  We believe that in achieving a certain level of material comfort, a certain level of health and avoiding catastrophe that we are doing ok.  The dreams we had as young people are pushed further and further into the deep recesses of our mind as we become like hamsters on a wheel of daily life.

The Beliefs that Drive our Thoughts 

A few years ago Malcolm Fraser said that “Life wasn’t meant to be easy.”   Most people believe that statement. You have to work hard for your money.  Work is a drudge that you do to earn the money you need to live.  Pleasure and fun are squeezed into weekends and holidays.  Sickness is inevitable.  Age determines your well being and what you can do.  Rich people are all crooks and people on welfare are lazy and possibly drug addicts.  The list could go on and on of the many beliefs that people have that are so much a part of ‘who they are’ that they do not question them.

A lucky few who do experience catastrophe, ill health or loss do question and manage to break free.  Why wait for something catastrophic to question your beliefs and how they drive your thoughts, emotions and therefore the life you live?   Malcolm Fraser only gave a part of the quote.  The original is from George Bernard Shaw and it states

 “Life is not meant to be easy, my child; but take courage: it can be delightful.”

A nail is driven out by another nail; habit is overcome - ancient Dutch philosopher Desiderius Erasmus quote printed on grunge vintage cardboard

Habits of Thought

It takes 21 days to change a habit.  In the scheme of a life-time that is not long at all and yet the work involved in being aware of your thoughts and taking the time to change them seems impossible.  We are comfortable in our grooves as most of us find change very stressful.  What we find most stressful about change is the fear of either success or failure.  We fear humiliation or rejection if we fail, and we fear we are not good enough to succeed.   It takes courage to take the first step, of looking at our beliefs and changing them.

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.  – Eleanor Roosevelt

For many a certain level of contentment, of sticking with what they know is enough. As a friend once said to me ‘ordinary is good’.  For those who yearn for something more, who have dreams they wish to achieve, who believe that life is not about contentment but joy then the first step upwards is to be aware of the middle of the road feelings. To look at the beliefs that drive those emotions and to commit to taking 21 days to change the habit of thought.

If you want to know more about habits of thought, how they are created and how you can change them then please leave your name and email address below and I will send you a FREE guide.

Love and Light

Maryanne