As some of you might be aware, I recently returned from a three and a half month solo road trip across the country. Although I was never really clear exactly WHY I felt compelled to go wandering for an extended period, I knew something beyond my rational mind was inviting me to step into the unknown.
That, and I love challenge, adventure, and discovery.
Do you ever feel like that? Like this is the place to go now, this is the next step for me, and I have NO IDEA why, NO IDEA what I am looking for or what I will receive (if anything)?
I have periodically felt these impulses, and it can be disorienting, because it challenges my ego mind to say “yes” to what I don’t understand. But I have learned that when I do trust in something that is calling me from within, I am never disappointed. And so it was with this trip.
So much transpired that cannot be adequately put into words, but I had many weeks of contemplative silence, connecting with the beauty of nature, following my internal rhythms and slowing down a lot. I was also able to work remotely, visit Pathworkers all over the country, and volunteer my time at a refugee hospitality center on the border in El Paso. The Pathwork people I connected with across the country offered me gracious hospitality, an understanding of the twists and turns of the spiritual journey, and lots of support, love and prayers.
I returned with a renewed zest for life, and a real commitment to consciously and intentionally connect with beauty and presence in my everyday routine. I feel a deeper connection with my essence, and it fills me with gratitude.
Without question, it was Pathwork that taught me to trust leaning into the unknown. Pathwork gave me the tools to question the fear that wanted me to change my mind before I even began.
Many people remarked what courage I must have to travel as I did. And it’s nice of them to say that, but really, it didn’t require courage at all. Once I said yes to the journey, once I got behind the wheel and started down the road, there was no fear, so courage was not required.
Prior to that, It took some courage, and quite a bit of discipline and willingness to hold the negative voices in my head with compassion and gentle firmness. I was experiencing how fear can be a trick of the lower self to convince me to say no to my deepest need and longing, rather than a genuine response to real danger. And I called its bluff!
So instead, the trip was less about summoning courage and more about opening to wonder, awe, pleasure, and peace. It was about going with the flow, letting go of knowing what would happen in any given moment, and the delight that came from that surrender. It was about spending time alone, and falling in love with being my own best company. It was discovering that home was not four walls in some suburban city that I paid a mortgage on, but a sense of being at home with myself, a place that did not depend on where I was located.
All these gifts were possible because Pathwork has taught me to listen to and respond to my inner guidance. And that guidance, what I call my inner teacher, keeps opening up new vistas for me all the time. I do, however, have to continually say yes to it. I have to repeatedly be willing to step out of my comfort zone, keep seeing through the disguises of my lower self.
And I’m here to tell you: status quo, comfortable and predictable is boring. It is life-sucking. It is joy killing.
You may never have any desire to take a solo road trip, but If you deeply listen within, you will eventually hear a voice beckoning you to expand your horizon in some way. You may hear lower self voices disguised as fear or practicality, guarding the gate to the adventure that awaits you. I implore you to seriously question those voices.
Go ahead. Just do it. Say yes to your heart’s longing. You won’t regret it.
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So beautiful and inspiring, Beth. Thank you!
Thanks, Elaine! I know you know well the adventure of long term travel.
Thanks Beth, your testimony is encouraging <3
Thank you, Rodney! I have been fortunate to have been encouraged by many to step out of my comfort zone and the rewards are so great.
I enjoyed reading this and enjoyed watching your postings as you traveled. I certainly too feel that calling, however the ride thus far is very bumpy & painful. But something I feel I need to go through and see it through. In the short time I have known you, I have learned a lot. I sure will miss you here in Richmond. Thanks for coming into my life, and I wish all the happiness our world has to offer.
Love to you, Richa, for the bumps you encounter along the way!