A lot of my clients are surprised to find that their loved ones, upon hearing that they’re working with a coach in order to attain their wildest dreams, aren’t too supportive. While a few of their friends and family show some interest, others seem to attack the fragile dreamscape my client has been building with their own reality saboteur:
Can you even make money doing that? How will it impact your family? Is that really the wisest choice in our current economy? Who are you these days? I feel like I don’t know you anymore.
And on, and on, and on. Does this sound familiar? Here are you are, so incredibly excited to share with the people you care most in the world that you have finally figured out what can make your heart sing, how you can show up as the most authentic version of yourself, what you were made to be in this world. And you get that response? It’s like they’re actively throwing ropes across the basket of your hot air balloon, determined to keep you from floating off into the unknown without them. It’s soul crushing.
But here’s the thing. Your loved ones love you. They want to protect you. They want to make sure you’re safe… by their standards. Pursuing your heart’s longing can be a treacherous journey full of twists and turns, ups and downs, with numerous disappointments, and magnificent wins. To them, it’s a battlefield, and you’re somebody that they love and care for. Of course they don’t want you launching yourself head first into a new world of possibility and risk. They’re worried you won’t come home, that you’ll be forever changed, or that you’ll fail. And this doubt, especially from the people you love, is enough to keep any hot air balloon on the ground.
So what can you do?
You remind yourself that fighting for your fulfillment can, and undoubtedly will make people uncomfortable. As you’re transforming your life, you’re beginning to transform theirs as well. Of course they’re clutching to the person you used to be. You changing thanks to your newfound hopes and dreams means that they too can change thanks to their hopes and dreams and for some people, that thought is absolutely terrifying. Because if you go after what you want than there’s no excuse to hide behind anymore. Their concern is out of love but it’s also out of trying to keep you as the person they know, as the person who fits a specific role in their life. Remember, you don’t have to be that person. In fact, it’s your duty to your most authentic self not to be.
You remind yourself that your friends and family aren’t you. They don’t have your resourcefulness, your drive, and your dream. And they aren’t your saboteurs either. They’re not bad people or the bad voices in your head. They’re imperfect just like you; their life is changing before their very eyes so be sure to have empathy for the most terrified part of them. And then keep on your path.
You remind yourself that dreams are fragile at their infant stage. So protect them. Blow on the heat of your hot air balloon a little, weave your basket tighter, and then set off into the unknown knowing in your heart of hearts that it’s what you deserve.