So, last time I said I’d explain how life is like a kaleidoscope.
If you’re familiar with them, kaleidoscopes are way cool. With fixed parameters and a limited number of pieces, there are infinite pictures that can be created. Nothing added. Just a rearrangement of the parts, whether its with a big rotation or just a teeny, tiny shift.
So, with each turn, new possibilities are created as pieces fall into place.
I used to use this analogy when I was a consultant focusing on transformation/change management and motivating people to maximize their potential.
Here’s the deal: We each have different strengths and talents… and crosses to bear. And whatever the situation, we’ve handled it all and lived to tell the story. We may have done it with our heads in the sand… or faced things head-on… but however we rose to the challenge, we had it within ourselves to solve the problem, meet the deadline, confront our demons or rely on our faith, patience and judgment to just ride the waves of the tsunami until it all blew over.
I’ve heard the stories about the mom who suddenly could lift the back end of a car to get her child out from under it. Undeniably awesome. If I could have asked her the day before the crisis if she had the strength to lift the back end of a car, I’m sure she would have looked at me incredulously and answered with an emphatic, “No way!! I could NEVER do that!”
What you do doesn’t have to be huge. Remember, “lille bit by lille bit”.
Do a quick scan of things you’ve accomplished (or survived) when you thought at the time you couldn’t. Once you’ve given yourself a well-deserved pat on the back, do another scan of things that you don’t think you have it in you to do.
Then remember that your life is a kaleidoscope. You have all the tools, knowledge and determination to do what you want to do. It may take doing a 180, and, then again, you may just have to tweak your inner voice and give that kaleidoscope a wee little turn so that you get the picture you want to see.
Make it happen. Make new choices. Find the opportunities in the challenges. Give your kaleidoscope a turn or two and see the existing pieces from a new perspective. You already have what it takes – you just have to realize it, believe it, and live it.
That’s what I’m struggling with now. And it’s an ongoing process. I’m not saying that one day we can just stand up and say, “I can do anything, and, by gosh I’m going to do it all!!” I’m saying do one thing. Then do another. The rest will follow – you’ll build momentum. I’ve recently re-enrolled in continuing education classes at the School of Life and each day, whether unintentionally or by design, I learn something new or see something from a new perspective – my own kaleidoscope in action.
Sometimes I don’t get the picture I want right away, but I know that the more I keep discovering new ways to rearrange my pieces, I see incremental successes and am encouraged to see what else I can do that I didn’t think I could do before.