I’ve never been part of any group of people doing anything where there wasn’t at least one person who felt behind.
They hadn’t completed all the reading.
They hadn’t yet gotten their period.
They hadn’t been kissed. Or asked out. Or asked to dance.
They hadn’t watched all the videos or completed all of the lessons. They hadn’t even started any of the lessons, for God’s sakes.
bought a house
had a baby
landed their dream job
been to Paris
read War and Peace
learned how to cook
paid off their debt
started their business
hit six figures
lost the weight
healed the pattern
forgiven their mother
taken up the guitar
made their first million
I have yet to meet anybody who doesn’t feel like, at least in one area of their life, they should be further ahead.
Some days I feel behind in business. Some days I feel behind in motherhood. Some days I feel behind in my spiritual life. (Like I haven’t meditated in months, possibly years, for example, and I have so many friends who swear by it. Daily. So there’s that.)
But, let’s ask ourselves, shall we?
Where are we supposed to be, anyway, if not where we are?
Here’s the deal:
Feeling behind inevitably comes from having some idealized picture of what our lives should look like based on our age, experience, gender, position, or any other category we’ve put ourselves in and then finding that our actual life falls short.
I think we can all agree that there’s no “right” way to do life. So, therefore, there’s no place we should be other than where we are.
There’s no such thing as an ideal life. There’s just the life you live.
Could we have made different choices that would have landed us further “ahead” of where we are now? I guess, but I think it would be more accurate to say we could have made different choices that would have landed us in a different place than where we are now. Not ahead or behind. Just different.
And back-tracking to consider what would have happened had we not chosen what we chose is a unique form of self-torture that I don’t think is particularly fruitful – unless you’re using it to make a new decision in the present moment.
We will never stop aspiring to expansion. Our hunger will not cease.
There’s nothing wrong with some healthy dissatisfaction and a desire to change some things up in your life.
But we can choose, moment by moment, to stop beating ourselves up for being behind.
Being behind is impossible if we are living according to a set of rules that we’ve defined (and given ourselves permission to update as needed).
If there’s no ideal way to do anything, there’s no way to be ahead or behind.
You can only be where you are. And the best way to be there is to be there. Fully. And not leak any more of your precious life force into feeling behind.
You’re not behind. You’re where you are. And that’s the only place you can be. So be there.
Where do you feel behind in your life? How could you look at it differently? Tell me in the comments!
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