The other day I wrote a post about fake obstacles.
I meant to publish the first post of this series and for some reason the digital end of things took days to get aligned: for every step I solved, three new issues arose. And so I wrote a post about that.
Related Article: Fake Obstacles
In the past I would have resolved every single one of those new issues before proceeding, but these days I understand that such delays have been conjured up by my inner 7-year old just so that I will continue to fly under the radar, rather than stepping into the light.
And, let’s be honest, publishing a blog post is a very visible act and therefore a huge trigger for that inner kid who really wants me to lie low and stay out of trouble.
And I get it. I mean, if you’ve spent lifetimes being persecuted for speaking your truth, ended up on the stakes or imprisoned time and again just because of your perspective, there comes a point where you’re done. I mean, if all it does is just get you killed…
And that’s what happened one day, some lifetimes back: once again facing my execution, I turned to my fellow captive, and in a low, angry voice I swore to her I would never speak my truth again.
I’ve spent this lifetime battling that oath.
Needless to say that the family I landed myself with totally reinforced the oath, teaching me even in this lifetime that certain things are better left unsaid. Sure, there’s no prison sentence or hot flames this time around, this is modern day Europe. But derision and ridicule are still strong deterrents for a highly sensitive little empath who just wants to belong.
And so instead of freeing myself from it, I recommitted to that oath and learned to be silent.
Until I filled out my Life Chart, figured out what was really going on, and decided to deal with that once and for all.
Related Article: The Life Chart
Now, in the process of dealing with it, which includes ‘actually stepping into the light’, my subconscious has conjured up every single manner of delay, every single manner of distraction and every single sabotaging tool it can think of.
This includes my brother building a swimming pool underneath my living room (trust me, you can’t make that stuff up!) and me moving houses four times in four years, twice across continents.
And that’s what this series is about: all the obstacles that arise as we’re trying to achieve our goals and live our dreams. Hence, the Obstacle Series.
But apart from the typical delays and distractions, publishing my first blog post made me aware of the nature of Fake Obstacles.
Fake Obstacles include things I’ve already resolved countless times before, but for some reason I just keep forgetting…
Yeah, I know, who does that, right?
Like, I keep a journal. And when you go over any given three months, you’ll find at least one topic that has been resolved and processed but which is nevertheless repeated within that three month period ‘as though it were a new and first time issue’!
In fact, certain topics keep coming up, time and again, and I’m never aware that I have dealt with them before. Sometimes even just the day before!
Turns out I have a lousy memory!
Now, I’ve known that for a long time, but recently I’ve started to wonder if perhaps that lousy memory isn’t part of the set-up: it allows me to reinvent the wheel time and again, without ever really moving forward!
If you keep resolving the same issues, you’re not necessarily gaining a deeper understanding – which I thought in the past.
No! It’s a delaying mechanism that keeps you chasing your own tail!
Of course there’s a solution to that, like: distilling the essence of your journal into a log. But you won’t implement that solution if you don’t realise you need to!
Related Article: The Challenge Log Routine
So, that’s one fake obstacle. Another one is where you stumble over things that used to be an issue. And now they have become ingrained in your patterns as ‘being an issue’, even though they no longer are.
In my case, I’ve spent a lot of time these past four years glitching on my website. Things that should work didn’t, for no clear reason. And then they’d suddenly work again. Describing it to friends or to the support team of the tool in question, I would feel as if my own apps were gaslighting me: the problem could never be reproduced, and yet the moment I was left alone with the program it would go unresponsive – and drive me to distraction.
And so of course I wasn’t surprised when this time around the blog blew up in my face and nothing about my website seemed to cooperate. In fact, I had kind of expected it!
But that, right there, that makes it a fake obstacle, because it’s based on my expectation that the website will glitch. And then it does, because: how can it not?
But… this time around I’m not allowing delays, whether deliberate or unwittingly.
I attracted those glitches in the past because they seemed to be legitimate ways for me to lose weeks but things are different now. I look at those glitches now and tell them: “That’s not how I roll anymore. You’re a fake obstacle! And I’m going to find a short-cut out of this!”
Of course fake obstacles still need to be resolved, but once you realise the solution doesn’t entail anything you didn’t already do a million times in the three preceding days, then you know there isn’t an actual issue; then you know you’re the issue and that you’re allowing a fake issue to stall you!
So that’s what I’ve been taking a closer look at this past week.
Of course, it’s difficult to differentiate between actual issues and fake issues, but I’m starting to see that if the obstacles that arise help me honour my commitment to my inner 7-year old – which means they help me stay under the radar, then I know: I did this!
And as it turns out, that happens to be most of the time!
And I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s really just me not being aware of all the other times where the issue was also fake…
So maybe I should rename this: The Fake Obstacle Series! 😆