Lao Tzu’s saying is trite, but it’s true. “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” The step I’m referring to is changing your point-of-view: reframe your life as a Hero’s Journey (HJ) and everything will start to shift.
Here’s what I mean. Everything is going wrong. Stuff is breaking. Instead of thinking, “My life sucks,” it would feel different if you see yourself in the Tests and Trials stage of the Hero’s Journey. Now you know two things, a) the stage has an end and b) you can’t get through it alone. Thinking that your life sucks doesn’t allow for any way out. Remembering that you’ve just run into another test directs you to clear action, “All I have to do is vanquish this dragon! Who can I get to help me with this?”
Here’s another example. You keep encountering people who seem to thwart your progress at every turn. People who seem out to make your life miserable. Instead of fantasizing mayhem (or my favorite, running away), change your viewpoint to see them as Guardians of the Threshold. Guardians have a job to do. Guardians are there for you — to prove your commitment to the journey. Guardians can be vanquished only by you — using the tools only you have. Now you can remind yourself, “Cool. Custom-made for me!”
Once you know the stages of the HJ you can see where you are and take more appropriate action and have more fun than you ever imagined.
- In the regular world
- Call to adventure
- Refuse the call
- Meet mentor(s)
- Cross the threshold
- Tests, trials
- Ordeal, death
- Reward – seize the magic
- Road back
- Return to the village with the magic