Sometimes on the trail as with life things take an unexpected turn. Other times we mindfully and intentionally shift our direction. Sometimes we choose one path while others choose another. It’s ok.
Hike Your Own Hike
This is an expression that means different things to different people. For some it translates to “mind your own business“ and for others it means “go at your own pace."
In life telling others how to live and what to do is, with good reason, often unwelcome and amounts to meddling in what is not yours. Yet there’s value in sharing what helped you when we meet someone with a similar challenge as we had faced. That’s human kindness.
The way we share or the way we word things makes a big difference. If we met someone coming the opposite way, sharing that “the trail ahead was ill marked so a map and compass helped me” allows space for the other to do as they wish with that info. At that point it’s healthy for all involved to disengage and respect their right to choose. They will ask for more info if they choose.
If we were to insist they take our map and compass we’d be giving up our own survival tools for their sake. If we were to offer to double back and go with them forsaking our own hike is that reasonable? No, that’s commonly referred to as codependent behaviors and is a topic in some of my courses. We’re responsible to others but not for others. That’s not our load to carry.
We can apply those same lessons to sharing with others, supporting one another, holding space, honoring other's right to make their own individual choices and then live with the results of their decision no matter how it turns out.
Go at Your Own Pace
Our favorite trail is shaped like an oval and we generally travel the full oval. Hikers call that a loop trail. The neat thing is there are several trails that cut the oval short. At any one of these junctures one can choose a shorter path and still wind up at the same destination as any of the other trails. There’s one parking area and one entrance / exit.
Sometimes we have people in our life walking along and traveling with us. Sometimes, for their own reasons, they choose a different path. Often times there is absolutely nothing wrong with this path and it leads to the same destination. We depart with a smile, maybe a hug, and say a cheerful “see you later” knowing we’ll meet again. We may not know what time exactly but we depart with mild sadness with joy in our heart and continue our walk.
Together and Separate
Tony and I walk together but sometimes we aren’t even in each other’s sight. We stay on the same trail yet go at our own pace occasionally waiting for the other to catch up. This gives us the peace of walking fast or slow along different parts. We can honor our individual body and spend our individual time conversing with our Creator. We catch up at various points. We travel together while honoring each other’s space. Finding friends like that is a blessing and treasure.
An Entirely Different Path
There are also trails that head north for miles into another park in the mountain. It’s an entirely different trail and does lead back down to this trail I've been talking about but it also has its own exit and parking area.
Sometimes people in our life traveling along with us choose an entirely different path. This path may not lead to the same destination and it’s likely we’ve parted ways for an extended amount of time. At some point in the future we may wind up meeting again. The certainty of that is unknown as well as the timing and possibility. Sometimes we need to hold space for our sadness in order to allow acceptance and joy back into our heart. While we may have sadness thinking of those who have chosen a different destination, living in constant sadness while pushing away joy and happiness is not emotionally healthy.
Emotional health, balance and peace are topics in my courses, books and the foundation of my Aroma Freedom practice. If that's something that interests you check out available courses and Aroma Freedom sessions. Our sense of smell is our super power and you can learn more here
See in the video the green lines and blue lines on the tree? the blue lines like this // indicate the blue trail turns toward that direction. The green lines like this \\ indicate turn that way for the green trail. The blue and green trail meet on the south side and rejoin. Different trails to same destination.