Have you considered that your Life Metaphor determines the quality of your life? I define a Life Metaphor as a tendency to frame life in an overall way that gives you a story about the meaning of the events of your life.
Do you see life as a battle where good is fighting evil? It might be tempting to view it this way what with all we see around us acted out day in and day out. You may get to the end of each day and assess which wolf you fed, having a sense that you either won or lost a battle within yourself that day.
Perhaps you see life as a struggle where you have to work really hard to make a good life. Things just do not come easily, and more often than not, when the phone rings, it brings bad news. You might see life as a hard taskmaster from whom you just cannot catch a break.
Are you willing to consider how much your Life Metaphor impacts the quality of all the areas of your life: your relationships, your spirituality, your attitude, your health, and even the quality of your sleep?
How would the essence of your life shift if you adopted a positive Life Metaphor?
We Have a Choice
I believe we each have a choice to select a Life Metaphor that is supportive and positive; we just don’t think about it as a choice, so we slip into a pattern, a way of thinking about life, which may or may not support our desire to live a good life. Here is an example of how this concept has impacted me personally:
Last year when I learned the lump in my breast was not merely another cyst or benign node and that cancer had already begun to spread into my lymph and possibly into my lungs, I began to get a lot of encouragement from friends and family to “fight the good fight,” exhortations to “kick cancer’s butt,” and the like. But my approach to the situation was to heal gently and naturally, working with my body to move into wellness, strengthening my immune function and doing the things that have been shown to shrink tumors and help the body break them up and dissolve them.
The fighting metaphor did not feel right to me. I did not have the sense that I was fighting for my life (some of you may, and situational fighting metaphors can be empowering, but are not helpful in the long haul of your entire life), or that the tumor in my body was a “bad guy” which needed to be taken on in some epic battle. As I pondered my sense of disconnect with the warfare imagery, more thoughts came to me about my overall Life Metaphor.
I believe my Life Metaphor was partially responsible for my ability to stay focused, positive, and unafraid in the face of metastatic breast cancer.
Do you want to know what it is?
Here you go: Life is an amazing journey of learning and growing.
With this metaphor, everything that happens around me, for me, with me, and to me, has a higher purpose for my greatest good. This includes both the challenging experiences and the beautiful experiences!
Can you identify with a metaphor that leads to a focus on negative outcomes? Or can you identify with a metaphor that allows you to go through life seeing the wonderment in all experiences? This one shift can make all the difference in how your physical body responds to the events of life. When we take the pessimistic view, our bodies respond with neuropeptides preparing us for fight or flight. When we take the optimistic view, our bodies respond likewise with neuropeptides, but on the healing, restoring frequency.
I’d love to know what YOUR Life Metaphor is (or has been). And if you identify more with the battle metaphors right now (and you are NOT in a fight for your life), share a possibility for a new Life Metaphor that will support your highest good. If you’re struggling with this, I’d love to offer you a complimentary session of Spiritual Direction to support you in a deeper inquiry into this concept. Email me through this website to take advantage of this offer
Let’s learn and grow together!