Shooting the Messenger

“People will hate you more for being right than for being wrong.” -My great-grandmother

“People will hate you more for being right than for being wrong.” -My great-grandmother

So often, I hear people say “I can’t imagine that,” when I tell them that, with small, realistic shifts in habit and mindset, they can make big changes in their lives. They think that it isn’t “realistic” to imagine growth, change, progress, and happiness. But human beings are masters of imagination. Our ability to fantasize, wonder, and lie is simply unmatched. And no one lies to themselves more than the person who is deeply unhappy. When we are miserable, we lie to ourselves that there’s nothing that we can do about it, that we don’t know how this happened, or worse: We lie to ourselves that we aren’t unhappy at all.

But until someone is truly ready to do the work to change their life, the last thing they want to hear is someone else telling them about themselves or their situation. Oftentimes, people will come to friends, family, and coaches and ask for advice not because they actually want to hear something that will help them better themselves, but to get reinforcement for the terrible decision that they’ve already made. This is why the saying “Don’t shoot the messenger” exists, and why the messenger is so rarely even needed. A lot of people simply don’t want to hear the truth, especially one so obvious that even someone outside of themselves can see it. As a life coach, I’ve yet to speak to anyone who didn’t actually know what their issues were; they didn’t need me to tell them. More often, I speak with individuals who are either directionless and need help finding their purpose and creating a plan of action, or someone who knows exactly what they need and want an accountability partner.

I believe that we all know instinctively that which is healthy and right for us. When we stop listening to our inner voice, and we become accustomed to settling or being unappreciated in any area of life, that voice becomes softer and much harder to hear. My job isn’t to be a messenger; I provide a megaphone so that you can clearly hear what your heart and mind have been saying. I give my clients a compass with which to navigate towards their own North Star, and a map on the best route to get there. Don’t shoot the messenger; the messenger is you.

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