How to find your way out of the maze

Life's challenges may seem insurmountable but it's important to remember that there's always a way out

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By Delna Anand

Published: Thu 30 Jun 2022, 9:45 PM

One of my most fun childhood memories is visiting my grandparents in Lucknow (North India), and taking a trip to the ancient architecture marvel, a beautiful labyrinth called Bhool Bhulaiya, which literally translates to ‘a place where one forgets the way and gets lost’.

Have you ever walked through a labyrinth or maze? You walk through numerous passageways trying to find your way out; sometimes you meet dead-ends, and sometimes walk the same path over and over again. And when you think you’re on the right path, you’ve actually taken a full circle and come back to the same place. But the greatest dead-end is when overwhelm stalls you. The trick is to keep going. A rather good analogy to life itself. We’re all in a maze, and our journey of soul-searching can sometimes feel like a struggle. Repeating patterns, facing the same triggers, feeling helpless and trapped, and it’s no longer fun.

But being stuck allows you to understand something new about yourself. When there’s no one left to help you navigate, you learn to trust your own instincts and must keep moving. And that’s because you will always be your own true compass.

Feeling lost in life shows up in different ways: overwhelm, lack of interest, self-neglect, increased fatigue, anxiety, low self-esteem, etc. Sometimes, life situations have nudged you off your track, but no matter what, it is possible to find yourself again.

The first step is to acknowledge that you have derailed, and be willing to find the way back to your true self, to find what truly feels good for you, to speak your truth and be happy – truly happy, no matter what the external situation is.

Hi Stranger, nice to meet you.

In the tug of war of being mother, wife, daughter, colleague, etc, have you become a stranger to yourself? Yes, these are important roles, but they aren’t the sum total of your existence. When was the last time you did something just for yourself? Giving yourself the gift of time is the greatest step you can take in the journey to finding yourself.

Make time for you!

The reward for attention (to self) is always healing. Start doing things you used to love. Take a dance class, listen to your favourite songs, sing karaoke, start reading again. These little things can bring so much joy.

Your tribe improves your vibe

Surround yourself with people who you love, positive people who’d support you emotionally and lift you up.

Get the clutter out

It feels good to release all that no longer serves you – be it stale thoughts, debilitating stories you’ve told yourself or even material things. Get organised.

Look after your body

Fill it with good, clean food. Don’t deprive yourself of the things you love. Remember, balance is the key.

Look to the future

Noted psychologist Dr Ben Hardy suggests: imagine the person you want to be, then BE that person right now. When you do this, your imagined FUTURE directs your present behaviour, rather than your past.

Journal and Reflect

Journaling is like writing letters to yourself. The more you write, the more you will open up to your authentic self and start to trust yourself. This is a form of deep meditation too.

No matter where you are stuck, there is always a way out. You may follow the right people, the right signs and get out quickly, or you may take longer. But keep going. The reward is exhilarating.

Connect with Delna Mistry Anand across social media @DelnaAnand

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