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Never say never

All throughout my life there have been things I claimed I could (or would) NEVER do. And when I said NEVER, I meant it in the most sure and certain way possible, accompanied by a real (or implied) stamp of the foot for emphasis.

  • I would NEVER have a cat as a pet, because I’m not a cat person.
  • I could NEVER live alone, because I have to have company at all times.
  • I could NEVER leave Victoria or live away from the ocean, because it’s my home.
  • I would NEVER work from home, because I don’t have enough self-discipline and I’d get bored.

It wasn’t necessarily that I didn’t believe I was capable of doing these things… more that for whatever reason I felt the need to firmly define, beyond all possible shadow of a doubt, Who I Am and What I Do (or don’t do, as the case may be), forever and ever, amen.

Perhaps you can relate?

I’m not sure why I tend to lean this way – maybe it’s a fear of the unknown? Perhaps I feel the need to build some sort of platform on which to base my self-image? I don’t know, but this is one lesson that keeps being thrown my way again and again, and yet somehow I fail to learn it completely.

Never say never.

Of course, there are times when it’s good to have that definition – in terms of personal ethics, for example, or your own rules for how you will treat others. When it comes to character, it’s valuable to be sure and certain and unwavering.

But when it comes to those other areas and decisions in life, why do we feel the need to draw such distinct lines, create such solid boundaries?

I have discovered that whenever I challenge myself to think beyond the stifling walls I’ve built around my life and consider the alternative, even if only for a moment, life becomes undeniably richer. And the funny thing is that I’ve ended up doing many of the things I thought I could (or would) NEVER do, with no regrets (beyond, in some cases, wishing I’d done them sooner)!

  • Guess what? I AM a cat person, and have now enjoyed living with the sweetest cat around for the past 18 years.
  • I actually lived on my own for several years, and, as it turned out, quite enjoyed the privacy and freedom of not having to deal with roommates.
  • I found that I actually was able to leave my home, and the ocean, and start to build a new life in a far-off city with a beautiful riverfront and great walking paths just a block away from my new house.
  • I now work from home, and, surprisingly enough, find that I DO have the required self-discipline and don’t get bored (at least no more so than I ever did at the office!).

Looking at that list, I’m starting to wonder where I’m still saying NEVER in other areas of my life, and how my world might change if I were to expand my own self-defined horizons.

Food for thought…

Does NEVER limit you? How do you challenge yourself to think beyond the boundaries?

Laurel Storey, CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher. Writer, reader, tangler, iPhoneographer, cat herder, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, needle felter, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.

{ 8 comments… add one }
  • a.eye February 6, 2012

    So true. I’m glad you got past your “nevers”!

    I need to look into myself and see what other nevers I still have and that I can move beyond. Perhaps they are holding me back.
    a.eye recently posted… Brother from another motherMy Profile

  • DeSha Ranch February 6, 2012

    I try to refrain from using that word!!! 🙂
    DeSha Ranch recently posted… Big DaddyMy Profile

  • Sabrina February 7, 2012

    Yeah, never is right up there with step on a crack break your mama’s back…Really don’t want to test the waters on that one. As soon as you murmur the word a big fork will appear to assist you in eating those words. 🙂 So, like DeSha, I don’t say the word but I’m sure I have a few nevers sprinkled around my subconscious chocking the life out of my future. Definitely something to think about.
    Sabrina recently posted… Living Should Breed UnderstandingMy Profile

  • Cdnkaro February 7, 2012

    Visiting via Periphery- congratulations on your award! I can definitely relate to this one- it’s come back to bite me in the ass several times. Similarly, I find it’s unwise to say ‘always’. Because there are ‘always’ exceptions to the rule. Always. Great stuff!
    Cdnkaro recently posted… Tasty Tuesday: Rouladen- a Valentine’s Day meal to win any man’s heartMy Profile

    • Dawn
      February 7, 2012

      Oh yes, “always” is another one – especially dangerous in disagreements with others. “You ALWAYS…” Not good.

      Thanks for stopping by, and thank you for the congratulations! 🙂
      Dawn recently posted… Never say neverMy Profile


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