The Forbidden Act of Blowing Up One's Life, and Why We Need It...
Updated: Feb 19, 2020
We always look for change, preach its necessity, and fantasize about its possibility.
We want to improve our career. We hope to lose weight. We want to move to a bigger house. We look forward to starting a successful venture. And so on...
Most self-help books and online resources promise us with the gradual improvement rule that "small changes over time will lead to big transformations".
Life coaches and mentors guide us to build habits, stay positive and sustain motivation.
Online courses direct us towards building more certainty, control and choice in our lives.
We are always advised to transition slowly and safely, and to build our next story based on the previous in certain conditions.
There is another way often overlooked and untold to us by many.
Most people deem this way to be risky and self-destructive. It's kept away from us and discouraged by our family, friends and loved ones with the loving intention to protect us from our innate tendency to fuck up our lives. Just the thought of it can become a crime and an intention to destroy the present and any hopes of a better future.
What I am talking about is the forbidden act of blowing up one's life and restarting it again.
Any type of growth requires shifting one's self from one state to another. Change requires something to fall apart for something else to build up.
To lose weight, one must clear up their schedule for exercise, or clear up their plate from unhealthy or excess food.
To move to a better house or place, one must leave the place they live in.
To switch to a better job, one must lose their current job, etc...
That loss and rebuild will naturally involve a level of uncertainty and discomfort.
Every change is messy. And all transformation is born out of chaos. To think otherwise is to live in a world of mediocre certainty.
The Inevitability of Crises
Every few years to decades, there comes a time when our current life feel a little off from where we'd like it to be.
When unattended, this gap can widen over time and yield frustrations and dissatisfaction about one's life. As this frustration builds up, it can become like a volcano with the sole purpose of growing gradually towards its most awaited moment:
The moment of identity-crises eruption.
The unhappiness gap between our expectations and reality will always exist in our lives.
It is unrealistic not to have this gap... Progress and growth require us to dream and to think of things in a different way (often optimistically bigger and better). This builds an expectation for us which most probably does not match our perceived existing reality.
We usually do one of three fixes to keep this gap under control: 1- Take action: work hard and take steps closer to our expectations.
2- Reduce expectations: Settle for less, or consciously reduce expectations to match our capacity.
3- Justify the gap: retreat to victimhood, circumstances, and limitations as out-of-control causes of the gap.
Those fixes help us keep our volcano under control for years and decades. With time, this gap can widen out of control turning into a turmoil of frustration ready to explode anytime into crises.
So, here I am about to give you the most uncommon advice, and preparing to be attacked by safety-lovers and fear-driven critics:
Blow up your life every now and then.
Leave that job.
Exit that friendship.
End that marriage.
Exit that business.
Leave that city.
End that story that's calling to be ended.
"That" is anything that creates toxicity, harm, unhappiness, and stagnation in your life.
"That" is an old story withholding you from growth and freedom.
"That" is an old achievement or memory that no longer serves you.
"That" is a heavy weight you carry on your shoulder.
"That" is, after endless attempts to fix, no longer in your control.
"That" may only be felt and understood by you and not others.
"That" is your sign to let go of what soon will be your legacy.
Self-Chosen Identity Crises
When you are the one blowing up your own life...
You are designing an identity crisis that is deliberate, mature and empowering.
You are declaring that you are befriending the uncertainty of not knowing what's next.
You are showing yourself not only an infinite amount of strength and resilience to go through hardship, but also a tremendous courage to build your way based on chaos and out of it.
Blowing up your certain life to live in uncertain conditions is extremely empowering. It opens up doors to infinite possibilities. In that blown-up space between stories where nothing is happening, everything and anything can happen.
On the other hand, when you settle down in certainty, your next great story is nothing but an upgraded and mildly better version of your current story (e.g. The same unsatisfying job with a higher title and/or increased salary, a new but yet again toxic partner/friend, etc...).
To self-choose, design and create your identity crises means to choose to surprise yourself with a new story, better and longer-lasting than anything you ever expected.
When and How Often to Blow up?
You don't have to wait for the forced eruption of identity crises before taking the step.
You don't have to be under the mercy of your Threshold of Sucking-it-up (ToS), i.e. the longest time you can accept unhappiness before the moment of a forced, helpless and complete mental/physical/emotional/spiritual collapse.
I have noticed that my growth slows down on average every 2-4 years from starting a new story. The uncertain starts to become certain. The exciting begins to feel like banal.
You are free to blow up your life and restart it as many times as your life stagnates. Nobody can tell you when you can or can't do it.
You can really be the captain of your own ship, sink it in the sea, and swim to find a better ship or a new shore land.
You can really be the master of your life, and choose to restart all over again.
There is nothing worse than blowing-up your life, except for death... the moment your life ends (Some may argue that even death is easy!).
Not Knowing is Beautiful
Magic lies in the space of the unknown. And often, we can't understand what we don't know.
We can have an expectation of it. But to really tap into the infinite potential of what might be and the vast possibilities of life, we must become infinitely comfortable and patient with a life naked of human-invented certainties: job, income, house, car, clothes (I meant the fancy ones!)...
One might argue that blowing up your life is an act of self-sabotage.
On the contrary, it's using your privilege to the fullest. People who live in extreme poverty do not even have the choice to blow up their lives. But, you have the choice. When you do, you will witness what it's like to have less. Only then, you can see in yourself what you could not see before, when you had everything. Your choices and path in life, while living with less, can branch out differently than if you were choosing while living in more.
Others may argue that blowing up your life is a lack of patience.
Actually, you require more patience living in the uncertain unknown than if you were living in the known. You will still require small steps to create big transformation. You may not necessarily fast-track your way to change, but you will surely be building a more solid foundation for your next life story. If a life of certainty, moderate growth and fitting in is what you are seeking, I completely respect your choice. I am not suggesting you change it.
But that does not mean it's the only way. One can also blow up their life and rebuild it every now and then.
Blowing up your life is responsible, mature, and a rational decision you can make to build a long-sustained and exciting transformation in your life.
Do not deny yourself or others from having that as an option.
Happy blow-up of your life!
Yours in Magic,