On Learning From a Spider

The first thing I saw this morning when I opened my eyes was a movement on the wall opposite my bed.

It was a spider, about 6 inches below ceiling level, and it appeared to be walking on thin air. Blinking my eyes, and further focusing, revealed the thin strand of web “he” had woven.

Somewhat like a tight-rope walker, this spider proceeded to cross the room, past the central light fitting and on towards my side of the room. I watched with fascination, urging him on to make it all the way to my side without breaking the web strand and plunging vertically.

Eventually, the spider reached all the way to my side of the room. I felt such a sense of achievement for this tiny creature; though he was only really doing what came naturally for him. He had no real awareness or thoughts of:

“Ta ra! look what I’ve done!”

However as a human being, observing this feat filled me with awe and admiration.

We are all awesome

This leads me to think about all the achievements that we humans accomplish without even stopping to think about it.

We go about our day completing endless tasks, navigating our way from one achievement to another. We steer a path through life; setting goals, gaining qualifications, working, making homes, families and relationships and all the time creating an awesome story of life. Then, we place all of these amazing achievements right out of our awareness forgetting to congratulate ourselves because we’ve already begun to focus on the next thing we “have to do”.

Why all the pressure?

We often become our own super critics because we’ve internalised unhelpful beliefs about ourselves and the world. this is often starts early in life through the messages we receive from caregivers who don’t mean any harm, they’re just not aware of the impact of their words.

We grow up constantly focusing on the next goal, forgetting to look back and congratulate ourselves on all we have achived thus far. Big and small. We forget that once upon a time we didn’t have that job, run that business, hadn’t completed that course of study or training, hadn’t passed exams, or travelled, or volunteered or any of those things that we have done up to this point.

Next time you pressure yourself to achieve more, just stop for a moment.

Stop and take a good and loving look at yourself

I wonder, if that spider had been truly aware of what he had accomplished this morning when he tight-roped across my room, what would he say? If he’d turned around and looked back at the vast expanse that he had just traversed, how proud would he feel!

Stop and take a look back at all you have achieved today, in the past week, the past month, the past year, ten years. Think about all the small achievements, and, the big achievements of your life. Look back at the challenges you’ve faced and all that you have learnt from them. Think about the people you’ve helped. Remember the small hills and the large mountains you’ve climbed. Take a really good, and loving, look at yourself!

When you do this you’ll see, that just like our friend the spider, you have already traversed vast expanses!

Life is a gift and you are a wonderful human being. So give yourself some appreciation; be kind to yourself, and most of all, enjoy the journey!

Would you like some one-to-one sessions with me?

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