The Assassins.

photo of pathway surrounded by fir trees
Photo by James Wheeler on

Last week I had a realisation. My father may well be an inspirational genius. My dad is a great human anyway, and highly intelligent. His ‘general knowledge’ (otherwise known as ‘crap you may only need if you attend a pub quiz or during a festive game of Trivial Pursuit’) is amazing and frankly, his ability to reel off who Chelsea won against in 1986 is second to none. However, there is one ditty he has often come out with which I don’t feel I have truly appreciated until this point. “Throw off the assassins”. Let me explain.

I have had some much needed time off from all things mental health and have made the decision to not be quite so immersive from now on. I still have my course work, I still aim to become a master practitioner in NLP amongst other mental wellbeing practices, but I personally am finally that person I aimed to be when I first started this blog. I’ve finished my latest rounds of therapy and whilst it’s a weird feeling, I finally feel like I am who I am meant to be. It’s just a matter of upkeep now. So, I am not reading 2-3 self-improvement books at a time, rather taking time to enjoy fiction novels instead. I am still partaking in the occasional self-improvement book but I am being a lot kinder to myself. I am going to enjoy these books, not use them as a method of bashing myself for not being good enough.

The book which has brought on this epiphany about my dad is Joe Dizpenza’s ‘Breaking the Habit of being yourself’. It’s a fascinating one and resonates with me particularly as it blends in with the NLP work I am doing. One aspect of it is the principle is that people expect new and exciting things to happen despite not changing their actions. It’s summed up by Albert Einstein: ‘The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result’. Joe describes the routine we are all guilty of – getting up, going to work, coming home from work, going to bed, getting up and so on, you know the rest.

My dad’s point with the assassins was that a routine can put you in danger of them. They will know where you are, when you’re there. The assassins lay in wait for you at your usual spot but if you change it up, you survive another day. Whilst my dad used it as a slightly amusing way of saying he drove to work a different route to usual, the idea is (probably accidentally) profound. You need to change your actions, situations, methods, even people in your life if you are to change your life. You can even Marie Kondo it if you like – thank it, that person or situation, for what it brought you at the time, but if it no longer fits your narrative, move on.

I recently attended a ‘YES Group’ talk (which are held monthly and I would thoroughly recommend – they are held throughout the country) which, at its core, was about letting go of those emotional strings which are holding you back. I.E: make a change to change your life.

It can be scary because we are creatures of habit. We, weirdly, crave those patterns that made us miserable; it’s an addiction even if the result was always negative. It’s why we fall for the same ‘type’ of person or create similar situations for ourselves. It’s a subconscious habit. Some of the most difficult things I’ve had to do is let go of things or people who meant a great deal to me, despite them creating nothing but negative patterns in my life. I had to change the pattern, the addiction, which I subconsciously craved because I had to change my life. It was the last step to creating the person who I really knew I could be, the person that I am now. Without making those changes, I know full well I would still be stuck where I was a couple of months ago, and I would be miserable, just as I had been every time that cycle had played out.

So, in the words of the great yet unexpected inspirational guru that is my father. Go a different route. Throw off the assassins.

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