Tip of the iceberg Print E-mail
News - Final Word
Friday, 19 March 2021 04:46
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“I’m not homeless; I’m house-less.” There’s a difference between the two, is what you realise when you watch ‘Nomadland’.

This 2020 film is about a woman who leaves the familiar behind, makes a vehicle her home and just keeps travelling. Bob Wells, a 65-year-old real-life nomad who has his own YouTube channel, plays himself in the film. Before becoming a nomad in 1995, Bob lived in Alaska with his wife and two boys.

He worked as a clerk at the same place where his father had worked until retirement (only to die two years later).

For decades Bob daily went to a job he abhorred, surrounded by people he disliked, just to buy stuff he didn’t even want. He was the living embodiment of Thoreau’s “quiet desperation”.  Bob felt that he had to choose between comfort (the by-product of selling your soul to a boss) and the cash-strapped freedom of nomadic tribalism.

Look, if that were the only choice, I’d be the very first person to live in my car. But, it isn’t. Being your own boss and doing work you love, never featured in Bob’s decision. Why is it that we limit our choices?

Christy Whitman says that your mind is like an iceberg – only a tiny bit shows above the surface and the rest, your unconsciousness, which rules many of your decisions, is the huge part under the water.

There are many ways to get to know your iceberg. The first is to dive down under the water. This is what Mike Dooley calls trying to pinpoint invisible, limiting, self-sabotaging beliefs. But, you don’t know what you don’t know and that is why the exercise is extremely demanding on brain cells and would probably keep you busy for the rest of your life. Alternatively you can try to discover which occurrences in the past have misprogrammed you and for this you’d probably need a life-long therapist and excellent medical aid.

Christy says that instead of diving down, you can rather bring more of your iceberg up to the surface. If you want to know what’s on your unconscious mind, you simply have to look around you. Your life circumstances will tell you what your unconscious beliefs are. Bob believes that to get an income, he has to work for a boss, doing something he hates.

So, what limiting beliefs are slyly at work in your life, girlfriend? That you don’t deserve success? That you’re not worthy of love? That you can’t have comfort and freedom at the same time?

Christy says that there is another way of bringing more of your iceberg up to the surface – to take a look at your dreams. Before the pandemic I never dreamt about lions. It changed. The other night a lioness was chasing me. I’ll never forget the way her yellow eyes focused on me. When she started the chase, I ran into the closest shop.

“Lion!” I screamed and tried to close the flimsy wooden door, but her big paw broke right through and she scratched me on the elbow. I left the door to make a dash for the bathroom – another flimsy wooden door. She didn’t follow me.

I could hear people screaming, but help immediately came. Then I heard an ambulance siren. Paramedics helped the others and the ambulance left without me. Running up to friends I pointed to my elbow. Shouldn’t I at least get a tetanus shot? Shock treatment? Nope, they said. You’re fine.

What belief did the dream bring to the surface? Guilt? That I brought a lioness into a shop and endangered others? Or that I don’t deserve care? Others do. I don’t. Really? Had that been the part of the iceberg under the water all along? Is that a belief I hold? Suddenly I could see examples of me-not-deserving-care everywhere in my life. And how did it make me feel? Horrible.

Great about it finally surfacing, but did I like the way it made me feel? How else can I see it? This way: I always escape with just a scratch.

Mike Dooley says that there is something better than knowing what your limiting beliefs are. It is knowing what empowering thoughts you want to have. You can choose how you want to interpret things, girlfriend. At all times. The power is yours. Always.

 
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