Can you make a fresh start?

Black background, fresh white page of spiral bound notebook, and a freshly sharpened pencil

Most of the self-help industry points to you being the one responsible for making fresh starts — the empowerment model. But what if something else is available?

“At any moment we can turn the page on our past and begin again. We can make a fresh start. We can move forward as if nothing happened.” Michael Neill

All my recent posts have been following the journey through The Space Within and this week it’s chapter 6 — A Fresh Start.

Through this chapter, one thing kept standing out for me — the idea of having agency in changing our thoughts about life. Like the quote above, ‘we’ can turn the page, ‘we’ can make a fresh start, ‘we’ can move forward as if nothing happened.

I entirely agree that all those things can and do happen — and I’m not sure anyone’s doing it.

Michael does point to this in the chapter when he says

“What allows it to happen is that we are not our story. We’re not our thoughts. We’re the infinite creative potential — the space within.”

And knowing this is crucial.

I posted this on insta last week talking about the essential-ness of knowing where we’re starting from because — in the absence of that — we’re inevitably going to become lost.

If we begin from the premise that I’m a separate human, alone in the world, fighting for survival, and that it’s down to me and me alone to gain intellectual know-how and financial standing and to turn pages, make fresh starts and move forward as if nothing happened — then we’re lost, and exhausted, and feeling pretty darn terrible about ourselves when it looks like we fail. Look around at the mental health and burnout situation.

The truth of it is that these things ‘happen’ — page turning, starting afresh, moving forward — but nobody’s doing it.

Think about it…

When have you had an experience of one of these three — page turning, starting afresh, moving forward. What does it look like you did vs what happened spontaneously and naturally?

I imagine that if, for example, you had a difficult experience, you might have been talking to people about it, maybe you sought some advice, or you spoke to a coach or counsellor or friends. Maybe you read some articles or books. All sorts of things could have been done.

But pinpoint the moment when a shift happened — a realisation, a letting go, a forgiveness, or just a noticing that the old thinking had disappeared. Did you ‘do’ that? If ‘you’ turned that page…how did you do it? What were the steps so I can do it too?

You might point to the steps that preceded ‘the moment’ but have you ever tried repeating steps? Did they work that one time and then never work again?

Consider that it’s not about the steps. Consider that there’s something more intelligent running the show and spontaneously creating action-taking and conversations and turning pages. That there’s nothing ‘you’ can do, because in fact the ‘you’ that thinks it’s doing it is itself a thought in the mind saying ‘I did it’ — and that this goes for everything you think you’ve ever done in your life.

Sounds scary to the mind — but it’s the freedom of life.

With love, Helen

It’s week 5 of the Brilliance Book Group where we’re reading Michael Neill ‘s “The Space Within”. Follow along with the blogs here which align with the chapter(s) we’re reading that week.

If you’d like to make it easier, sign up to my newsletter here to get these posts and other quotes, questions and resources relevant to the chapter direct to your inbox.

I coach and guide smart, passionate, curious people who care about improving the lives of those around them. Often coaches and leaders, they’ve worked hard all their lives to be the ‘best’ them and it doesn’t seem to have delivered the happiness, security or freedom they expected. Now they’re wondering what else is available. I guide you back, prior to stories, to remember the real you because that’s what you, me and the whole world really wants! Find out more here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.
You need to agree with the terms to proceed