Have you ever noticed what goes on inside your head when you have to correct something in your life? Let’s say that you look in the mirror one day and realize that you’ve been neglecting your health. You find yourself unhealthy and out of shape – plus your clothes don’t fit too well. What happens inside you’re head? You probably feel dread, shame, resistance, fear (about whether you can get in shape again) and a whole host of negative emotions. What happens next? You use these negative feelings to drive yourself, if you can, into getting back in shape. Maybe you get back into shape and maybe you don’t, but you sure have spent a lot of energy getting there,

Whenever we notice that we are off course in our lives, most of us leap into justification, remorse and all kinds of mental and emotional gyrations. While the process seems effective enough – and lots of people are doing it – it does cause us an awful lot of pain and energy. Shamans, though, do it differently.

When a shaman notices that she’s off track, she stops, notices where she is and where she wants to be, and starts heading in the right direction. There’s no justification, explanation or emotional torment. Shamans know that there is no possible explanation for being off course – it just happened. Think about it – can you really explain why you are the way you are? Your reactions and behaviors may be the result of events in your infancy or even a past life. Unless you use from very specific magical and shamanic techniques, there’s no way of really knowing. So why bother? Just fix it and move on!

If you notice that you’re off course by 2 degrees, make a course correction and get going. You don’t need to read a self-help book, talk about it incessantly, beat yourself silly or otherwise torment yourself about it. As Nike is so fond of saying, “Just do it!” Stop explaining your life and start living it.