When we first set off on the road to self-discovery, we’re optimistic and excited about this inner adventure. We’re confident that we’ll plant our flag atop the inner mountain, and that whatever presently limits us will soon be a relic of the past. But then we get a dose of reality. Talk about tough sledding! Rather than becoming noticeably better, it can feel as if we’re actually getting worse; like one step up the mountain, two steps sliding back. The bad habit we would break looms larger; frustration mounts; despair sets in; and soon we’re thinking about throwing in the towel.
But things are not what they seem, which is why those of us who aspire to reach and realize our own highest possibilities must gain new self-knowledge, beginning with the following: we have not gotten worse! On the contrary, what’s actually happened is that our effort to be free has made us more aware of our captive condition.