Finding Your Way to Now

Today’s article is written by Change Coach Alex Linares


Imagine you are driving to a new city using your GPS and at first it seems to navigate you out of your home city accurately so you are closely paying attention to every direction and prompt it provides. But as you get farther from the city it begins to double back. It tells you to make a right turn and when you do it spins again and says “recalculating.”


Because you haven’t been paying attention to the mile markers and the landmarks around you you find yourself disoriented. Nothing looks familiar and because you were focused on the words from the GPS you are having a hard time navigating to get back on track. So you turn it back on and drive a bit slower, this is the only tool you have to get you there after all.


Once again when you make a turn your GPS begins to reroute but now it begins to comment on your last turn. “Why would you go right? That’s not how you get there.” After you resolutely decide to upgrade your phone when you get back from this trip and that tomorrow you will finally do that software upgrade you listen even more intently to see if you are missing something. (Spoiler alert: you are not)


Even in the disorientation there would be a point where you would realize that closely focusing on the erratic and contradictory directions is counter productive. You would pull off the road, turn the music way down so you could see better (why do we do this anyway?) and begin to include more of your senses to orient yourself.


What was the last turn that was familiar? How long ago was that? Do I even want to go pick up that antique card catalog after all? You would essentially expand the tools available to you to find your way.


The culmination of processes and patterns we call our brain is a sophisticated memory machine. Its job is to learn and interpret enough information to then project backwards (past) and forward (future) and attempt to orient us in the unknowable moment to moment experience of being human.


I don’t know about you, but my internal GPS can be burdensome. It can confidently claim to lead me in one direction and then dish out strong opinions and sometimes abuse about the path I have taken.


I have often wondered if the reason why our brain becomes erratic navigation systems when we think of our distant past and future may be because neither exist. Maybe the reason why we spin, double back, u-turn and recalculate has less to do with the GPS and more to do with the location. Because how does one navigate to what has never existed before? How do we navigate to the place where we already are?


And yet we desire, we dream, we regret, and we continue this movement of life. What if our brain is only one of the tools our mind-body patterning has available. What if we sit back and listen to the replete symphony of thoughts, sensations, and emotions available each and every moment?


Next time your internal GPS system begins to spin, slow down, sit back and turn up the volume of your entire life.


You have arrived at your destination.




You can learn more about Alex here:


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