You’ve probably lost count of the number of times you’ve read the story of the chained elephant, right?
Okay one more time. Humor me.
The elephant. Wild, free to explore, to discover and enjoy the beauty of its natural habitat. Yet, this massive powerful creature succumbs to a life tethered to a chain. Docile. Accepting. Settling.
When elephants are born into captivity, the owner ties the animal to a tree or post with a thick chain. The idea is to prevent this 250-pound baby from escaping. Of course, initially, during the first few weeks, the small elephant tests this chain binding her again and again, trying to free herself so she can wander off as nature intended.
But her efforts are no match for these steel links. As time passes, she gradually learns that she is no match for the strength of the chain. She gives up on her attempts to free herself and settles for a life inside that small circle.
As she grows up into an adult, this elephant is so conditioned by past experience that she can now be tied to a small tree with a flimsy rope or even no rope. She no longer tries to wander because the belief that she does not have the power to break this tie that binds her is ingrained in her.
The adult elephant can so easily snap the rope or even uproot that tree to which the rope ties her, but she won’t even try. Because early in life, she was taught that true freedom will never be hers. And so, for the rest of her life, she lives with that belief. Tame. Docile. Nothing like that powerful and gorgeous creature she was born to be.
Can you relate?
We have all gone through times in our lives where we were bound by our past and our fear of failure. Of course we know we should change. But we…..can’t.
Can you relate?
Do you feel bad for this elephant?
Do you feel that your life has be trapped in what you were conditioned to believe when you were young? Or maybe even more recently?
It is time to unchain the elephant.
We all have doubts, fears, disappointments in life.
But it is important to get out of our own way.
Go on a negative thought diet.
We must face our self-limiting beliefs, tell our inner critic to shut up.
We must embrace who we are.
We must unleash our full potential.
Think about it.
Can you reframe your thinking to “unthink” your past, eliminate your fear and unleash your potential?
Wednesday Wisdom is a series with short bursts of easy-to-consume wisdom in the form of stories, quotes, anecdotes, reflections, meditations and humor.