It’s amazing how hard it is to find the right pair of flip-flops.
It seems like a small thing, but if you live in these babies over the warm summer months as I do, then it’s one of those details that makes a difference in your ease and comfort day-to-day.
I had looked, in a semi-casual way, whenever I was near a flip-flop display (there are a lot of them in a surprising variety of stores) but even when I put my mind to it, I couldn’t find anything that was right. Until, that is, I wandered over to the men’s side of the shoe store.
Full disclosure: I didn’t wander, I followed my savvy daughter who was looking there herself.
And there were the flip-flops I’d been looking for – light-weight, washable, sturdy straps, comfy fit, and none of that backless high-heel nonsense that one MD I know refers to as “the orthopedist’s retirement plan.”
All I had to do to find them was open up to a possibility I hadn’t considered: the men’s shoe department.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve shopped in the men’s department of clothing stores before – mostly for shirts, because I know I need the extra sleeve length. But the idea that men’s shoes might be right for me although a small “step” away was a “leap” I had not made. (Okay, done with the puns for now.)
The serious point is that we get stuck in resolving all kinds of situations because we haven’t considered a possibility outside the boundaries of our usual ways of thinking. Why not?
Almost always there’s some preconception holding us back. I haven’t always loved being a very tall woman. I have loved being a very tall woman who has, relatively speaking, small feet.
Feel free to tell me what absurd, outworn, sexist stereotypes this thinking represents, but it isn’t as though I don’t already know that. So here’s what becomes interesting: even what you may think you already know consciously may be holding you back in ways you’re not aware of from options it would be very worth considering!
I haven’t shopped in the men’s shoe department, I suspect, because I really enjoyed the picture of myself as having this one part of my body that fit the feminine ideal of the 1950s (when I was born) as at least semi-petite. But I had never connected the dots to see that.
It’s worth asking when our only-partly-conscious prejudices and fixed ideas are keeping us from seeing options that would free up possibilities to get what we want.
Here’s a clue: anytime you find yourself saying, “Oh no, I just couldn’t” or “It’s not even worth thinking about,” stop and ask why. What limits are you worried about transgressing? What expectations can’t be challenged?
Maybe it’s time to “flip-flop” your attitude.
With You on the Path,
What are you too sure about to even question today? Are you sure?