When to say Enough and let an old story go

In the wonderful movie, “Saving Mr. Banks”, Mrs Travers reaches a punctuation point where she says “Enough”, and signs over the document allowing Walt Disney to make Mary Poppins the movie.

She needed to call an end to the story she had been telling herself for probably 40 plus years. The story was trapping her. Even more significantly it was preventing her from releasing Mary Poppins to the greater world where it would bring moments of happiness and joy to millions of people, and still does to this day.

We all have stories that keep us small and trapped. And in most cases we even have a degree of awareness of our stories.

The question then becomes, “How far do we go before we say enough?” Or, “How much more of this do I have to suffer before I say enough?” “What is my enough point?” “When will I be done with this?”

We live in the story for years, or decades. These stories can range from “I don’t deserve to be happy.” to “I have to do this work that I hate in order to meet my responsibilities.” to “I am not worthy or able to start my own business” to “I am not successful” (Even when you have achieved everything you set out to achieve.) to “I am the only one in my company that can do X” Oh..there are millions of stories.

Some stories might serve us well. But others will hold us back.

In my own life I have reached an enough point. (Halleluiah!) I have found myself over the course of the last few weeks saying “Enough. This story has to stop!”

When we finally call Enough we are inviting a whole new level of engagement with life and work. Often we don’t call Enough because we fear the change of who we will now become will be too much…too bold…too scary. So we stay ‘safe’ in the familiar and ever more painful story.

It is kind of interesting that on one hand we have too much of the small stories and too little (scarcity) of the stories and actions that will take us to where we really want to go. It’s the Enough/not enough polar dance. They are intimately linked.

The paradox is that when we call Enough it breaks the back of the ‘not enough’ story.

Extending beyond self there are many things as a collective we need to say Enough to. Enough to big business/money owning politics. Enough to the widening gap between those who are resource and opportunity rich and those who are resource and opportunity poor. Enough to the arrogance of taking from earth will no regard for the harmony and balance of life and nature. Enough rampant greed and consumption. Enough to winging and complaining without any willingness to stepping up to the plate and taking responsibility for contribution. Enough to not deploying the brilliance of man to build, design and create net zero cities, communities…

What are the stories in your life or business that you need to say Enough to? And when will it be time to call Enough?

Photo credit : Thomas Hawk via Compfight

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