A Metaphor For Life

A Metaphor For Life

A Metaphor for Life – The Shawshank Redemption

I have to admit that The Shawshank Redemption is one of my all time favorite movies and I’m pretty hard to please when it comes to films.  This could get me started on my love of Prison Break [of course it’s absolutely nothing to do with Wentworth Miller!] and general over excitement that new episodes are being filmed.  However, that’s a whole different e mail.

For me, Shawshank is all about HOPE despite the somewhat depressing backdrop and hope is something we all need:  it keeps us moving forward in uncertain times.

These are 5 of my most favourite quotes from the film and how being locked up in an institution is a metaphor for the lives so many of us lead out there doing the corporate jobs and the 9 to 5 grind.  We’re not actually locked into a prison cell but we are still shackled on that ‘corporate road-gang’ as sure as Andy or Red were in the film.

A Metaphor for Life – Fear can hold you a prisoner.  Hope can set you free

Fear of the unknown, fear of change and fear of what other people may think about us can hold us back.  I know it held me back as I feared that the time and money invested into my education would be regarded as wasted if I didn’t follow through and do the career and office job I signed up for when I was at school.  I felt enormous guilt that I would be letting down my family.

I realized some twenty years after graduating that I had dug myself into a hole and the only person who was suffering the consequences was looking back at me in the mirror.  I was spinning my wheels and I was stuck.  It had to change.  I held onto hope and let go of the fear and you can do it too.

Hope for a better future for you, your family and loved ones and the opportunity to unlock those shackles are truly the key to setting yourself free.

A Metaphor for Life – I guess it comes down to a simple choice really: get busy living or get busy dying

Some people reach middle-age and think that it’s all over.  They talk about ‘winding down’ and ‘taking it easy’ or they worry about how they will need to work until they’re in their seventies or eighties simply because they have ‘no choice’.

But, what I think is really happening is people are making a choice to stay imprisoned by what society has told them.  We’re on a journey and one day it will end.  That’s a fact and I can’t won’t sugar coat it.  It is what it is.  If that’s the case, then why don’t you start living it?  Options and choices are out there.  I decided to go looking for myself and as my previous emails have explained it took me waaaaayyyyy too long to find what I was looking for.  As The Life Hack Tutor I’m here to help you shorten your own journey.

A Metaphor for Life – Same old sh*t, different day

Do you ever feel like your working life is spent feeling like this?  I know I have.  I used to be told that: –

  • Working late
  • Working weekends
  • Networking after work was part of the job
  • If you’re not prepared to do it then there’s always somebody read to step into your shoes

Sound familiar?  Yep, I know.  It’s as if you have to lose the essence of who you really are in order to just ‘get by’.

Why do we put ourselves through the same ‘old sh*t’ day after day?  It’s because we have been conditioned to think it is the only right and acceptable way to be.

Well, let me tell ya, it’s not.

A Metaphor for Life – I have to remind myself that some birds aren’t meant to be caged

On my website ‘About Me’ section, I talk about Lenny Kravitz’s song, ‘I want to get away, I want to fly away …’.  I think I have always felt like a trapped bird, you know the exotic brightly-coloured ones that should be out soaring the skies but are instead locked in a tiny cage for someone else’s entertainment.

For me, this was like being employed [or doing anything you don’t love] except the workplace was the cage and I was the bird.  I wanted to sing my own tune and fly my own path for so long it hurt and bubbled up inside me like a pan of boiling milk ready to spill over the edge.

Then, the ability to leverage the internet set me free and opened up a whole new world of opportunities..

A Metaphor for Life – Dear Warden, you were right.  Salvation lay within.

I have saved the best till last and in many ways it is a metaphor for a resignation letter [and not just from a job either].

The dictionary definition of salvation is ‘deliverance from harm, ruin and loss’.  Ask yourself: –

  • What is harming you in your life?
  • What is causing your life to be ruined?
  • What is causing you loss?

Whatever it is, you can resign yourself from that situation because the decision to do it ‘lies within YOU’.

I remember a time when I survived TWO rounds of redundancy in the same company and yet there were a number of staff there that still believed everything would be OK.  The signs were obvious and I wasn’t prepared to wait.  I got myself the hell outta there because I knew I was aboard a sinking ship.  Your job/career may seem safe right now but I thought that too when I qualified as a lawyer.  Times change and I had to change too in order to survive.

Andy escaped Shawshank.  It took him a long time to chisel his way out and when he escaped he crawled through a sewer to get his freedom.  What are you prepared to do to come out of the other side?  Andy worked hard and never gave up because he knew something better was waiting for him.  Nobody just handed him the key, he had to find it himself.

Will you set yourself free or will you stay locked up in the prison cell of your own making?  It’s a bit of a no-brainer isn’t it?

I wish you every success for your digital future!

Rachel A Hill LLB [Hons]

Digital Entrepreneur, Lawyer, Private Tutor and Author

P.S Find out more about how I set myself free from the rat race right here.


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