The Itsy Bitsy Spider

A description of a spider spinning her web is used to great metaphoric effect in one of my favorite book series, Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. As explained, a spider spins two kinds of silk - one is sticky and the other is dry.

"if ye watch a spider careful for quite a long time, you'll see that she goes only on the dry strands, for if she walked on the sticky stuff, she'd be stuck herself."

This small yet poignant scene struck a chord.

In my mind, this description became a perfect metaphor for our thinking.

Each silk strand represents a thought; some are dry and as such allow us to move quickly and safely to other thoughts. Others are sticky causing us to get stuck in our thinking.

The dry thoughts move us fluidly and powerfully through life while the sticky thoughts weaken and disempower us.

I recalled the number of times my children, clients, friends and I unknowingly walk down our own sticky strands of thought. We get stuck in those thoughts and spin round and round never really getting anywhere.

Much like a bug, we are caught in a web. A web comprised of our thoughts.

How often, in fact, do we think of ourselves as those helpless bugs caught in a spider's web?

 Feeling like we are stuck and at the mercy of our circumstances?

What we may have forgotten or perhaps never realized is that...

we are the spider.

We create the web. 

We create the sticky thoughts as well as the dry thoughts.

We have the ability to recognize thoughts for what they are: sticky or dry - empowering or disempowering.

Wealso have the ability to recognize when we are about to step into a sticky thought or are already in the midst of a web of sticky thoughts and redirect our steps accordingly.

How amazing is that?

Much like a spider, the web wecreate can be our own masterpiece.


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Lana Bastianutti