I had locked up my chickens in the indoor enclosure for a few days to give them anti-parasite medication and multivitamins in their drinking water. Having goats and a pig in the same pasture would otherwise raise issues.

This morning it was time to give the chickens more freedom in movement again. But before I allowed them to go outside I started wondering whether they would do it by themselves…

How long should you lock up an animal (or human) before they get used to captivity? Likely, there have been many (non-ethical) experiments and measurements done on that. But that is not the direction I want to go.

With the physical restriction of freedom, you are usually aware of the moment of confinement. Think back to the spring of 2020. The moment many locked themselves in their own homes. Whether you agreed with the measures or not, you will have felt that there was (an attempt to) take away your freedom.

Now there is another form of confinement that we are less aware of. But all my clients name this one. It’s about the limitations you put on yourself. Not really daring to be yourself, to show yourself, and to live your best life. Fear of what others will think, fear of not being good enough, fear of not being worth it.

Nowadays I use those fears as a signpost. As an indication of where I am not yet attuned to who I really am. For I am free, only I had imprisoned myself.

What is special about today as well is that I also literally visited a prison. Seeing a loved one locked up touches me again deeply. But I am so proud of her. Because it is in prison that she increasingly embodies the true freedom within her. And sees where she keeps herself imprisoned.

Now back to the chickens. They were very brave and confident this morning. When I opened the door, the first one quickly stuck his head out. She stepped into freedom and the rest soon followed….

Will you also take that first step?