If changing your mind is not an option, then you live in a prison.

Gabriela Fagundes
6 min readMay 30, 2022


Photography by Hüseyin Sahin

How many times have you found yourself doing something that no longer made sense? How many times have you stayed or gone to a place just because you “told” you would be there? How many times have you spent hours, days, weeks or maybe years doing something just because you started doing it? How many times have you continued with a story about yourself or the world that no longer made sense? How many times have you stayed doing work that turns you into a zombie? How many times have you turned your life from water to concrete?

If changing your mind is not an option, then, in fact, you are in a prison. No matter the context, the situation, the person, whatever, you always have within your range of possibilities, the option to give up, to change your mind, to reconsider.

Samy Charnine, 1967

This myth of stability, of constancy, is just one more strategy of this patriarchal system to castrate life, to castrate the connection with the present. If we have this mental construct that we can’t give up, then we go on like mice on the ramster wheel doing something we don’t want to do because we can’t “give up”. There we remain, numbining ourselves from life and waiting for death.

Changing your mind doesn’t mean you’re leting go your principles, that you’re draining or breaking a commitment. It means that you are learning something, that you are transforming. The hallmark of integrity is honesty, not consistency.

You can change your mind about everything, even the things your parents, your friends, your partner wouldn’t like about you. You might, for example, change your mind about being a slave to this Patriarchal culture and start becoming your own Authority, or change your mind about eating fruit instead of bread in the morning, or change your mind about going to college, or change your idea about being in a relationship.

It may be that you have built a series of stories about this throughout your life, such as: “I can’t give up, if I chose this, then I have to go all the way, it’s life or death.” “Giving up is for the weak.” “Giving up is going back, I just walk forward.” These are beliefs that are so, so deeply rooted in our collective unconscious that we often don’t even realize when these thoughts hijack us in the dead of night. These stories are in superhero movies, novels, songs, school, family, everywhere. (These were some of the stories I believed faithfully until recently and I still get caught up in them in some situations).

Changing your mind for no specific reason, just because you chose to do it, is a powerful way to transform your life. When I started to experience this super power I felt like a bird that breaks free from its cage.

Changing your mind about having a degree, for example. I was taking a course that wasn’t my dream, but it was my dream univertisy, at least. In the 4th period I started to feel that there were other things calling me, things that my heart was beating very hard for. I began to feel an urge to follow through and throw myself fully into what I was being called upon, into this project I was working on, into the other things I was studying outside the university. Many people said: “Hold on, you’re already halfway through the course, what does it cost to finish it, you’ve really started.” “That’s how it is, college has a lot of things you won’t agree with, there are these subjects that are boring, there are these things that don’t make sense, but that’s how life is, hang in there, it’s over soon.” “Once you have your degree, you may find it easier to get a job. At least you’ll get a degree.”

What is the cost of spending another two years doing something I’m clear on that doesn’t make sense to me today? It costs my vitality, it costs my presence, it costs my enchantment in being alive, it costs how much I would have to anesthetize myself to “endure” things I didn’t want. It costs the flame that burns in my heart. It costs my freedom, my authenticity. And I was not willing to pay that cost.

This was a situation in my life where the option to change my mind was a Chameleon. It camouflaged itself and was almost invisible among the possibilities that were on my radar: changing majors, changing colleges, moving to a university abroad, doing an exchange program. Among all these options, abandoning the plan I had made 2 years ago was not on my table. I was blinded by this story that I couldn’t change my mind, “I have to go all the way”.

Something totally different from what you have in mind to do is now possible. A totally different decision from the ones you have on the table is now possible. Like the chameleon that changes from leaf green to sun yellow to signal to opponents that it is “ready to fight”, changing your mind signals to life that you are ready to live and not survive.

We are disconnected from our feelings, walking through life totally numb. We do not have access in our hearts to pure sadness to hear it say that it is time to end cycles, to change course. We don’t have access in our bones, the rage to destroy the story, the concept, the plan, the reason, the decision that was made before, and so, choose and declare what we want to do or be in the LITTLE HERE AND NOW. We remain numbned and obsessed with finishing, with checking, with saying: I completed it. I finished. Congratulations, what’s the next step?

Holding on to not changing your mind is pretending to be somewhere you’re not. It’s like carrying a lie and living someone else’s life.

It may be that for this situation you are living now, you don’t see a way out, you say: no, but for that there’s no way I can change my mind, I signed a contract, I already paid 200,000 reais, I already bought the ticket, I’ve been married for 10 years, I’m almost at the end of the course. Our mind is a master at finding justifications to continue feeding these old stories.

Changing your mind is not about running away. It’s about feeling what you really need right now, clearly, using your feelings, your fear, your anger, your sadness and your joy, and taking into account that among the infinite possibilities of decisions, giving up is among them.

We are human beings, in metamorphosis, in constant transformation and there is nothing more natural than changing course.

What do you need to do to “give up” what no longer makes sense? What needs to be healed so that changing lanes is just another variant of your life?

Below is a possibility for an experiment if you want to go beyond the limits of your intellectual body.

Take a blank sheet. Have a person read the questions below to you and timer each one for 1 minute. You’re going to let your hand just write, don’t let your mind write.
What are you doing? What are your commitments today?
Why do you commit to doing what you are doing?
Did you commit to these things from your authority and your center or from someone else?
Are you fulfilling someone else’s life instead of your own? Do you still want to do this?
Why do you keep doing this? Have this idea, this concept, this story? What’s the purpose?
What are you avoiding recognizing?
2. After that, choose the main thing that appeared in the answers to these questions and that you want to change your mind. “What I’m angry about not having changed my mind.”
3. Grab a towel and start wringing, let your anger build up in your body.
4. Start saying, “I’m angry, because I keep…!”
5. Then I start saying sentences that start with “I’m changing my mind now, stop…” and “I’m stopping/taking a stand/speaking/saying…

For example:

“I’m changing my mind now, stop being adaptable and say yes to everything and everyone! I am acting from my center and my own power.”

“I stop being a victim of my circumstances. I am defending myself and taking responsibility for my life!…”

“I will not participate/follow this trip/event/invitation! Change my mind now!…”

Love and anger,




Gabriela Fagundes

Possibilitadora, Pesquisadora e Criadora de Culturas Regenerativas