Change Keeps Happening
Life sure can be a whirlwind...
Just when we think we've landed in patterns of thoughts, feelings, beliefs and behaviors that support our well-being and understanding of our self, the tides change.
Somewhere in my early years, I developed a sense that the 'good life' was one that would be built on correct thinking and behaving, and that conducting myself accordingly would result in an unchanging knowing of myself and a steadfast, secure, rock solid reality surrounding me. I searched for the right ways to be, the right ways to live, the right ways to relate.
As life continued, my parents divorced and the immediate world around me changed in ways I never imagined it would. All of the tools I'd acquired to that point were about building the 'right' things and holding on tight. I had no idea how to handle the things that seemed to be going 'wrong.' I had no idea how to handle change.
Life is full of seasons.
Though I knew I would grow up and leave home, the idea that life would keep shifting in unpredictable ways and that I would keep becoming new versions of myself across emerging seasons of life alluded me. I was terrified at the way change was happening. My reality was unrecognizable and the key players in my life seemed to be shape-shifting in real time. I had no idea who or what to trust.
Rather than looking ahead, I became preoccupied with trying to stitch together whatever remnants I could find of the reality it seemed everyone else was okay with leaving behind.
My efforts to hang on became the source of prolonged, complex grief and other related problems. I was missing out on creating the memories of the new season emerging in front of me. I simply did not know how to find a good enough position between hanging on and letting go. I had no secure base, and lived in confusion, pain, and fear much of the time.
When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be. (Lao Tzu)
Eventually, I learned to let go of the things I'd known. I learned to see them from new perspectives, to understand them from the lens of my adult vs. child self, and to recognize that it was not only okay, but vital that I allow myself to move into the freedom of choice and the spirit of adventure that were mine to embrace in the new season.
My life gradually shifted from being one that had to be contained in a tiny box of rules, regulations, and past events to one that could remain rooted in core values, while also becoming expansive, creative, and connected.
Change requires humility and courage
We all move through seasons of life that require us to cooperate with the energies of hanging on to the memories that help us know how we've become who we are, where we've been, and give us access to the mind-body resources associated with those who've loved us, important teachings, and core experiences.
That said, we must also know how to release things that no longer belong to us.
In order to cooperate with change, we often have to admit to ourselves that something is not working. We are bound to find ourselves periodically stuck hanging onto old beliefs about our self or others, outdated worldviews, unhelpful behaviors, or expired relationships.
When this happens, we have to be willing to release the anchors of pride, right/ wrong thinking, fear, and control. When we release these anchors, we can begin to flow with the tide of shifting awareness. We can begin to cooperate with trying on new perspectives and understandings that support growing into the person that will help us live actively and well with what is showing up on the horizon of our life.
Whether you find that your life is changing due to welcome events (new relationship; new career move; birth of a child; a child reaching new developmental milestones, a new home), or as a result of unwelcome events (loss of a loved one, car accident, change in health condition, loss of a job), you likely have some form of change settling or emerging in your life.
Living a new world
When we cooperate with season shifts, we eventually find ourselves 'landing' in new places. We find ourselves surrounded by new possibilities, and new dimensions of meaning, purpose, and connection. We may find ourselves experiencing increased confidence, fulfillment, and engaging with aspects of life we never imagined were within our reach.
Like travel, it is often a bit bumpy and uncomfortable, yet when we arrive at our destination our efforts frequently prove to be well worth while.
Consider reflecting on changes emerging in your own life.
Is there hanging on vs. letting go work taking place in your life? If so, what are the themes surrounding that work?
What 'anchors' might you need to lift to allow forward movement?
Are you afraid of what will happen if you move toward change? What are you telling yourself about what might happen?
What new tools or skills do you need to develop in order to live well with what is emerging?
What support do you need to move through this time of change?
We seem to be in a time of not just individual, but global shifting. What is awakening in you as a result? How might you cooperate with the shifting awareness in a way that aligns with your personal path?
Consider these themes as you enjoy listening to 'Landslide.'
Landslide Fleetwood Mac
I took my love, I took it down Climbed a mountain and I turned around And I saw my reflection in the snow covered hills 'Til the landslide brought me down Oh, mirror in the sky, what is love? Can the child within my heart rise above? Can I sail through the changin' ocean tides? Can I handle the seasons of my life? Mmm Well, I've been 'fraid of changin' 'Cause I've built my life around you But time makes you bolder Even children get older And I'm gettin' older, too Well, I've been 'fraid of changin' 'Cause I've built my life around you But time makes you bolder Even children get older And I'm gettin' older, too I'm gettin' older, too Ah, take my love, take it down Oh, climb a mountain and turn around And if you see my reflection in the snow covered hills Well, the landslide will bring it down And if you see my reflection in the snow covered hills Well, the landslide will bring it down Oh, the landslide will bring it down Source: LyricFind Songwriters: Stevie Nicks