A new year. Which means change is afoot. How will it impact you this year? I’ve asked myself that same question and hope when it comes, I remember that ability to accept change significantly influences its affect. Do you see change as something to confront or embrace? Is it a grit-your-teeth survival contest or a Di Caprio-esque, bow of a ship, spread-your-arms-and-lean-into-it experience?
I’ve made some big changes to my practice in the last few months and even bigger ones are in store for the next few. I’m stepping it up and I’ll keep you posted but I can tell you that some of the changes have been pretty intimidating! Yet I can feel the wind on my face up here on the bow! That’s how I’m choosing to view the new developments (okay candidly, dealing with electricians and architects on new office space has taken the edge off a few of my gritted teeth!).
No change, even the initially devastating kind, is completely devoid of positive aspects–which I acknowledge can take an unreasonable length of time to make their presence known! But think back on every experience you’ve ever had that initially appeared devastating–and was. If enough time has passed, perhaps you can see how relationships developed around that time that are deep and meaningful and significant in your life now. Or how the diagnosis stopped you cold and allowed you to see and experience miracles-by-the-moment. You do that now every day and it’s made all the difference in how you live. Or the end of a marriage ultimately allowed for a partnership that’s been far more fulfilling than you ever dreamed possible.
In the book A New Earth, philosopher Ekhard Tolle states that “What you resist persists.” I doubt he means that you have to actually respond, “Oh isn’t that nice. I have heart disease” or “my spouse is leaving me” or “my parent has Alzheimers.” But we can invest so much energy in resisting and denying that we forget that this thing, whatever it is, may ultimately have some good aspects too. If nothing more than an opportunity to deeply connect with and help people in the future who travel the same journey.
There’s no formula or timeline that some brilliant psychologist has developed for how long one should spend dealing with change. We each do it a bit differently. Have you had a difficult experience in your life from which you’ve been able to now extract some good? Share your comment below and allow others who may be in the midst of the misery to gather some hope from your experience. I have a gift edition of A New Earth that I’ve given to many friends. Anyone who shares their experience here will be entered into a drawing to win it! Look for the winner to be announced in next month’s post.
As you look ahead to what 2013 might bring, I hope you join me in choosing the bow of the boat.
Wishing you wisdom,
It is so good to see your constant growth, as the face of conflict is often changing. Be blessed in the new year. Toni Raheem
Thanks Toni. Gotta grow or else, huh? You exemplify that in your work and are an inspiration. Thanks for writing.
Loved your newsletter and this book! I should re-read it.
Thanks Sue. It was a great book and I’m happy to share this collection of great quotes to the winner of the drawing–maybe to you!
Such a great reminder, Deb! I LOVE the visual of “leaning into it” on the bow of the boat with the wind in your face. Keep these newsletters coming.
Thanks Katherine. Visuals are powerful–as I’ve learned so ably from you! Thanks for writing. Deb
Deb, I look forward to your wonderful newsletter and the warm wisdom you share. Thanks for the reminder both visually and metaphorically of “leaning into the wind / life” as we journey into the new year, eagerly meeting it head on with gusto!
Thanks Bonni! As Frank McCourt put it, “Go forth!”
Thanks, Deb. This is very thought provoking and helpful.
Good luck with all the changes!