Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Navigating Change

Resistance is futile. In life, change is one of the few certainties we can count on; we might as well learn to welcome or at least accept it.

If holding on is fruitless anyway, we might as well let go and flow. What if we stopped flailing and struggling, and instead of desperately fighting the current as we try to swim upstream, we just let go and allow the current to take us?

Remember who we are. The part of us that resists and is threatened by change is the ego or personality -- a minuscule part of who we are. Our true, deeper nature is that of cliff-divers. That part of us has been waiting to let go of aspects we have outgrown, looking for the next cliff from which to dive. It knows that a net will appear or, better yet, wings will sprout, allowing us to soar.

Emotions are just energies coursing through our bodies; let's not give them too much power over our lives. We can learn to take charge of them. The energy of fear is very similar in the body to that of excitement. We can reframe our emotions as if flipping a switch, transmuting energy from overwhelm ("OMG, I have nowhere to live as of the end of November and am on the road until the 20th!") to anticipation ("Wow! What a fascinating turn of events... Wonder where I'll land next?").

Trust. There is always a silver lining, always opportunities for growth, learning and expansion. It will all work out somehow, one way or another, and perhaps we don't need to know all the details right now. Maybe that's not our job.

What is our job, then? We take action and participate fully. We make the phone calls, check out the Craigslist posts; we do what we can. We activate and explore possibilities and pay attention to where doors open and opportunities present themselves. We follow where the energy leads, without attachment to outcome.

We learn to abide. Abiding is not passively waiting, but a conscious and alert state of mind. We remain actively aware, looking out for signs, synchronicities, "coincidences," until we have clarity.

Signs may come from surprising sources -- unexpected calls or emails, even billboards or a song on the radio. Tuning in to the signs is a natural process, but one that requires presence and attention.

Going within helps. Take time alone, ideally in nature. This is a time to dive deep and ponder the critical questions: Who am I, really? Why am I here? What kind of legacy do I wish to leave behind? What can I learn from this situation so that I don't have to continue recreating it?

Deep breathing helps to handle stress and gain perspective. Remember: Who we are is so much bigger than the circumstances of our lives.

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