The Pace of Change
Step into the River — with both feet!
Have you ever resisted change? I sure have!
I think that’s a common thread with all of my clients. Probably because I myself have been all over the place in dealing with change. I love it and hate it. It’s funny that I used to teach a program called, “Change: Navigating Life Transitions.” Probably because I’ve come to know the territory so well!
The greatest things are on the other side of change, and yet I have witnessed myself — and countless others — resist it time and time again.
Maybe you’ve experienced a version of this: you want a change, yet it doesn’t happen. You reconsider. You contemplate alternatives, you question whether you really want the change. You wait to be sure. You’re afraid you don’t know enough, yet. So you research, ask opinions, and you don’t take action.
This can go on for weeks, months or even years! You feel the stress of sitting on the fence, a most uncomfortable place to sit, by the way! It takes a huge amount of energy to hold indecision and inaction. Meanwhile, you continue to live in the situation you know you want to change without taking action.
It sounds crazy, doesn’t it? Yet, after coaching hundreds of people over the years, it’s not uncommon. One of my clients had waited 27 years for clarity about a divorce! Our work together supported him in finally taking action.
I was recently in Eugene, Oregon. Since my sister and brother-in-law live there, I’ve gone to visit numerous times, sometimes for a week and up to months at a time.
During longer visits, I bring, borrow or buy a bike and keep up one of my passions, cycling every day. There is a beautiful and inviting spot along the Willamette River where I often stop, meditate, do some chi gong, sit on a bench, and stand at the water’s edge.
Here’s a ritual I’ve created whenever standing at the water’s edge.
I face downstream.
This is a fast-moving river. The current whooshes by me. Past me. Through me. And downstream.
- I open my palms downstream.
- I energetically let go and send whatever I am done with, don’t want, is over, down the river and the current sweeps it away.
- Sometimes there’s a mental list of all the things I want to send down the river.
- Sometimes there’s no list; it’s just allowing the energy of letting go.
- I empty out.
- Tabala Rasa.
Then I’m ready for what’s next.
I face upstream.
- I may not know what’s coming next, but again, I open my palms into the direction of this current rushing towards me, to me and through me.
- And I allow myself to receive.
- Again, sometimes there’s a list of all that I want to receive, all that I want to have come my way…
- Sometimes it’s just allowing myself to receive.
- That means listening, feeling and accepting what comes to me.
- It opens me to intuition and my own inner guidance.
What came to me on this recent trip was an irresistible impulse to move to Eugene. There had been several external reasons, and at the river’s edge, I started to feel a deep internal drive or current in that direction.
What struck me was the difference in what could happen next.
I could resist the urge. Think about it. Get around to it. Forget about it. Ask opinions. Doubt the impulse. And it would never happen. Or it may happen, at a much later time.
I could put one foot in the river. The foot on land would dig deeper into the soil, while the foot in the water would be pulled by the current. It seemed that would make it difficult to be centered or balanced. And it didn’t seem solid or comfortable.
That didn’t even occur to me.
It was unconscious at first. I had an urge to step into the current of this fast-moving river and let the river guide the pace of change.
It’s true that the decision to move and the actual move seem “all of a sudden.” However, there has been an ease in the flow of what needed to happen — because I was allowing the pace of the river to guide my pace of change. And it happened to be fast-paced.
It’s as if I had decided to step into the river with both feet.
Things started to happen in support of that decision. Things happened easily, quickly. As if there was support every step of the way.
As much as I could say “I hate packing,” I am coming to believe that stepping into the river with both feet invites quick action on all related fronts. Hey, I could even say, “The universe has my back!”
What has been YOUR pace of change?
What are your favorite ways to slow it down?
Are you ready to pick up your pace?
I’d love to talk with you about stepping into your river at the pace that is best for you!
Click here to schedule some time with me.