“Every positive change–every jump to a higher level of energy and awareness–involves a rite of passage. Each time to ascend to a higher rung on the ladder of personal evolution, we must go through a period of discomfort, of initiation. I have never found an exception.” - Dan Millman, author of Way of the Peaceful Warrior
I love this quote and the re-frame he offers: That even in the midst of the discomfort, you can know that this is initiation. This is you growing into something more — deeper, wiser, more awake + more compassionate. It’s a lovely big-picture way to hold whatever big shifts are going on in your life right now.
I spoke with a friend yesterday and when she asked me how I was, I found myself saying, “I don’t have words for it yet, but I know that I am experiencing a shift. I am moving towards a different way of being as a creative person + teacher. I am moving toward something more intimate and grounded, something that feeds me in deep ways and creates even more powerful connections to the people I serve.”
After I said it I was surprised by how true it felt. I didn’t even realize that I was in the midst of change until the words came out of my mouth! But there it was.
I would guess that if we are awake + conscious in our lives, that we are almost always in a state of becoming. Becoming more ourselves by honoring who we are in bigger and deeper ways.
But what I want to acknowledge today is that the awkward messy phase of an initiation is full of discomfort and doubt. We will question everything — if we are on the right path, if we are up to the task, or if we should just quit altogether. It’s tempting to judge ourselves especially, to say we are lost or broken. You’re a mess, get your shit together, why can’t you be like so and so… But I’m here to say this: that life is often that messy middle place and our capacity to find comfort (and perspective) there can make all the difference.
One of the best ways to do this is to reach out. Not to just anyone, but someone you trust to hold big things with you. Someone who can listen deeply + maybe get you out of the weeds to see something bigger. This might be a friend or family member. Or it might be a therapist or a coach. If we can reach out to one another from that space of uncertainty, we will feel less alone and we are more likely to move through with grace and courage.
What about you?
Are you in the midst of a shift? Are you moving toward a new version of yourself?
Complete the following sentence in the comments below: As the new year approaches, I feel myself becoming more _____________.
Perhaps if we can all hold each other’s wobbly in-between space, we can find more strength to move through the fire.