Benjamin Franklin’s famous quote, “the only things certain in life are death and taxes” left out one thing: CHANGE. It happens whether we like it or not. Even when we decide not to make a change, we change, and everything around us changes. That’s why things that served us once no longer do. In fact, we expect it. We expect expansion and growth. Can you imagine if, day after day, a flower bud remained a flower bud and never bloomed? And things must also come to an end to make space for new beginnings and new possibilities.
Resistance to it is what I find so curious. Why are we so inclined towards choosing the safety net that we clearly know causes us pain and, at the very least, atrophy?
We tend to focus more on the possibility that things may get worse; that we might fail. We lack trust in our own power to make things great. So we don’t act, and we stay alive for another day, month, year, decade, lifetime, filling our minds, and more accurately, every cell in our body, with justifications. We feel dis-ease.
When something no longer serves me, as scary as change may be, the idea of that very thing staying the same for the rest of my life, or even for the next few years, or months, is even scarier. At times, downright horrifying. It comes down to choosing one type of scary over another. Choosing safety, I find, is disempowering, because typically, it cost me something really big: a part of me that wants to live a powerful, authentic life. Letting go and choosing change, assuming it is in line with my truth, is Empowering with a capital E, because I trusted myself and the process. I listened to, and surrendered to my inner voice. And that’s the thing. No matter what happens, when my fear is harnessed and I make the leap, I’ve made a huge deposit into my own Empowerment.
Stepping into the unknown can be a bit scary, it is exciting as well. I find that the very idea of it, when a big one is called for, changes the very pattern of my breath, causing my heart and belly to ache. I am scared shitless. And I feel more alive. Facing the unknown can be like facing death. In fact, it seems many of us would rather face death than the unknown. What we are talking about here – change – does not usually translate into literal death but the end of a part of our world as we know it and into a new one. It translates into a chance at feeling a wide range of emotions (this is a positive because what is the alternative?), experiencing new things, growing, expanding, getting rid of dead weight, and dare I say, becoming happier and more satisfied. And perhaps getting what we want in the process.