Because of a variety of challenges that had been taking place for me personally, I found myself in that scary but familiar place of transition – the place you are in when an ending of some kind has occurred, but the new beginning has not yet fallen into place. Transition, as William Bridges explains so well in his book, Transitions: Making Sense of Life’s Changes, is a place of confusion and, sometimes, distress. It can be a painful and scary place because what is known and familiar no longer exists and what is coming is not yet visible.Â Often, it feels like we are stuck in place. The more we try to make things happen, the more stuck we end up feeling.
Each time I am in this place I have to remind myself that, confusing and uncomfortable as being in transition is, it is holds the potential for enormous creativity, innovation and new beginnings. In one of my earliest postings, I wrote a series on Change, Transition and Transformation and what has helped me see change as an opportunity for growth and learning. Here, I want to focus on seeing transition as a time to allow the fields of our emotions, thoughts and spirit to lay fallow. If we can see times of transition as times that are meant for us to allow let things unfold naturally, times of transition can turn into time to allow your creative juices to build and enable ideas to simmer until they are ready.
We need to trust in our own inner wisdom instead of trying to find answers externally that can only come from within. And, to do that, we need to be still and have faith. As Dr. Carl Jung wrote, When you are up against a wall, be still and put down roots like a tree, until clarity comes from deeper sources to see over that wall. When you allow the clarity to come naturally from within, you will be amazed at the new horizons you will be able to see.
Similarly, we need to follow the advice of Taoist philosopher Lao Tzu who wrote, Do you have the patience to wait till your mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving till the right action arises by itself?
So, be still, allow your roots to grow and the mud to settle.