Beginnings and endings
Firsts and lasts
Starts and finishes
Before and After
Thresholds to cross
Roads to travel
The in betweens, the middle
In all of it, may you find meaning on your journey
Seeking and finding beauty, joy, light amidst the middles and transitions
Awake to transformation unfolding.
“Come dress yourself in love, let the journey begin.” – Francesca da Rimini
“Whatever it is you’re seeking won’t come in the form you’re expecting.”― Haruki Marukami
“What might we learn if we listen, if we wade in—unafraid, untethered, and uninhibited—ready to become the ones we were created to become.”― Kaitlin B. Curtice, Native: Identity, Belonging, and Rediscovering God
Flipped upside down
Resistance, friction, flow
Different yet familiar
Connected, present, complete
Untether, malleable, made new
The journey is one of becoming
Transitions, thresholds, transformation
“If you’re willing to pay attention to and dialogue with what’s happening inside of you, you’ll find that your body already knows the answers about how to live a full, present, connected, and healthy life.”― Hillary L. McBride, The Wisdom of Your Body: Finding Healing, Wholeness, and Connection through Embodied Living
“It is when we are in transition that we are most completely alive.” – William Bridges
“CONSIDERING THAT WE HAVE TO DEAL WITH ENDINGS all our lives, most of us handle them poorly. This is in part because we misunderstand them and take them either too seriously or not seriously enough. We take them too seriously by confusing them with finality—that’s it, all over, never more, finished! We see them as something without sequel, forgetting that they are the first phase of the transition process and a precondition of self-renewal. At the same time, we fail to take them seriously enough. Because they scare us, we try to avoid them.”― William Bridges, Transitions: Making Sense of Life’s Changes
Changes in seasons
The bridge of transitions
Where waiting resides
Letting go required
Unsettled ground to stand on
Allow the struggle to do its work in you
And invite joy daily in rituals and practices
Summer to fall
Contraction to expansion
Stagnation to momentum
The sacred space of self-renewal, fruition and harvest
The work of transformation
Fruits of the labor certain.
“In other words, change is situational. Transition, on the other hand, is psychological. It is not those events, but rather the inner reorientation and self-redefinition that you have to go through in order to incorporate any of those changes into your life. Without a transition, a change is just a rearrangement of the furniture. Unless transition happens, the change won’t work, because it doesn’t “take.”― William Bridges, Transitions: Making Sense of Life’s Changes
“Learning never exhausts the mind.” – Leonardo da Vinci
“There is no end to education. It is not that you read a book, pass an examination, and finish with education. The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti
The school year is coming quickly to a close.
Weeks until summer break.
Commencement speeches for graduation.
Advice, celebration, reflection, anticipation.
Prepping and planning meticulously for the future.
As we get older, we realize that class is in session our entire life.
The journey we thought was linear is circular, seasonal, spiraling.
A mystery requiring trust and faith, a sense of humor, a bucket of grace.
If we think we are done, we are done.
Done growing, learning, becoming.
There are still lessons to be learned, unlearned, applied, forgotten.
Choose a growth and beginner’s mindset.
Ready and willing to inquire, listen, change, grow.
What will you discover today?
How will you contribute?
What will you take?
Will you be present or race by another day?
Class is in session.
“Change is inevitable. Growth is optional” – John Maxwell
“April hath put a spirit of youth in everything.” – William Shakespeare
“The earth was all before me. With a heart
Joyous, nor scared at its own liberty,
I look about; and should the chosen guide
Be nothing better than a wandering cloud,
I cannot miss my way.”― William Wordsworth, The Prelude
Those moments before spring, tipping point to awakening, the prelude;
The anticipation of the kiss, the unfolding, the sweetness within reach;
Our winters to springs;
Within and around;
Alone and connected to all at the same time;
Joy in the prelude, the postlude, the new beginning;
Celebration and exultation in each day.
“Here must thou be, O man,
Strength to thyself — no helper hast thou here —
Here keepest thou thy individual state:
No other can divide with thee this work,
No secondary hand can intervene
To fashion this ability. ‘Tis thine,
The prime and vital principle is thine
In the recesses of thy nature, far
From any reach of outward fellowship,
Else ’tis not thine at all.” ― William Wordsworth, The Prelude
“Bliss it was in that dawn to be alive But to be young was very heaven.”— William Wordsworth
“Beauty is always knocking, we just forget to let it in.” – Sarah Blondin
“A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up bones.” – Proverbs 17:22
The weather forecast this week is temperatures into the 40s and 50s.
Soon the snowpack will become puddles.
The dormant grass exposed.
The light will linger longer.
The sun stronger.
The earth warms, beginning the thaw.
Spring is on the cusp of leading the dance of shifting seasons.
Winter certainly is not done but closer to the finish than the start.
Blessed are those with a cheerful heart in all seasons.
Who find the gift of winter solace and of spring renewal.
May you see and immerse in beauty in all seasons.
In transitions when one foot is in winter and one in spring.
Dry bones come to life.
A cheerful heart good medicine to heal, restore and transform.
“Beauty is the illumination of your soul.” – John O’Donohue
“Is not this a true autumn day? Just the still melancholy that I love—that makes life and nature harmonize.” – George Eliot
“Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance.” – Carl Sandburg
Summer lingers and leads the dance a bit longer. The last waltz coming as summer begins the release to fall. Temperatures swing from 40s in the morning to 80s in the afternoon. Early sunsets shortening the light span of each day. The grass growth slows, preparing for rest, dormancy and rejuvenation.
As summer takes its last waltz and fall appears in one leaf turning to brilliant orange followed by the next and next, enter the gift of transition time. Grateful for what was then releasing it to sweet memory, opening arms to ready for what is to come.
Each season builds and weaves into the next, often for reasons we do not know in the now. Trust the surety and process of seasons, transitions and new beginnings. While often not on our time, never failing and always the right time. Awaken and enter the flow, ease and glide of the last waltz.
“Go, sit upon the lofty hill, And turn your eyes around, Where waving woods and waters wild Do hymn an autumn sound. The summer sun is faint on them— The summer flowers depart— Sit still— as all transform’d to stone, Except your musing heart.” – Elizabeth Barrett Browning, The Autumn
“As each day comes to us refreshed and anew, so does my gratitude renew itself daily. The breaking of the sun over the horizon is my grateful heart dawning upon a blessed world. ” — Adabella Radici
“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. Wayne Dyer
According to research, “mindfulness meditation has been reported to produce positive effects on psychological well-being that extend beyond the time the individual is formally meditating. Over the last three decades mindfulness meditation practices have been increasingly incorporated into psychotherapeutic programs, to take advantage of these benefits. A large body of research has established the efficacy of these mindfulness-based interventions in reducing symptoms of a number of disorders, including anxiety, depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, and chronic pain, as well as improving well-being and quality of life. Mindfulness meditation involves the development of awareness of present-moment experience with a compassionate, non-judgmental stance. It has been suggested that this process is associated with a perceptual shift, in which one’s thoughts and feelings are recognized as events occurring in the broader field of awareness.”
To simplify the practice of meditation, I use Insight Timer every morning with guided meditation or music to set the course for the day as well as listening to relaxing music before bed. Our mind naturally resists change, but we can change our minds. Change your mind, change your life. Stop trying to change others, change your life. We don’t need to be in a constant state of fight or flight.
Meditation, gratitude and optimism are powerful practices to create a daily state filled with joy, light and ease amidst challenging circumstances and people. Rise above by going within.
“Things do not change; we change.” – Henry David Thoreau
“Not in his goals but in his transitions man is great. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
“We resist transition not because we can’t accept the change, but because we can’t accept letting go of that piece of ourselves that we have to give up when and because the situation has changed.”― William Bridges, The Way of Transition: Embracing Life’s Most Difficult Moments
In many cultures, the black butterfly is a symbol of transition, renewal and rebirth. A dying to the old, creating space for the new to enter. When we cling to the familiar, limiting narratives and beliefs, we waste our energy, get stuck in the past and miss the gift of new beginnings.
We are built to grow, evolve, expand, change and redirect when the road becomes a dead end. Stop circling the culdesac. Move forward into unknowing, to new beginnings, fresh starts.
The Bridges Transition Model describes the three stages of transition – endings, neutral zone and new beginnings. Allow the neutral zone to do its work and don’t get stuck there. Allow new beginnings to take center stage and welcome you home to yourself.
“transition always starts with an ending. To become something else, you have to stop being what you are now; to start doing things a new way, you have to end the way you are doing them now; and to develop a new attitude or outlook, you have to let go of the old”― William Bridges, Transitions: Making Sense of Life’s Changes
“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”- Wayne Dyer
“Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next.” – Gilda Radner
Ease into the unknown, embrace uncertainty, hold what’s necessary and release what weighs you down, what blocks your path. Lessons often unfold in hindsight with time and distance, with no recourse to change course. Awareness beckons, invites and welcomes learning in real time, in the very moment, deepening moments and amplifying time.
Awareness first. Lessons in the moment. Change certain, growth optional. Choose growth, expansion, gratitude and joy. Fight the good fight.
“When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves.” – Viktor E. Frankl