October? Already? How did that happen?
Maybe it's the season, but lately I've been thinking about changes, and what a friend calls "Landing Places." These are the places we discover, and come to rest in, following upheaval, forced or voluntary. Change isn't always difficult, but sometimes it can force us to live in a whole new way. Maybe we've lost employment, moved away, experienced illness, loss of loved one, or maybe our last child has left the nest. Now what? Being thrown out of the comfort zone can leave us feeling sad, angry, or even disoriented, but here's the thing: we can find our way to a new
comfort zone. This kind of thing seems to happen in stages, each with a unique time table based on our own unique circumstances and needs.
First we spin a little (or a lot). We feel uprooted, vulnerable, or even disoriented. It's okay. It won't last forever. Besides, you can learn a lot about yourself by watching how your react during a spin. Pay attention because here is where your body, heart, and soul are talking to you, telling you what you deeply need. Does Facebook make you angry, depressed, or lonely? You're not the only one
. Maybe you need support. Get it. Turn off social media, call
a friend or visit with someone in person
. Do you feel overwhelmed by phone calls, emails, texts, and social media? Maybe you need solitude
. Create some. Set aside some time for yourself, even if you have to get up earlier than everyone else to do it. Turn off your phone for a while, keep your inbox cleaned out, and unsubscribe to your hearts content to email notices you don't really need. Are you more emotional than usual and feeling sad? Maybe you need good old fashioned comforting
. Everyone does at times. By paying attention to your reactions, you can use the spin to figure out what you really need. Then, take healthy action on your own behalf. If you need help, tell a trusted friend, find a counselor, or share what's happening with a religious or spiritual leader if you have one. You don't have to go it alone. This spin is temporary, and, if we can focus on what we are trying to tell ourselves is needed in our deepest heart, we invite healing. That's how it works for me, anyway. No spin lasts forever.
Then we breathe. We coast for a while; not really spinning, but still not feeling the ground. We are simply riding the wave, and we need this, too. Some people call it limbo. I like to think of this as cocoon time. Do you think the caterpillar even knows about those wings she's sprouting? Probably not, but they sprout anyway, right? For now, just rest.
And then, my friends, we land. Our feet find the ground and we begin to find our stride on a new, and often unexpected, path. That new path may be a job, school, a hobby, a creative endeavor, or lifestyle change. That
is our landing place. Maybe we were aiming for it, or maybe it came as a complete surprise, but either way it brings healing, energizes us, and provides an avenue for meaningful action.
A landing place can restore our sense of direction and purpose. If you think about it, you may notice that you have had several throughout your life.
Right now, mine is art