"Be who you were meant to be and you'll set the world on fire" - St. Catherine of Sienna

 

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Crisis or Clearout?

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Drama and disaster sells and the media catastrophises most things to get our attention. The word “crisis” is over used and often inappropriately applied. Change and upheaval in life is often seen as a crisis but how we see something depends on how well we handle change. At the time when all seems to be falling apart, we can feel a sense of crisis but after it’s over and we look back we may well view what happened differently because we can see the bigger picture with hindsight and retrospective wisdom.

No matter how much we may dislike it, change is as inevitable as death and taxes and for good reason. A stream that never flows slowly dies. Like beavers we do like to dam up our stream of life with safe shelters. Resisting the flow of change may feel safe but it creates stagnation in our stream. We can either embrace change or resist it. It’s instinctive to resist but those that do are in denial of the true nature of life as a human being.

If we embrace it and be excited in that moment of uncertainty, we let the universe bring its gifts to us with new situations, relationships or careers. If we resist it and rush to put things back to how they were before, we risk missing out on something truly amazing that life wanted to bring to us. Humans often get in their own way through fear and see change as threatening. This creates a strong desire to feel safe and keep things as they are but we may well be doing more harm than good.

Many of us don’t consciously know why we’re here and what we set out to do in this life time. If we don’t know then how can we be certain that, by resisting change, we’re not blocking the unfolding of our life’s purpose? What if we can finally get cracking on our life’s work but we’re in the wrong place right now? What if we need to move house in order meet certain people or change careers? All things being equal, humans don’t budge from where they are unless they are levered out of their safe space and this usually entails some kind of shock, trauma or what we see at the time as a crisis. I’m pretty sure I would still be an engineer (it paid well, I was good at it but I didn’t like it) unless I had become ill and was forced into learning more about healing.

Of course, when upheaval happens, the fear of the unknown often comes with it but not knowing is neither good nor bad. Not knowing can mean “I wonder what's in the next exciting chapter of my life?” or it can mean “I hate this, I must do all that I can to feel safe right now”. The latter is understandable but be aware that the universe has to dismantle what was there in order to create space for new things to flow into our lives. It hates a vacuum; when a space appears then energy will flow into it. If we rush to fill it with fear based automatic reactions, we may be stopping something wonderful from coming and what comes depends on us.

The Law of Attraction is always working; it never stops. We get what our thoughts dwell on the most. Lots of stressful thoughts bring more of the same while genuine and heartfelt positive expectation delivers more things to feel good about. Your desires (both expressed and implied) go out to the warehouse at Universe ‘R’ Us®. In this warehouse is a holding pen with your name on it and it will have been filled by you based on what you have said you want and expect from life.

Even your negative experiences in life have helped because they will have told you what you don’t want and so will have helped you to know what it is you do want. Many of us fill our holding pen with negative stuff because we always expect disaster and meet it half-way and it gets delivered to us promptly and usually when we expect it. Some of us sincerely fill our holding pens with positive desires but block the delivery of them by being uncomfortable with receiving, fearing change, not really expecting things to work out or finding some other way to self-sabotage.

The lorry may set out from the warehouse to deliver our heartfelt desires to us only to have its brakes go screeching on and see it heading back to the depot because fear is the foot on the brake pedal.

“I’m scared to change; I’m frightened to take a chance; I would rather be with someone I don’t love than find out who I am on my own; I’ve always wanted to change career but now I’ve been made redundant, I’d better stick to what feels safe” are common thoughts when life suddenly up-ends itself.

At a time of loss, separation or when we feel uprooted, the instinct is to dive for the nearest safest option to relieve the apparent crisis. But what if we are assessing something as a crisis when it’s just the moment in time when the old is being swept away so that the new can come in? What if this time of uncertainty is the moment when we are neither caterpillar nor butterfly?

The caterpillar has to let go of what it has been and all it has ever known for it to become something beautiful. I’m not proposing that a caterpillar does this consciously but we certainly can. It requires of us that we trust that change is something that we have manifested ourselves and is to be embraced.

If we can look uncertainty square in the eye and say “bring it on” then we create the space for good things to be delivered to us (providing that is what we expect to receive). With hindsight, when change has swept its broom through our lives and the dust has settled, what we called a crisis may well have turned out to be nothing more than a necessary time of transition. A time of clearing out the old so the new can come in. It can’t be done instantly and takes time. How long depends on how much we resist the process and what we expect to come from it. Remember, a “crisis” can be the moment just before something wonderful happens.

 

© Phil Grant unless otherwise attributed