October 18, 2023
Fall is here! I love this time of year. To me it always feels like the true beginning of a new year, as we shake off the heat and laze of summer and get into new routines. It's a time of renewal and transition. Change can be exciting, but uncomfortable as well. Taking time to reflect on where you are in this season of your life can help open you up to the possibilities of how you want to move forward.
As children, we spend a lot of time in our young lives trying to figure out who we are and our place in the world. We are taught how we’re supposed to behave in our families, our schools, our places of worship, our clubs, and our communities at large. If we’re lucky enough to expand out beyond our community of origin, we learn how all that fits into a larger context. We begin to assess who we are in a new community. We might question what we previously accepted as common knowledge. We figure out a bit more about ourselves and the larger world around us, and decide whether all that we'd been taught is true for us. And on it goes as we explore and expand.
While we grow and learn and become more of who we really are, the larger construct of the society we live in still has quite an impact on us and the choices we make. Many of us started jobs, started families, and put down roots, ready to start the cycle all over again, perhaps without much thought on choosing differently. We reached the finish line! We became adults!
Of course (surprise!) we were only just beginning. We still had much to learn about ourselves, the world and our place in it. We navigated new situations every day, encountered new people, moved, changed jobs, changed schools, changed friends, and changed opinions. Likely you have had moments of great pride, and times where you've been deeply humbled. Our experiences in this life shape every part of us. You are likely a very different person now then you were or thought you would be in your early years. You've weathered many periods of transition, and even though some of them were undoubtedly uncomfortable, if not outright devastating, you moved forward. You became an even deeper version of you.
Perhaps you are currently in the thick of a season of your life full of change and uncertainty. Perhaps you've come to a period of relative calm. At either end of the spectrum, we can reflect, and continue to evolve.
The energy of the fall season can feel conflicting. I know I'm feeling both energized by upcoming projects, and simultaneously stuck without a clear sense of what lies ahead and how to get there. I'm reminded to go inward, and take note of all that I have accomplished so far. How many seasons of change have I already moved through? How many have you been through?
As you take stock of where you are right now, are you feeling excited about new prospects? Or, perhaps you are feeling restless, and unsure of which way is forward? You might even be feeling stuck or drained by the changes happening around you. Wherever you're at with your feelings in this season of your life, accept where you are without judgement, open yourself to possibilities and allow whatever comes up to teach you. Remember how many times you've been here before. Be gentle with yourself.
And then, rest.