It seems like every time we turn around these days we are being bombarded with a slew of changes. Everything from the way we socialize to the way do business has changed. Our children exist in a completely different world then we did and it appears to be an unstoppable machine. If we want to survive then we will have to hold on tight and go along for the ride. But what if amidst all of the changes happening in the world around us, we are confronted with personal changes that make our world feel completely out of control?
How do we roll with the punches and still stand tall? It is human nature to want to know the ‘why’ behind life’s little surprises. We want the rationale so our brains can try to create some sort of normalcy. Often times the answers we find only lead to more questions and confusion. It may seem impossible to absorb the full picture.
But consider this. You are standing in front of a giant mural painted on a wall 50 feet high and 100 feet wide. Now imagine you are only 6 inches away from this wall. What do you see? You can only see a blurry mix of colors and vague shapes. It doesn’t make any sense. What is the point of this art work? How can anyone enjoy it? One can only truly appreciate this mural by taking a new vantage point. By stepping away and going to higher ground the picture now comes into focus. The intricate connection between each part has meaning. It now makes sense. It tells us a story. Regardless of whether the story depicted is a favorable one or not, you can now understand it. The person viewing the mural can take in the elaborate scene with a sense of acceptance and perhaps even appreciation.
In my own personal life, I am currently going through a divorce after 20 years of marriage. My home, my lifestyle, my future all changed just like that. It is incredibly difficult to explain to anyone the panic that can take over when you make the conscious decision to change everything about your world. Others may wonder why I don’t just stay.
All I can say, is that I took a different vantage point and can now see the mural in its full glory and I understand the changes I have to make for a better future. A different and scary future, but better. If you are also facing major life changes, I encourage you to try to do the following:
- Remind yourself that change is inevitable; you can’t stop it so you might as well embrace it.
- Keep an open mind. This may not have been your original plan but it is now your reality. Try to look at it for the opportunity that it is.
- Remember nothing lasts forever. We don’t stay sad forever, we don’t cry forever, we don’t grieve forever. We just don’t. Life does go back to happy again.
- Step out of your comfort zone. Try things you never thought you would. If your life is changing anyway, you may as well see what new things become your new favorites!
- Don’t wallow in self-pity. NEVER play the victim. Your life is yours to mold and grow; you can become anything and do anything. Temporary set-backs do not define you!
The changes we go through may appear to be a blurry mix of colors and vague shapes right now, but as the story unfolds we will notice how each part connects to the next. There is a purpose to all of it. Will we pull flexibility and fortitude out of our hats and move along with it or will we push back in vain? When the changes feel overwhelming, try to remember that sometimes we need to see it from a different view. By stepping back and looking at the picture in its entirety we gain perspective and insight. Sometimes behind the hardest changes awaits a better, stronger, more resilient version of ourselves. Remember, you may not end up where you thought you were going but you will always end up where you were meant to be!