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The Only Thing Constant in Life is Change

With an Open Heart

This post is part of The Awakened Heart Project

Week 5: The Only Thing Constant in Life is Change

“Some changes look negative on the surface, but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge.”

–Eckhart Tolle

 

Change is Inevitable

It’s simply inevitable. Change is something that will happen no matter how hard we try to stop it. Change is a part of the world we live in. With every passing moment, things change. So why fight it?

Sometimes, the changes that take place in our lives are slow, and sometimes even anticipated. While other times, the changes are abrupt. Abrupt changes can throw us into a place of fear and uncertainty. This place may be a place of darkness. Even anticipated changes may make us feel fear or anxiety for what’s to come. Moreover, changes (even anticipated ones) don’t always produce an outcome that we favor. For instance, ending a relationship: even if you were the one that ended it, it doesn’t always feel great; you may still have a period of great sadness and maybe even depression. Or, lets say, losing your job: you needed that job; without it you can’t pay your bills, and so, clouds of darkness begin to shadow you’re life.

You may begin to question whether you made the right decision. You may begin to wonder why, if this was what you wanted, do you feel so sad. You may wonder, why? Why did this happen to you? You didn’t deserve this.

The Law of Change

There is a law of winter, spring, summer, and fall. And no, I’m not talking about the seasons. We go through phases in life: periods of darkness, and periods of great joy and happiness. Every year, at one point or another, you find yourself in a “winter phase”, a rough period or darkness. It may seem there is little growth here, that everything is old, dead, and bad. You feel sadness and frustration about your circumstances.

winter darkness
winter-park

Maybe you even think, this is it, this is my life, and it’s going to stay like this forever. But in time, as the season always do change, the spring phase emerges, things begin to get a little better, life becomes a little brighter, and you see growth, and renewal on the horizon.

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Soon, everything begins to fall into place, and you’re back in your summer phase, where everything in life is grand, beautiful, and exciting. This is great! But, just as the seasons always come and go, so will this phase. But don’t fret. Nothing lasts forever. Fall and winter phases have their benefit in your life. And although they are dark and dreary, they will not last. Give it time. Spring and summer will come again. Remember what we talked about in week 2: Growth can come from places you thought were dead, barren, and disappointing. If you want to grow as a person, and improve your life, accept that there is going to be some pain. Constant comfort and familiarity never produced growth, insight, or awakened hearts.

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So don’t fight these changes and phases. The harder you fight, the longer it will take for you to see the light in the tunnel, the new world around you, and the beauty in the experiences that stand before you. Every bit of change brings uncertainty, and this can bring on fear and anxiety. But know, that even in these changes, know that the winter phase will always pass, spring will come, and summer will follow. So ride with it. Use the dark phases to evaluate things, to make some more changes, and create the life you want. Yes, things change around you every day, but you can help direct these changes too. The choices that you make may help bring the spring phase on a little sooner. It’s your life. Make it what you want to be.

sunshine1

“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. A week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny.” 

-Paulo Coelho, The Devil and Miss Prym

Reflection:

  • Recall a period of darkness from you past. When did the clouds begin to fade?
  • What changes in your life seemed to be the worst things that could happen, only to being on immense happiness when the winter phase past.
  • What times of darkness were blessing in disguise?
  • If you’re sitting in a winter phase, what can you do to take back some control, to make some changes, for your benefit?
  • Can you find the silver lining?
  • Remember, every phase changes, nothing is permanent.

*Many of the ideas for the awakened heart project come from the book “How to Be Happy, Dammit: A Cynic’s Guide to Spiritual Happiness” by Karen Salmansohn

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The Awakened Heart Project

Registration for The Awakened Heart Project is closed for the year. However, follow the blog for the opportunity to participate in 2014. With An Open Heart will be going through some major changes in the coming months! Stay tuned!!!

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