Do you feel it? There is a change in the air. The sun is a bit brighter and warmer, the air is losing its crispness, and the flowers are beginning to bloom! Where I live I know that Spring is coming by the position of the sun at sunset while I hear the cries of the returning osprey to their nest. When I feel stuck in life I reflect on the example of Spring and the newness it brings.
Have you ever reflected on what the earliest humans felt and thought as they observed their environment? Did they feel they were living a rewarding life? I can only imagine the confusion and fear of that first autumn and winter as our ancestors wondered, probably in fear, why the trees were dying, why the crops stopped growing and the green plants turned brown. Where and why did the animals go, and why have the birds flown away? I would imagine their feelings turning to despair as time moved on and the weather worsened with cold, snow and darkness. I would imagine that our ancestors felt stuck in life with these unknown changes occurring. I feel stuck in life just imagining what they were feeling. If you didn't know that spring and summer were returning, what would you be thinking, feeling and doing? Imagine our ancestors' feelings when the climate began to change as spring neared. The animals returning, birds arriving in the skies, trees coming back to life! Can you imagine?! Our ancestors must have been in awe, wonder, surprise, gratitude .... All is once again well with the world, and with them. It's as if nature took a little baby step to make big changes. Over time they would learn to read nature's signs and adjust their lives accordingly, but imagine what that learning process was like.The joys in the revelations and new-found knowledge must have been incredible! Truly they were living a rewarding life!
How are you affected by the arrival of spring? Do you sense the newness? When I feel stuck in life I think of what I can do to make the most of spring. What is it that I can learn from Spring? As was true for our ancestors, spring is a time for us to be filled with awe and wonder at new possibilities. Regardless of what has happened in our lives, as nature is re-born, we too are re-born since we have opportunities to do things differently; to change. But how can I change? I take a little baby step when I feel stuck in life.
Most of us know what it’s like to feel stuck in life. One of the reasons why we feel stuck is because of our own thinking. We convince ourselves that we are stuck. A counselor whom I have known now for many years, Terrance Gorski, wrote this quote: "I am capable of thinking ...yet I am not my thoughts; I am the thinker of my thoughts; therefore I can change what I feel and still be me." In other words, since I am the one who thinks and creates my thoughts, it is in my power and capacity to change my thoughts. In so doing I change the way I feel. This in no way changes the events we live through, but if I can change how I think, and also feel, about the life event, than it no longer controls me; I empower myself by controlling me.
Just as spring brings newness from the dead of winter, changing our thoughts has the power to bring newness to our lives. As an aid to finding a rewarding life, here are some of my little baby steps:
- Spend ten minutes in quiet thinking about those areas in your life you want to change. Make a list.
- On your list write down your thoughts/feelings about those areas of your life.
- What is the new thought you need to have to make the necessary changes? Ask someone for help in doing this.
- Practice daily, hourly, or by the minute if necessary, thinking your new thoughts.
Focusing on the power that we have within ourselves allows us to change our thoughts, feelings, and therefore perspective on ourselves as well as on the world around us. When I feel stuck in life, I imitate the newness of spring and create a newness of beauty and a rewarding life within myself.
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