Risk and Transformation
by Janet Shlaes, Ph.D.
“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”
~ Anais Nin
Many years ago when I was teaching a life-planning class, one of my students shared his motivation for making and taking action on a huge life decision. He simply stated that he made his life-altering decision when it felt riskier to perpetuate the status quo than to change. His new course of action felt quite scary to him and would for a period of time, however, it also felt exciting and freeing. Change is like that. You endure the pain inherent in the change process to create a future self that aligns with your highest values.
Transformation is a process that takes place over time. You initially experience the inner stirrings of dissatisfaction with your current state of being in the world. Although your current reality may not feel so great, in some strange way, it feels “normal.” With time, the stirrings, or whispers, become shouts that can no longer be ignored. That’s when it suddenly feels risker and more painful to “remain tight in a bud,” than it does to “blossom.” Although this shift in perception and action may seem to appear out of nowhere, it’s a process that honors your inner timing. I’ve experienced many transformations over time and imagine that you have as well. I find these shifts to simultaneously contain elements of hope, fear, surprise, excitement, engagement, faith and elegance. What about you?
For additional insights and observations, I invite you to check out the following links: