The other day, I had a chance to catch up with a dear friend.
We chatted about the challenges of being in a world that’s so good at making you doubt yourself. We ruminated over how to best help our children navigate the external pressures of conformity that society insists must be ’the only way’.
Then she said these beautiful words:
“As you go through life, you may be given a sacred moment. When you are on your knees in deep loss and confusion. Something that cannot be “fixed” with a “positive thought”. You can’t talk your way out of it, go on a vacation to make it ok, read the right book - everything our culture says you need to do for “self care”. You might get a little ebb of peace, but there comes again a flow of friction and confusion.
I got a glimpse that you are continuing to make the choice to continue to boldly walk into this life, and be in it fully despite the confusion and discomfort.”
So often, we set the expectation that everything will feel exactly same as we transition through major stages of life. Those unmet expectations create an internal conflict:
Between your former self, and the person who is emerging from these new experiences.
But when we are able to reconcile discomfort as being part of this process, that’s when we can bravely walk through life’s adversities and come out on the other side with a renewed perspective.
One that’s shaped around who we’re growing into, not the idealized role we’ve been categorically casted in.
One that celebrates the fact that we are all learning, as long as we’re trying.
And so, I encourage you to think about any recent struggles you have had, personally and professionally. Applaud the choice you’ve made to lean into the discomfort, because you’ve given yourself an opportunity to reach places you never thought were possible.
Recognize the strength you hold to ask for help when you needed it the most, because you understand that learning doesn't happen in a vacuum.
One day, you will look back to connect the dots, and make sense of it all.
Right now, you may not know where this life will take will take you, but one thing’s for sure: