How many times have you heard the expression, "Change is hard"? All of us have heard these words more times than we care to remember. I thought and said them a lot during the 26 years that I worked at a small liberal arts college because much of my job centered on making change happen. While I liked to think it was change for the better, much of the time I was acutely aware of how difficult it is for some people to accept change.
Change has been on my mind a lot lately because of my recent retirement, an event that I planned for months, but nevertheless, is a big change. We face many changes and challenges in our lifetimes. Some that we've all experienced to varying degrees are: graduating from school; going off to college; getting married; new job; new home; new baby; empty nest; aging parents; serious health issues; divorce; loss of loved ones; loss of a job; broken friendships; downsizing ... the list goes on. Some of these changes we prepare for and embrace, others are thrust upon us.
The question, then, is not "if" change comes, but "when" it comes, how will we face it? A lot, of course, depends on the event itself. Happy changes are usually pretty easy; unplanned changes are usually not. I've always believed that how we handle change will help determine the quality of our lives as well as our health. We know it's inevitable, so it's in our best interest to meet the challenges of change head on.
Sounds easy, huh? In actuality, it's not, but we don't have to face these things alone. That's why we gravitate to communities of like-minded people for support - our families, our churches, our social circles and yes, even our online friends. In addition to sharing a passion for photography, I've found a caring group of friends on the internet. This is what the Focusing on Life community is all about: caring for and about one another, encouraging one another as we pursue our dreams, supporting one another in time of need. Change is inevitable; it's how we handle it that makes a difference.
How about you? We've all experienced change. Change is sometimes beautiful ... and sometimes not. As Stephanie reminded us in her beautifully written post, our lives are books with one chapter following another. How does your creative gene react in times of change? Is it kicked into high gear or put in reverse? Mine tends to hit reverse. And yet when I do allow the creative wheels to start turning again, I find that it actually helps clear my head, re-establish my self-confidence.
Please share with us the pearls of wisdom you've earned as you've moved from one chapter of your life to another. What did you learn that might help all of us? Your words today might be just the words someone in the FOL
The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.
--- Alan Wilson Watts
Oh! And don't forget to post your ATTRACTION TO ABSTRACTION pictures on our Flickr page.