“One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time.” — Andre Gidé
Here’s what I’m noticing this week: People in a weird, in-between time, where they’ve left their old reality but haven’t quite arrived in their new one yet. They’re feeling scared, at times overwhelmed, and having a hard time connecting to a sense of trust that things will actually work out well.
Been there? I certainly have!
When I was 32, I got dumped by the man I thought I was going to marry. There was no going back to that relationship (I believe the words “over my dead body!” leapt out of my mouth when a friend asked me if I’d get back together if I could). Yet the road ahead seemed so unsure. What if it was too late for me? What if I never learned how to trust again?
Luckily, I had enrolled in a year-long yoga teacher training that started 2 weeks before the axe fell. All that time on the mat, letting my feelings arise and start to dissipate on their own, kept me sailing over sometimes very rocky seas to the other side: Two weeks before the program ended, I met the man who is now my husband.
The moral is this: Giving yourself the space to stay present to your thoughts and emotions will ultimately lead you to exactly where you need and want to go—some place even better than what you would cook up for yourself if you had a magic wand.
Which is not to say that it’s easy. Here’s a quote from one of my all-time favorite teachers and writers, Pema Chödrön:
“Anxiety, heartbreak, and tenderness mark the in-between state. It’s the kind of place we usually want to avoid. The challenge is to stay in the middle rather than buy into struggle and complaint. The challenge is to let it soften us rather than make us more rigid and afraid.”
Because when you’re able to stay open enough to learn and grow, every seemingly sucky situation – particularly those where you feel pushed out of the nest or even abandoned – is precisely what you need to become more awake, more alive, and to dare to move toward the things you really, truly want.
(If you’re looking for a written resource to dealing with those in between places, I highly recommend The Places that Scare You, by Pema Chodron, and The Wisdom of a Broken Heart, by Susan Piver. Both are miraculous.)
If you’re in your own in-between place, email me and ask for a complementary strategy session, which amounts to 60 minutes of time focused on helping you see where you are and where you want to go more clearly. (I keep space in my calendar for one or two of these a week — the time is there for the taking! Just reply to this email newsletter with “let’s talk” in the subject line.)
And when you start to think differently, you start to take different actions. Which is when you get different – and way better – results. There’s no better time than now to start thinking different!
One thought on “Think differently about the places in between”
I would love to sign up for complimentary strategy session. I can’t access your email so leaving this in comments. HOPE to connect! Thank you for this powerful piece and your offer. Leslie