Sunday, October 19, 2014

Seeds of Change

You know how if you plant seeds,
it takes time for the fruits of the seeds
to push up through the ground’s surface?
Same goes for the changes you want to manifest.
They take time to see.
~Karen Salmansohn

The thing about seeds is that they don’t grow overnight. You can plant them, water them—even talk to them—and you get nothing, or at least that’s how it seems. But there’s business going on underground: roots are forming, intertwining with others for mutual support and growth, while decisions are being made about how many flowers, or apples, or tomatoes will grow from that seed. Then one day, just when you thought nothing was happening—BAM! Signs of life emerge from the ground, reaching for the sunlight. Suddenly, it all makes perfect sense.

So it is with you and me.  Dreams are our seeds of change.  Words are also seeds, and when dropped into the ether, whether spoken or held deeply in our spirit, they grow and bring forth their kind.  Nothing grows without a seed.  Nothing changes without a dream.  And as we move deeper into fall, I’m reminded how temporary it all is. Seasons change. People come and go. Time marches on, waiting for no one, yet moving us forward in rhythm with the silent longings of our hearts.

Just as the Aspen leaves turn green, then gold, falling to the ground with winter’s early warning, I’m reminded that we, too, must first die to one life before experiencing the new growth of spring.  We must clear space; shed a part of what we know and make room for what we want to create. We know it’s coming; we’ve longed for it.  Yet so often we fear the change we seek.

Consider the Aspen—do you think it spends the winter fearing that it will never again experience the joy of having beautiful leaves adorn its branches? Questioning the essence of its being? Wishing things were different? Regretting having done what is in its nature to do? I think not.  It’s rather like they are hibernating, conserving energy for the new cycle of life that will emerge come spring.

Why should it be any different with people? Consider what you do between cycles of change, waiting for your seeds to grow. How do you fill your time? What do you give your energy to?

When you’re moving through change, yet you can’t quite see the end result, do you live in fear that where you are is all your life will ever be? Or do you get busy doing what you can to organize yourself, energize your thoughts, and develop a good plan to support your change as you move forward?

All changes, even the most longed for, 
have their melancholy;
for what we leave behind is part of ourselves;
we must die to one life before we can enter into another.
~Anatole France

Even when change comes from a conscious choice to restructure some aspect of our life—to let go of a dead-end relationship, change careers, start a family, create a new business or embark on a great travel adventure—it is tempting to spend our time in an anxious state, questioning our decisions, worrying that it will all go horribly wrong; expecting signs of new life to emerge immediately on the heels of our decision to change, just after planting the seeds.

But if we could step back and observe ourselves from a distance, we would see that we aren’t done yet: We are still moving toward a destination that we can’t quite see because we’re consumed with the day-to-day experience of our change, slowed by the natural timing of things; like watching seeds grow underground.

Remember: To everything there is a reason, a season, a cycle and right timing. Work with the energy of change, not against it. Be patient and mindful of life’s rhythms.  Use down time to improve where you can, turning weaknesses into strengths.  And prepare yourself, for a bright new tomorrow will emerge just as surely as the snow falls on changing leaves.

Will you be ready?