Why change is so hard
Life doesn’t happen in a straight line, neither do relationships. There is no instruction manual, however, there are patterns that emerge. These patterns can be helpful in navigating our life and relationships. I break what I have observed into four universal stages: Discernment, Discomfort, Disarmament, and Discovery.
This is our posture before we engage in change. When we are in discernment we are deciding if the inconvenience and even pain of change will be worth it. This stage is full of potential and it also feels like a place of safety, even if we know that the work of change will be worth it. We may remain in Discernment for years before deciding to take the next step. Maybe this is where you are right now as you decide how to proceed with your healing journey.
This is where we find ourselves once we have begun the complicated and sometimes messy work of change. Using the metaphor of armor, this is when we realize tha
t the armor that has protected us is no longer serving us on our journey. The shield is too heavy to carry into the next stage of our development, but we are not quite ready to set it down. This is often where people are when they are when they reach out for help.
In this stage we finally drop the armor that once served us, but is now just weighing us down and holding us back. When we drop this armor we are astonished to see that we are not immediately dispatched by a dragon. There is a lightness and freedom here that we may believe is too good to be true. Many times we do believe it is too good to be true. How can we show this much vulnerability and still have safety in our lives and relationships? It is not too good to be true but without the right support in this stage particularly, we may move right back into Discernment or Discomfort. I love walking alongside my clients as they do the work to remain disarmed and move into the next stage.
Finally, comes the
stage of Discovery. This is a place of great surprise, unpredictability and healing. The courageous work of change has happened and now it is time to marvel in your new creation. Once we have reached this stage we are not finished with our journey but, we are now ready to level up and take on the next challenge. Our next challenge may have some similarities to the last but once we have reached this transformative stage, we will never have to face these challenges in the same way again.
Whatever stage you currently find yourself in, individually or in your relationships, I hope that you will take the next vulnerable step. If I can accompany you on that next step on your path, please reach out and let me know how I can support you.