Is it just me or does change seem frustratingly slow at times?
Whether it’s a journey up the mountain or a path to enlightenment … change can seem slow. I reckon, however, that some of the best change is really gentle and unhurried… it takes time.
Our impatience with change is usually about pain relief. Of course we want to relieve our suffering. That’s understandable, however trying to force ourselves to ‘get there’ can leave you on Petrea’s ‘I’ll be happy when trip’ where your happiness is constantly put off to a future time.
It begs the question… Can you find peace in the midst of a painful journey?
Some people see the mountain but it appears unreachable. On a bad day it all seems hopeless. “I’ll never make it” or “What’s the use” can wander across the mind. On a good day, they may still feel challenged but reach for skills they carry in their back pack to ease the gradient. Meditation, breathing, relationships, Quest for Life and liniment can all come in handy at times like this.
If you feel overwhelmed, you might also consider viewing life as a mountain range rather than one big unreachable peak and celebrating each small summit as you reach it.
A word of caution about ‘mountaintop’ epiphanies which can seem swift when in actual fact you have spent a lifetime climbing up the mountain and the last step gets you to the ‘peak’ of awareness. In the excitement of reaching the summit it is possible to forget what it took to get there.
Some people become attached to these kinds of ‘peak experiences’. I once had a teacher who said to me “during meditation, you may reach the heights of bliss but this is only an accident… therefore one must become accident prone” (i.e. stay on the path and you may reach the peak, but the important thing is the path not the peak…)
I have become a great fan of the organic kind of change that happens slowly and by witnessing what is without forcing or pushing. What may emerge out of this awareness is a change so slow and imperceptible that you are not aware it has occurred until after it has happened.
On that day you notice something new and say to yourself… “Hey, I don’t do that anymore” or “oh wow, I would never had said that 5 years ago” or “I am so good”… Has that happened to you?
That’s the satisfying kind of change that takes months or years of walking, climbing and resting and then climbing some more. It’s about keeping your eyes on the path instead of constantly on the peak. We need goals so it’s natural to envision the peak, however, isn’t it equally important to enjoy the walk?
There is a lovely quote from Gabriel Garcia Marquez which reads, ‘I have learned that everybody wants to live at the top of the mountain without realizing that true happiness lies in the way it is climbed’…
Wishing you all happiness in your climb-it change …
Margie is a somatic psychotherapist and counsellor providing psychotherapy services to the people of the Central Coast and Sydney. Margie lives on the beautiful Central Coast with her husband, two children, two dogs and a cat.
Over the last 12 years, Margie has also been engaged in the design, delivery and marketing of transformational learning programs. During this time she has regularly facilitated personal development programs for up to 50 people on weekend workshops, week-long intensives and advanced programs of 3-4 months.
Margie has a Graduate Certificate in Adult Education from UTS, Diploma in Psychotherapy from the Australian College of Contemporary Somatic Psychotherapy and qualifications in somatic therapy, executive coaching and relationship counselling.
Margie has a passion for personal development and regards people with respect, empathy and compassion in the belief that while we all do the best we can, a little bit more kindness and care can lead to even greater peace and joy in life.