Change is not easy, perhaps because we are evolutionarily programmed against it. This makes sense, given that the survival of the species likely depended on continuing to do what works.
I read a research article a few months back that said that only adolescents have brains wired to accept, approve of, and seek out change. Striking out on their own, the adolescent population does not have the brain that resists and mistrusts change, and the theory posits that it is because adolescence is the most favorable time of life to try something new.
Think back to the days of humans living in small tribal groups. Upon mating and having children, a state of species vulnerability occurs. Remaining where one is, doing what has worked so far, was the best way we could ensure successful rearing of the next generation.
There are some down sides to both of these things today. Adolescents can do really stupid things due to their lack of fear, feelings of invulnerability and desire to change. Adults can do really stupid things due to their fear of change, feelings of vulnerability, and desire to keep things the same. These traits that helped our ancestors stay alive so that we could all be here today are the very traits that make it very difficult to go about escaping group-think, engaging in a life-filled spirituality, listening to our intuition and stepping outside of pre-assigned roles.
It helps me when I realize that the fear of change and the looking outward for social cues and approval is simply genetic programming. I don’t have to obey it. It has its purpose and its place, that desire to do what everyone else is doing, that desire to avoid change, but it is not always best.
I see where I am going. It is crystal clear, so real I think I could touch it. For many years, I thought it was a life I could not have. On the day I woke up, I realized it was the life that was mine. It’s just that I had wandered far from it.
I hold the vision gently within my heart. And I keep taking steps forward. Even when they knock me down. Even when I trip over myself. Even when it’s uphill. Even when it’s cold. Sometimes it takes me a long time between steps. Sometimes I have to just hold my ground for awhile until I’m ready to lift another foot. One step. One step. One step. I learn to trust the process.
And one day on the path I look back and realize that the place where I began, that place that I thought I would never have the strength to leave, is now so far behind me, behind hills and valleys, streams and forests, that I can’t even see it anymore.