Why we need to keep changing
The ocean never stops. The powerful foamy waves crash, crash, crash despite how many times the shore pushes them away. It will continue to ebb and flow, to change its direction and its power, even with no audience to witness it.
Despite what we convince ourselves, we are always in flux too, ebbing and flowing. But we are less aware because long ago we stopped recording the milestones. We know that at three months, babies start mimicking familiar sounds. Within seven to ten months, they begin to crawl. By 12 or 13 years, we have all of our permanent teeth. But as adults, what are the milestones anymore?
Is it pushing ourselves to attend a class where we had no prior knowledge? Or maybe a milestone is when we find a voice for ourselves when we once allowed ourselves to be pushed aside. Or perhaps we make leaps forward in regards to not comparing ourselves to others. Or when we have diligently moved past heartache or worked through grief. Although we don't have the same audience applauding and encouraging as we did when we first learned to grasp a stuffed elephant - it doesn't make the new changes any less important.
Just because we don't have the same well-researched milestone markers of childhood, it gives us no excuse to not continually be learning, growing, and changing throughout adulthood. Rarely are we truly uncomfortable anymore. Our comfort zone suits us.
It is obvious that we do not change at the same frequency we did as children, but what if we tried? What could we learn?
If we continue to make ourselves more and more uncomfortable, we build our resilience. New experiences, foreign land, new people, new classes, new risks - all nudge us forward. We slowly grow into individuals who not only face change but know how to embrace it. Instead of trying to muddle through, we learn its lessons. To accept it for what it is - our teacher.
We can then silently, graciously, bow our heads to each of our teachers - courage, adversity, disappointment, loneliness, longing, grief - and furthermore, to finally take notice as to who they carve us into.
Be like the ocean. Ebbing and flowing creates resilience. Be powerful and make waves when needed. Learn when to embrace the calm, too. Keep changing. Realize that it does no good to simply stand still.
Malinda Meadows is an Ohio native who was letting grief blanket her life.
She found healing through traveling and nature. She discovered changes of location led to changes in her mindset. It helped her process grief and forge a new path with greater optimism and happiness. Realizing the benefit of deliberate change, she now leads a more balanced and mindful life inspired by simple changes.
She blogs regularly at malindainthesnow.com to help others find change, however small, outside their box in order to live a happier, healthier life.