“When was the last time
You did something for the first time?”
-Danielle LaPorte, The Fire Starter Sessions
You don’t need closure in order to start over. You just need to decide to live.
It’s a New Year and most of us celebrate this as a new beginning. It’s a time we look to make resolutions about going to the gym more, eating healthier, being more present, doing what we love, worrying less or giving up bad habits. And while beginnings are vital to our growth, I think it’s especially important at this time of year to address the idea of closure and how we don’t always need an “end” to start over again.
From a young age we’re taught a simple time principle: there’s a beginning, middle and end. There’s a beginning, middle and end to our school years. There’s the day we decide to make a change and the faux deadline we give ourselves to get there. Chapters make up books. Days make up our work week…hello Monday and Friday! Even this newsletter you’re reading is prey to the proverbial time parameter. But here’s the problem with this universal ideology: sometimes our experience cannot be, I repeat-CANNOT BE-wrapped up into a clear, beginning, middle and end. Sometimes we’ll feel like we have too many beginnings, too many false starts, where we’re continually trying something new, hoping it’s the one thing we need to get us to the next chapter or place in our lives. Or perhaps we feel like a failure because we never follow through with the middle and end. Sometimes, we’ll get lost in the middle, this uncomfortable limbo that makes us wonder why we started, if this space will ever end, if we will get the “more” or “end” we desire. Maybe we even wonder if we are/were ever in the middle and experiencing the grand phenomenon known as metamorphic change…you know, the almost invisible transformation of a caterpillar into butterfly stuff. And then of course, there’s the end. Sometimes the end comes and we get exactly what we want. Sometimes we don’t get closure from a broken relationship or an addiction and we bury the pain in our bodies where the pain never truly heals until we dig it back up. Any way you look at it, this formula gives us a false perception. When we view our lives in terms of beginning-middle-end, instead of being present and LIVING life, we end up worrying about the past and the future, the beginnings and ends, wondering where we are in the continuum, and windup just going through the motions.
Going into the New Year, I found myself reflecting over 2013. I could pinpoint several major transformational growths: having the courage to speak my truth and share my feelings with the girl I (still) have feelings for; daring to step out of the familiar and safe relationship I was in; maintaining the fierce determination that I most certainly would do whatever it takes to be teaching more class and living a life I love. Courageous conversations. Fierce resolve. Bold unknown territory. I could look back at 2013 and those milestones with pride as important steps in my journey. But, as I went into the New Year, I wondered where I was. I wondered if one piece of my life was truly ending. If I wanted that piece to end. If I was able to let go without closure. I wondered if a new one was beginning. If it was the right beginning. And in all this wondering, I found myself consumed with dis-ease. Certainly no way to be starting the New Year…or was it?
Life is most full of ease when we are not waiting for it to begin. Or end. Life is most full of ease when we are living in each moment. And sometimes it takes dis-ease to realize we are out of alignment with the flow. That each moment IS our new beginning, always offering us a choice, a promise. All we need to do is say YES.
You don’t need closure in order to start over. You don’t. I don’t either. Even as I still struggle with letting go of the first girl I ever outwardly expressed feelings for, even as I struggle to redefine the emotional bond with a person I’ve known for 12 years, even as I struggle to break old limiting beliefs that tell me I’m not good enough to teach or be happy, I know in my heart, I don’t need closure to start again. Now is OUR chance to be the powerful force for the positive change we wish to see in our lives. And that change is a continual transformation that might not be recognizable at first. But it’s still you. It’s still me. And when we realize this, we become present to the new beginnings of each moment and to what life has to OFFER us. We just need to make the decision to live and decide what IT is we are living for. We need to make a commitment, a promise, to ourselves each day and follow through with it simply because we said we would (Want to make a promise? Click HERE to get your “…Because I Said I Would” card and start living IT today).
Being a powerful for positive change starts by deciding something needs to change and then using each moment and every day as a new beginning for that to occur. It won’t be easy. It won’t be handed to you or show up on your doorstep. It takes determination, perseverance and maybe even scraping your knees a couple times. But you’ll be stronger and more resilient because of it. Just know that I understand how hard it is and know that I’m there too…
Perhaps, just maybe, your closure and mine is the CHOICE and privilege to begin-right now-to make a promise and to honor that promise over and over again so that there is no…