October is a month of change. Here in North America, the leaves are beginning to change color, and the air is getting cooler and crisper. The farm fields are changing as the final seasonal crops are harvested.
The great paradox of fall is that it is a time for gathering in and a time for releasing, letting go. This is a month to practice embracing change in your life, letting go of things, people, beliefs that no longer serve your highest self.
The seasons teach us about constant evolving, this great mystery of life. We can depend upon it. The natural order is a state of impermanence. In many ways, it takes more energy to keep things from changing.
Yet fear of the unknown can cause us to grasp onto the thing that is trying to be released.
I could write a book about the many events, relationships, and wishful thoughts that I have been attached to, all the while knowing they were either not good for me or their time had come. I wish I could say that I have mastered the graceful exit, but I am getting better about recognizing when things need to end.
Price Pritchett, a thought leader on corporate culture and breakthrough performance, talks about the four C’s of managing change:
Cope with change. Give up helplessness and victim mentality, like someone is doing something to you. Take on a perspective that something is ending and practice the graceful exit. It is difficult to change when you’re stuck in a position.
Comply with change. Adjust your thinking to incorporate the change. Examine your thought processes. Are they working for you or against you? Are you resisting a change that is beyond your control?
Capitalize on change. See the opportunities available. Look for the advantages. Make a list of the benefits of the changes you want to make. We often miss the new opportunities that endings provide because of fear of not being able to see the next door.
Create change. Instead of waiting for something to blow up, read the proverbial handwriting on the wall and go after what you want instead. Take a class, buy a book, attend a seminar, or join a group. Create white space. Imagine the possibilities. Get involved in whatever it is you want to change.
Consider something that is ending.
What are you happy to be done with?
What do you grieve about this ending?
What have you learned from this experience?