“You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star.” Frederick Nietzsche
This journal spread is all about the change curve. This year has seen a big change for me. I am no longer taking paying clients as a pro photographer, and although it was a very positive and proactive decision it does leave me with a space full of choices to make and a lot of questions what it is I’m here for. Which is absolutely what I wanted, and I’m privileged to be here, and I’m certainly on the path to answering that question, but I’m not saying it’s always comfortable! Previously, when I’ve made big life changes (I left a local government job to be a mum… I stopped working as a garden designer to home educate my son…) it’s been clear what my next move was. It wasn’t always easy to take the Next Step, but I usually knew where the step was and could tentatively and excitedly point my foot towards it. And then, as now, it’s headlong on the roller coaster of Change… up, down, round and back again…ooooh, this is….fun?! It’s a relief to know that we all, in many different situations, when we’ve committed to change, experience highs and lows of confidence and resolve, and, when our heads spin in a whirl of chaos, that it probably won’t end in disaster.
My little graph here is an adaptation of a well know management tool (not that many management experts would recognise it as such, I imagine!). Stepping out of our comfort zones, and into the bright light of passion and excitement and optimism about our new venture can be so energising that it can very quickly precipitate us into a mire of resistance. And then we somehow keep going, because we know in our hearts that we are on the right track and the pain of NOT DOING is inevitable going to be worse… and then we meet our old friend Chaos. It’s easy to get stuck here, in the maelstrom of decisions and choices and options. And confusion that the unquestioning excitement that fuelled us to this stage has dissipated into exhaustion. But like even the most Gordian of knots the chaos eventually unravels, if we just keep going. Chaos is a fertile ground. This is where the magic happens, if we allow it. We summon strength, we experience a breakthrough moment, a transforming idea, we sit with it, we mull and meditate, and before we realise it we are heading confidently towards a new status quo, and then we do our work.
A craving for order and control comes from Ego. When we fear chaos, we are paralysed. When we embrace the chaos, we fly.