This month our focus is on the topic of Growth. Every week I am going to come on here and talk about various topics surrounding Growth. I want to start off the month by talking about how hard growth actually is. Growth is messy but we can embrace the messy!
Growth is amazing, we all want it, and we all strive for it. The internet is full of memes and inspirational quotes about how to get it. But what’s not on there, what doesn’t get talked about is how hard it is. How messy growth is, how there’s a major struggle in it, and it’s not as seamless as we think it is going to be.
We don’t often talk or share vulnerably or openly about how difficult, painful, and messy growth actually is. It is painful at times, it can be heartbreaking and lonely. It can make you feel like you want to give up and think why do I want to get to this point that I want to get to, because it is so difficult.
All growth is really difficult, and in some ways, it was always meant to be difficult. If it was super easy we would all want to do it. The whole point is the reward, of reaching this space of where you want to be. Starting on one end and making it to the other end, the reward is knowing that not everyone does it. Knowing that there is a challenge that comes with it. If it was easy enough, everyone would do it, and then that reward wouldn’t be so special. It’s only special because we know it’s really really difficult to get there.
There isn’t a direct path, and a lot of discomfort happens. A metaphor I use for growth is:
Imagine yourself on one side holding a wall and you want to get to the other side of this wall. The room is really dark and you reach for this other wall as much as you can while holding up this other wall. It’s a metaphor for holding onto one version of who you are and reaching for the other version of who you want to be. We would love the ability to have the stability of what we would get from holding both walls at the same time. Because it would give us a sense of safety, security, and predictability. In order to get to the other wall, you have to let go of the one you’re holding onto.
And in-between growth and change is the most uncomfortable place to be. It is not a direct line to that wall, you’re going to stumble, and you might not even end up at the wall you wanted. But when you finally put your hand on the wall that you’re looking for there is a reward. That sense of amazement, wonderment, and joy that you made it to this space. That payoff is about the painfulness and discomfort that came with that growth.
We do not speak of growth from this toxic positivity, we talk about growth from this place of knowing the pain that comes with it, the hurt, the messiness, the grief that sometimes comes with it. Grief because we are letting go of something in order to grab onto something new. And that’s okay, it’s okay to have all these uncomfortable feelings when going through growth.
Growth is painful and messy but it’s always really beautiful. We are working towards the end product that we want. And what’s the alternative? It would be not to grow. Anything that doesn’t involve growing, dies. We would stay stuck which is a sentence of limited life and what we want is an abundant life – abundant comes with mess and pain.
Growth is messy but we can embrace the messy.