Breakdowns open door to a deeper power.
Definition of a breakdown; A cessation of proper mechanical functions; an abrupt disastrous failure; a sudden sharp decline in mental, emotional or physical health; the separation of a whole into its parts of study, the condition of being decayed.
I was compelled this morning, while thinking about breakdowns, to look up the definition of ‘breakdown’. It dawned on me that change cannot happen without breakdowns. In fact, breakdowns are the precursor to breakthroughs. In other words, things have to dissolve in order to be reborn. For example, many plants, like trees, enter a dormant state in the Fall/Winter, and then come back in the Spring in a new form. An oak tree drops acorns on the ground which crack open and eventually sprout. The sprout grows into a new oak tree that will then bear more acorns. In order for the sprout to come out, the shell has to crack open and its content has to dissolve/rot and mix with the earth’s DNA to create what will become an oak tree. Nature gives us a powerful lesson in transformation. Nothing is ever lost.Everything decomposes, transforms, and gets reborn. The same happens in life!
Why is it that we as human beings resist change so much? Why is it that, at times, our resistance to change make us dig our heels in the ground so deep that despite the ‘writings on the wall’, it takes an earth shattering event to make us let go and surrender?
All my breakdowns have been physical; Carpal Tunnel syndrome, Lyme disease, Epstein Barr, Breast Cancer. Every single one of those breakdowns made me shift a career that I no longer wanted. It was only with breast cancer that I chose to look deeper into my life’s patterns. I chose to dissolve a 24 year marriage, to no fault of mine or my husband’s. We simply were not able to work out our differences. There were writings on the walls that I chose to ignore as the years passed. I felt ashamed to reveal the truth about certain feelings and ignored important needs that I had.
Why? Fear! Fear of making a mistake, going out on my own, hurting someone that I deeply care about, the unknown…and so on. My wounded ego made me believe that my fears were real and, because of that, I could not make the changes needed to respond to my heart and soul’s calling to grow.
Continuing with the acorn metaphor, the wounded ego is like the shell and the spirit is the life force that pushes through the shell. It wants our soul to expand and soar. Our ego mind can be very convincing, fueled by deeply rooted beliefs that seem to hold a lot of weight, especially if they have been in operation since childhood.
Breakdowns are a push of the soul to expand beyond a space that has become too small to live in. Like snakes who shed their outer skin layer because they have outgrown it, our soul pushes for us to let go of old emotions and belief patterns that no longer serve us.
We differentiate ourselves from the animal kingdom in one way: we human beings have free will. We can choose to resist change and growth. That resistance has a price. It creates tension, which, when maintained over time, causes wear and tear on all levels of our being: physically, emotionally, mentally and even spiritually. It robs us of our basic life force and blocks the pathway for our spirit to guide us, through our intuition, to a deeper knowing.
Sometimes, as happened to me, a life threatening illness will make us stop and go deeper. That is where transformation happens. Transformation literally means moving through forms. We let go of the old form to allow for a more authentic form to emerge. That is the function of breakdowns, to dissolve form.
Let’s face it, it takes energy to hold on to things. It takes energy to resist, yet resistance also has a purpose.It can be the precursor to strength. Butterflies don’t emerge from their cocoon without effort. They push through the envelope that surrounds them and that pushing through resistance makes their wings develop. If someone with good intentions attempts to break the cocoon open, the wings will remain atrophied and the butterfly will never be able to fly.
In nature and in life, everything comes in its own time. We live in a society that wants immediate transformation. We want to move to the breakthroughs without efforts. We want to skip the breakdown process and come out triumphantly flying. Skipping steps may land us with weaker wings, leaving us unable to soar to the heights we are meant to fly.
Is your soul calling you to look deeper? Have you had this gnawing feeling that things don’t feel ‘right’ anymore, yet are afraid of admitting it to yourself? Are you experiencing physical symptoms such as burnout, chronic aches and pain, stress and anxiety? Are you bored, restless, feeling stuck and uninspired?
It takes courage to look deeper.It is uncomfortable to ask questions that challenge the status quo, yet you take the chance of finding an unprecedented source of strength unknown to you. You will take the chance to find an unshakable source of power and wisdom inside yourself in your own heart! As a result, you will not fear change any longer because you will know that, despite the fact that everything changes, your heart and soul are connected to an infinite source of wisdom and knowledge. Only when you choose to let go and surrender do you then realize that there is nothing to fear!
Are you willing to take that ride with me?