Spring two-step (From the Seasons Newsletter)


Here we go again. Spring takes dainty steps forward, holding out sweet-scented posies, before lurching back again into grey, rain-lashed days.

The glory of the magnolia is swiftly shaken to a pile of petals on the ground. An avenue of daffodils is rain battered. The picnic is cancelled, the walk postponed. A promising new project or relationship hits an obstacle and you are sent reeling.

The spring two-step is underway: two steps forward, one step back. It leads you on and dashes you back. It’s not the way you want growth to be.

But the truth is, growth and setbacks go hand in hand. By choosing to grow you are inevitably going to be tested.
Forget about those linear upward graph lines. They are as unrealistic as surveyors’ grids imposed on a hilly landscape.

Every season teaches a new way of being.

The teaching of spring is about holding faith. Resilience. Stumbling back and stepping forth again. Joining the dance of life, rather than the lurch of resentment and complaint.

What can you hold on to when the spring two-step threatens to knock you off balance? Here are some ideas:

  • * Know that this is part of newness. The initiation stage of growth can feel like the uncertainty of adolescence. It’s a bit like falling in love and peeling daisy petals of uncertainty: loves me/loves me not. Steadier seasons do lie ahead.
  • * In a journal or notebook, jot down any signs of progress. Focus on the two steps forward, rather than the one step back. Watch nature for signs of resilience: blossom that replaces the shredded petals, new shoots that caress the earth.
  • * Contemplate the value of the one step back. Getting sick in the midst of a fast-track project may give valuable reflection time.  An obstacle may mean you find another way to do things.
  • * Relax into the dance. The spring two-step is after all the dance of life.

Even as you are shaken up and turned around, hold faith with your dreams, revise the details if necessary, grab a dancing partner for support, and stay present.

You know, everybody has setbacks in their life, and everybody falls short of whatever goals they might set for themselves. That’s part of living and coming to terms with who you are as a person.’ —Hilary Clinton

To my readers: This is the first post that I’ve imported into my new blog page from The Seasons Newsletter. From time to time I will share selected newsletters with you on this blog, and I welcome your comments.

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