JUST A THOUGHT: We Fear Change Because of the In-Between Place

Image Credit: Filip Kominik on Unsplash

The BIG THOUGHT in this LITTLE POST:

We fear change because we’re afraid of the chasm between what we have and what we want.

It's rare that changing our circumstances is a 'tidy' experience; that we'll go directly from one thing into another.

It could happen with a job; you get a new job so you leave your old one.

It could also happen with a relationship; it's possible to start a new relationship while still in a former relationship (although I suspect this is messy and therefore, not to be recommended).

But generally that isn't how life works.

Generally, there's a void, a chasm, a no-man's land where we've let go of the old thing but the new thing hasn't come to fill the space yet.

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And that's what we're afraid of, and why we're often reluctant to let go of what we have - even if we're not happy with it - because living in that empty space of uncertainty is UNCOMFORTABLE.

Let's take a moment to acknowledge that discomfort. I don't want to minimize it by any means, because uncertainty isn't fun and isn't for the faint of heart.

And the very real problem is that when we let go of one thing, there is NO GUARANTEE that something will come to fill it.

Alright, when it comes to work, if you've lost a job and are at all employable in any way, chances are you will find some form of gainful employment. But no one can promise you what it will be or when it might come along.

And the same goes for relationships; if you're a fairly decent human being, then at some point you're likely to meet someone who'll want to engage in a relationship with you. But, again no one can promise you who this person will be or when they might come along.

This is uncomfortable; the not knowing.

I understand because I've lived in no-man's land for most of my life; I'm in my early 40's and I've changed jobs and career paths so many times, and been in and out of enough relationships (and in and out of one engagement) that I'm still recovering from the whiplash.

So I got you; I know that risking the loss of what you have to gamble for something better is scary AF; especially because we humans are more motivated by the fear of loss than the potential of gain.

But...but...

You gotta let got of the good to get to the better.

The Universe abhors a vacuum, and it will fill the void with something, at some point.

But there often has to be an empty space first.

The other reason that we sometimes fear letting go of what we have is because of the sunk-cost fallacy; "I've invested too much time/money/energy into my career/relationship only to let it all go now."

But then here's the question I would invite you to ask yourself: "Is the fact that I've invested considerable resources into making this mistake a reason to keep making the mistake?

I use the word "mistake" while understanding that nothing is generally as clear cut as this because "mistake" implies that the thing you're considering is very black or white. As the yin/yang symbol teaches us, there's no such thing as pure black or pure white, all good or all bad.

Image Credit: Shutterstock

But on a soul-level, or a gut-level, when you can feel and know that something just isn't right for you, that you know there IS SOMETHING BETTER OUT THERE, even if you don't know what it is yet, will you be brave enough to take the chance?

In life we get what we settle for, and it's fear of the chasm that causes us to settle.

But don't settle.

Life is too short for any of us to accept less than what we know we want and deserve.

Be brave my fellow travellers and take a chance at something better.
Image Credit: Dr. Seuss Art

You will come to a place where the streets are not marked.
Some windows are lighted. But mostly they're darked.
A place you could sprain both your elbow and chin!
Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in?
How much can you lose? How much can you win?


Comments

  1. I find that most of us are risk averse and yes, we abhor discomfort for any length of time.Therefore, us humans often delay action into a new opportunity or breaking from the familiar because the unknown requires venturing past fear and the possibility of having to face disappointment.

    But nothing ventured, nothing will be gained. And, from recent experience, there are great things out there waiting for us.

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