When you were a child, it was natural to outgrow clothes and shoes. It meant that you were growing. Kids don’t just outgrow clothes. You outgrew books, toys, and games as you learned new skills. You graduated from blocks and blankies.
Somewhere in adulthood we stop growing. I still have clothes I wore in college, and they still fit. Some of them are timeless and I still wear them.
But there are some things, that even if they still fit physically, no longer fit energetically. We outgrow things in different ways.
If we continue with our emotional and spiritual growth we will outgrow mentors, relationships, ways of being, habits, careers, homes, and even goals.
Most people change residences at least once every seven years, on average. Long gone are the days where someone works in one job or for one company for their entire career. These days we are likely to have several careers, not just jobs.
At every transition point, we are forced to leave behind that which is outgrown.
If this makes you feel uncomfortable, you’re not alone. Change often feels like a kind of death. In a way, it is. One part of us must die to give birth to the next iteration, or evolution of who we are becoming.
The caterpillar dies to birth the butterfly.
This is nature. Humans aren’t exempt.
Our culture, for the most part, doesn’t like to talk about death. Death brings up our fears of the unknown. It’s the great mystery.
It’s especially hard when we must let go of a part of ourselves.
Again, I like to look to nature for guidance.
Right now in the Northeast United States, the Autumn show is gearing up. Leaves are turning colors and the trees are shedding with more force.
Although its branches lay bare, the tree remains standing, rooted in the ground. It retains its essence.
And so do we. When we shed what we’ve outgrown, we create space for new life to emerge, for new leaves to sprout. We don’t necessarily know when this will happen, but nature never fails us.
There’s always a new cycle: a new moon, a new dawn, a new season. Daylight comes. Spring comes.
In the meantime, we can root in our essence and discover who we are without the leaves.
shed what you’ve outgrown
notice what remains within
this is your essence