I remember being around 10 years old and my legs were aching like nothing I had ever experienced before. As I cried from the pain my parents explained to me that I was enduring something called growing pains. It was excruciating. Thankfully, the pains subsided pretty quickly… and as you can tell by my height, so did my growing.
Now, at 39 years old, I’m experiencing growing pains of a whole new kind. Lately I have found myself awake most nights wondering and worrying about my life. The ironic thing is that nothing bad is happening. In fact, life is pretty good. But it feels like a lot of things are changing and I’m needing to make big decisions about important issues. But I don’t feel ready! Personally, professionally, spiritually and physically I am being stretched and prodded to grow. When you have physical growing pains you take some Advil and take it easy. But growing pains of the metaphorical kind are a bit harder to manage. So what can we do?
1. Identify your emotions. Are you scared, worried, excited, uncertain…?
2. Allow yourself to embrace and experience these emotions. The capacity to experience feeling is synonymous with the capacity to give and receive happiness. To the degree you shy away from any kind of emotional experience, to that extent you also close the door to the experience of happiness.
3. Recognize that this is a season of growth and that good will come from it if we allow it. No season ever lasts forever whether we want it to or not.
It’s important that we never stop growing. So it is important that we recognize that with the growth may come a certain degree of pain. And that’s ok.