Like a Butterfly

Like a Butterfly

“With aging, you earn the right to be loyal to yourself.” ~Frances McDormand

As we continue to cope with the on-going challenges of the pandemic, it seems to me that the world is cocooning, and a chrysalis is forming, but we don’t know what will emerge, butterfly or moth.

The pandemic has forced many changes on the outside for millions of people: working from home, masks, and the myriad other major alterations to the landscape of our day-to-day lives.

It has also propelled changes on the inside as well. I suspect this is true for many folks. It certainly is for my coaching clients.

An examination of personal priorities, of principles and values, of what’s important, what truly matters—and what doesn’t—has pushed people to act on their resulting clarity; three of my closest friends moved from Toronto in the spring. Many others have changed careers.

Questions some people may have pushed to the periphery of their minds began pushing back.

Questions like, why am I working so hard in a field I don’t enjoy, or how much money is enough, or do I really need such a big house or expensive car or the newest electronic gadget when it hits the market?

Questions like, what am I to learn from this challenging global event, or how can I better contribute to the well-being of the world?

Or simply, how will I survive this?

You know, easy, light-hearted questions like that.

~          ~          ~          ~          ~          ~

I spent the summers of both 2020 and 2021 at the family cottage on an island in the St. Lawrence River.

That’s 10 months, away from Toronto and the busyness of city life. On an island. Alone. Befriending birds and chipmunks.

Drawing and painting and writing—a lot.

And thinking and sorting and releasing—even more.

Valuable insights are revealed in the absence of distractions, demands and deadlines.

And answers found in stillness often take root quickly, compelling action.

In my case, as you read this, I will have begun my great walk-about. (Well, a great drive-about; my knees ain’t what they used to be.)

I am taking this winter to explore—places, people, and possibilities—and expand on my passion for words—their power and beauty—through various mediums.

The image above is a doodle I did one night. Far from perfect, it was fun and it’s pretty, and I have decided that painting pretty word-pictures is a fine endeavour—one I realize I’ve pursued all my life, albeit unaware.

As the calendar creeps toward 2022, I feel a bit like I imagine a caterpillar might feel (if they feel at all) as they morph into something else, and then begin to burst through their cocoon, their colours and wingspan, though already fully formed, not yet visible.

And so, I am flying into a future already formed, somehow, though unaware of my wingspan or flight path. (I’ll keep you apprised.)

Trusting in the transition despite the uncertainty.

Like a butterfly.

I hope.

(Because moths I can live without.)

“The butterfly said to the sun, ‘They can’t stop talking about my transformation. I can only do it once in my lifetime. If only they knew they can do it at any time and in countless ways.’” ~Dodinsky



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About
Cynthia Barlow

Founder Cynthia Barlow

Facilitator, Author, Coach

Helping businesses build their people

When your people have the skills to communicate more effectively, they can connect more easily and collaborate more productively. Not only on the job, but also in life.

Communication, Connection, and Collaboration—the three “C’s”—are the cornerstones of all successful businesses. They are the result of Emotional Intelligence in action.

More details can be found in my recent best seller with co-author Jennifer Eggers:
Resilience: It’s Not About Bouncing Back

The power of resilience within organizations can transform an average company into a powerhouse. Yet, even in times of rapid disruptive change, there is no manual for building resilient organizations. This book is that manual.

“If you  want to build more resilience intentionally—personally and professionally—read this book.
~
Fran Karamousis, Chief  of Research, Gartner

 

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