We’re in the midst of a global transformation, and we can’t expect it to be easy or comfortable.
It’s madness. It’s chaos.
And it’s bringing pressure to bear on everything that’s broken.
We can’t control everything happening in the world. That’s part of the overwhelm—watching things break down around us and being unable to do much about it.
So, what part of this mega transformation do we have control over?
We can answer that question by asking another.
What is this global transformation about? What are we being transformed into?
There’s only one answer.
I don’t mean love abstractly or romantically. I mean it in a way that speaks to the survival of our species.
Love binds us together. It’s what makes us care about one another. And caring means survival. It helps us make life-sustaining choices for ourselves and the planet. But love and caring have fallen victim to greed and fear and caused nothing but pain, suffering, waste, and destruction.
So, what can we do? What part can we play?
We can start by looking at where the transformational pressure is hitting in our own lives. For example, how is love broken in me?
From there, we can look at how we protect ourselves from opening our hearts. What walls have we constructed to protect ourselves from disappointment and rejection?
The author of Getting the Love You Want, Harville Hendrix, developed a list of questions to help us identify what we’re still trying to work out around love from our childhoods.
One question is:
>> What did you want most from your parents that you didn’t get when you were a child?
Things like time, attention, acceptance, encouragement, affection, understanding, and respect.
That was followed by:
>> How did you cope? How did you protect your heart?
What I wanted, for example, was more affection—a show of love. I coped with that lack by retreating to my room. And that’s been a pattern for me into adulthood. I have been a self-proclaimed hermit at times.
But the transformational pressure has found me. I’ve been stuck at home, alone, for over a year because of the pandemic. The opportunity to meet a friend outside for coffee has also been stripped away due to smoke from surrounding fires for the past two months.
It has become painfully clear that sheltering away may be safe but only mildly fulfilling. So at this point, I’m not only willing but eager to venture out and risk rejection and disappointment to connect and be with other people.
Pressure is coming to bear on how we wall off our hearts. It’s urging us to trust. To open. To connect. To love. To care because closed-hearted people will not transform the world. Instead, our civilization can change by openhearted people.
So, how can we all do our part?
Start with these three questions:
>> As a child, what show of love and caring were you missing from your parents or caregivers?
>> What was your coping mechanism?
>> How is life intensifying that mechanism right now to get you to release it?
Unfortunately, there is no map for getting from where we are to where life is encouraging us to go. But what I know about transformation is that it begins with a willingness to let go and allow change. So, let’s start there. And we’ll see where it take us, together.