Embrace bewilderment

“Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment.” Rumi

Funnily, I have found, when I acknowledge that I am bewildered and not sure of the next step (thank you for the prompt, dear Lisa S.), answers come walking up the driveway. Or calling on the phone. Or showing up somehow. Just like that. Like the universe was just waiting for me to ask. To let go of the death grip of the reins.

For example…

I’m trying to learn (relearn? unlearn?) how to work in the world with more lightness and less “oh my god it’s all on me to fix all the things and save all the things”…(decondition from some kind of learned stoicism?) — and every time I start to loosen the reins and allow that “well, gosh, I just don’t know the best way to move forward on this”, someone calls or emails out of the blue who is pretty much the perfect person to say “I can for sure find some kids who are keen to do instagram takeovers.”

That literally happened to me last year and it resulted in the Active Hope Climate Squad group, which embarked on a 7 week adventure in the Spiral of the Work that Reconnects, grief and empowerment work conceived by Joanna Macy, to help us address the climate emergency with some grace and sanity and hopefulness… It’s one year since we went through that process. This is a poster I made incorporating some of the feedback people shared about the experience a year on.

I’d done an online course with a virtual group from around the world, in the fall of 2021, and it was amazing and so resourcing and I knew that I really wanted to bring it here, to the people I share a postcode with, but couldn’t muster the jam to do it, and I found leaving my house incredibly intimidating, and then suddenly, in the spring, I was having conversations with people and it all just fell into place thanks to those conversations and those people. It was like magic… All of which to say, when I was able to let the befuddlement of not knowing what to do be a light fun place to hang out, (like you’re waiting to see who’s going to come strolling up the laneway with a big smile and a bouquet of flowers), happy synergies have the space to happen.

So if you have a moment or several where you think, I’m not really sure what the next step is, or how to bring this idea to reality, say that, out loud, or in a journal. “I have a big ‘I don’t know’ around this and would like a clue or some input.” You might be surprised what shows up. We live in a culture obsessed with hot takes and answers. But there is something deeply generative about holding a question for long enough for it to grow into something, or embracing a little bewilderment.

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