Saturday, November 28, 2015

Can shocks be a good thing?

I have sustained my share of worldly shocks. —Lord Byron

I have too. I'm sure you have as well. But can shocks be a good thing?

A friend of mine once said that she needed some "bee stings" to get moving out of the complacency her life had become. Isn't that the truth? If we are overly settled in our lives, entrenched in the ruts we've been living in for a long time, well, then, chances are reasoning (no matter how persuasive) or will power or love or whatever is not going to be able to get us moving. But bee stings will.

No one handles bee stings well. They're like, "Ho, I'm out of here!" and they're running off. There's not a lot of deliberation. You're not asking a lot of questions. ('Gee, maybe I should move away from this wasp stinging me?') You're just moving. Fast.

Nobody likes to get bee stings (actual or figurative), but I think we can all agree that they do get us moving.

Health is a good example. Sometimes it takes the shock of a bad report on a test to get us taking care of our health.

I think of shocks (figurative shocks, now) as breaking up the barrier in our mind or psyche that is keeping us stuck. And nothing else will do. Even in the physical world, think of a big slab of stone blocking something. Will chipping away at it  break it open? No. It may whittle away at the edges but it will not break it open. Only an out and out smash will do the job.

So, if you want quick change in your life don't hide from shocks.

Should we pursue shocks then?

Some people do. Lord Byron did. He lived a tumultuous life of wild risk taking (and accordingly received his share of worldly shocks).

I think, though, if you want to change badly enough you don't need to find the shocks—the shocks will find you. But you do have to be open to the shocks. And not curse whatever has brought them into your life. It might even be said that it would be best to welcome them.

And then hang on for dear life while the shocks do their job—and deliver the change you were looking for.

Yes, shocks can be a good thing. A very good thing.

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