Sunday, September 27, 2015

Neutral Zone

Soon after I moved to Orlando, a New York friend sent me Transitions, Making Sense of Life's Changes, by William Bridges. Since I think I know it all, I don't normally read "self-help" books. In deference to my good friend, I skimmed through it. I discovered that Bridges drew on the writings of Mircea Eliade and Carlos Castaneda, two writers I had connected with decades ago and almost forgotten. I then read the book slowly, stopping to think how I had handled the many changes in my life. The lesson I learned was that I almost always skipped the Neutral Zone.

Bridges talked about three stages of change: Endings (Letting Go), Neutral Zone, and New Beginnings. When my life went into a tailspin, I had almost always pulled my Wonder Woman routine and immediately jumped into something new (career, city, whatever). 

That wasn't possible in Orlando. There was nothing to jump into. So I spent time in the Neutral Zone until, magically, new beginnings appeared.

Ninja Turtles

Once Wonder Woman was my name.
I met impossible deadlines.
Turned around companies.
Launched million-dollar deals.

One superhero fades away.
New ones come out to play.
Life is a series of transitions.

I have a different role in the village.

Now, I work for purposes larger than myself.
I connect with a new family generation,
delighting in pottery painting, Play- Doh and
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

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