Let Go of the Trapeze and Fly

Continental_Circus_Double_Trapeze_act

This week, as I pressed the PUBLISH button on my online course content and hit SEND on the emails to over a hundred students, I felt a familiar squeeze of anxiety:

Well, here we go. I hope all the dates are right. I hope I didn’t forget something. I hope the links work. I hope I didn’t make a spelling error on the freaking welcome email because, as a writing teacher, that would be truly terrible.

The squeeze tightened: shoulders creeping toward ears, breath stuck in my heart, terrific craving for Doritos. So I paused. I took a moment to manage my mind.

It’s ok, Georgi. It’s all ok. You’re flying through the air right now, but you’re going to catch the bar. 

You see last week, one of my executive students taught me an extraordinary metaphor: Transitions are like flying on the trapeze.

You are swinging along through life, feeling good.

Then, an opportunity shows up. It becomes your new target.

You gain momentum, you fly higher, you point yourself toward that target and then…

You let go.

You go flying through the air.

The excitement and the terror.

The freedom and the fear.

The beauty and the absolute vulnerability of your body hurtling through space.

Am I going to land?

Am I going to miss?

Will I fall to the net? If so, what would I make that mean?

circus-835705__180Here’s the thing: There is no opting out of this circus. We’re on the trapeze. Sometimes we are swinging and carefree. Sometimes we don’t want to swing in the same place anymore. Sometimes we see an opportunity and long for it. Sometimes we see an opportunity and it looks so far away. Sometimes we just want to hang there, but it is so incredibly painful. Sometimes we drop to the net and begin again.

Beautiful reader: You are so brave and strong up there on the trapeze. Do you need to make a transition? Is it time to move on? If so, start believing that you will hit that gorgeous new target. Gain momentum. Tell yourself you’ve got this. And then…

Let go and fly.

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