’Tis the Season of Outgrowing.

Image from thoughtnova.com

Have you ever outgrown a relationship, job, place, or lifestyle? Have you struggled to navigate this discomfort or the urge to move on? Let us talk about it.

There is a season for everything: seasons of joy and despair: seasons of new blooms and chapter endings. Most significantly, within all seasons lie an intended purpose, leading to our growth, shaping, pruning, teaching, and healing.

We often only understand a season’s purpose long after we have left it. Only through reflection and comparison of our present season may we properly understand yesterday’s objective. Although, don’t we gain more when we know the purpose of today and not just yesterday, something we no longer have any control over? If we slow down and view life through more meaningful and mindful lenses, we become more receptive to the messages our current season is trying to communicate.

Earlier this school year, I recognized that something I once loved brought me joy no longer. Confusion followed this recognition, and for a while, I could not understand why I felt this way. How did something I enjoyed so much last year fail to contribute positively to my life now? Especially when nothing about my situation had undergone significant changes that made me lose my balance.

The answer is that there was a change: not in my workload, relationships, or priorities, but in me. It took some time for me to accept that I now eagerly searched for a sense of fulfillment at a place where I previously found it ever so effortlessly — a bitter pill to swallow.

After this acceptance, I began thinking about what to do next- do I remain or leave? I sat with this reality for a few months, leaving ample opportunity for my mind and heart to miraculously change or reunite with a spark, ultimately refueling my love for the circumstance. Although, no matter how much I sat and waited around to reunite with a sense of fulfillment, contentment, or joy, it did not return; this is when I understood my time at a place had officially served its purpose and ran its course– when something I once deemed as fruitful turned fruitless.

Back to the point about seasons– this one’s purpose was to illuminate my outgrowing. Outgrowing occurs when we evolve emotionally and desire a change for something that will take us to the next level. We should not feel bad about our discomfort in relationships, jobs, lifestyles, or places, and we should rejoice in knowing we are not who we were yesterday. Ultimately, outgrowing signals to us that we are in deep need of a new thing; go and discover what that new thing is. Chances are, you will come to grips with something far better than whatever you decide to leave behind.

You may be experiencing a new desire, attitude, or perspective regarding a person, place, lifestyle, or situation. The best advice I can give you is to listen and respect what you feel; do not try to suppress or ignore what discontent is attempting to teach. Staying somewhere we have outgrown is like staying where we do not belong. Why remain? If you have no choice but to remain, implement changes catering to your next level.

Our season’s purposes may be in misalignment. For instance, you may not feel the same dissatisfaction or have the desire to move on. Perhaps this season aims to heal your heart, gain wisdom, or reveal what you love. Whatever the purpose, it is my hope you pay attention and do something about it. For everything, there is a season and reason. Are you paying attention to what the present is here to do?

To all my out-growers out there, Paulo Coehlo says, “If you’re brave enough to say goodbye, life will reward you with a new hello.”

Don’t fight against the tide; let it graciously guide you to the next best thing.

This blog post was provided to you by Marquette University’s Center for Student Wellness and Health Promotion. Our writer for this week was Rosie Kyriakopoulos.

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Marquette University Student Wellness Center

We are committed to advancing the overall health and wellbeing of the students at Marquette University through comprehensive wellness services and programming.