Transformation as a Rite of Passage

Monday, June 24, 2019

The deeper transformational moments in our lives often arrive with a fair amount of challenge and emotionally turbulent circumstances. Even if the changes we are embarking on are positive, all that we must shed and shift about our current life leads us through a grief process. We must face ourselves and make choices that inevitably leave behind who we were to make space for our next evolution of self. There is much wisdom to carry with us about what we learned in each phase of our journey, and that learning comes with the process of releasing attachments to the life we had become accustomed to. 

Transformation is a complex creature. There is no simple path from one self to the next; instead we are required to take small steps that build upon each other. We encounter opportunities that stretch our comfort zone and invite us choose something new. We will inevitably be taken through the spectrum of emotions, rising into the highs of all the yesses and then dropping into the doubts of all the no’s. These might feel like bipolar moments, but in truth, they are human moments of exploration. Learning how to be with yourself through transformation. 

Our current culture lacks Rites of Passage. There aren’t many clear opportunities for an individual to move through an incredibly challenging ritual of ego deconstruction with the intention of becoming a more mature version of themselves. We lack support systems that allow for this to happen, and we lack traditions that encourage us to do this at regular intervals in our lives. We have diminished the value of elders sharing wisdom as we embark on journeys of maturity. These conditions have stunted our growth in many ways. Rather than follow in the footsteps of our tribal traditions, we have had to independently respond as intense challenges smack us in the face. 

Knowing that the various opportunities for transformation can become our signal for a maturing self, we can cultivate a process that allows us to utilize these big shifts to the fullest. We can create support systems through therapy and trusted loved ones that will reflect and encourage us through the process. We can know the ways in which we need to tend to our bodies during challenging times so that we have the energy to show up and continue on the journey. We can seek guidance from others in the community that have walked these fires before. We can take the time to embrace these challenges as a gift, and connect with ourselves in an effort to trust our inner knowing. 

Think back on your life over the past 10-20 years. What has been a transformational Rite of Passage in your life? What big moments matured you into a new version of yourself? What challenging moments turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to you? How do you hope to be supported in the next big shift? What do you need during challenging times to help you feel grounded and nourished? 

If you are ready to transform, Sage & Sunshine Therapy is here to help guide you through your growth. We can offer support, wisdom, and encouragement as you embark on your next rite of passage. Schedule your first session today. 

Written by: Rhiannon DeStefano for Sage and Sunshine Therapy