On Friday mornings I get to take a ballet class for adults. It's so good. Today a young teenage girl visited the class. She was so sweet and has such beautiful lines. Our teacher spent a lot of time working with her pressing her to work next level technique. This is totally the point (pun!) of a ballet class, but it is a hard learning curve for every single dancer to learn how to take correction without having their feelings hurt. This sweet girl was clearly upset. Oh man. My heart went out to her. I been there, sister, I been there.
13 years ago* when I started dancing I would fall apart when teachers corrected me with even a twinge of sharpness in their voice, and I was a 22 year old woman. This girl! I could literally be her mom and here we are asking her to have an adult reaction to a really challenging part of growing up. I made sure I told her I'm just finally able to take corrections without feeling hurt and I'm 35.
AND THEN! I was like, oh hey! I'VE GROWN! Which, duh, but also, it's nice to realize.
This is the big life goal. Continually growing and learning about yourself. Continually learning about the new growth parts of yourself. If you're always growing then you're open to new ideas, which means you're not overly attached to a previous idea. Which means your brain and your heart stay young and pliable.
These blogs, these concepts, these signs of maturity, they all support each other. We can have them each in differing amounts. We can grow in them individually. But ultimately they all build on each other! So if there is building to happen then we need to pursue growth.
Now that I'm SO OLD I'm seeing a new trend. My peers are overwhelmed by life and the growth slows. Then I see the generation ahead of us and they seem to have stopped looking for new challenges. I look to the generation past them and see actual resistance to growth or change of any kind. The logical lesson for me here is that growth is a choice we make CONTINUALLY throughout our lives. It's a thing to be continually pursued, hunted, sought after, achieved, celebrated, enjoyed.
There's a woman at our studio who is in her 80's and takes ballet class, has started taking jazz, and is also in a weekly ski lesson during the winter months. She travels by herself to places she's interested in like Prague and Budapest, and she is constantly making comments like, "We always keep learning, don't we!" Which is the single driving force behind her incredible life. She NEVER STOPS GROWING!! I mean seriously, this woman is my life goal. I'm going to be like her when I grow up.
What are you doing now to grow? You know I'm about to cite a meditation and prayer practice for this portion of the blog. Sit, pray, ask, "where and how can I grow next?" Do a life audit, find a friend to have intentional conversations with about the things you would like to expand on, or ya know, see me about stepping into the Joy Guide practice; I've got openings!
Stay inspired. Stay open to being taught. Stay open to people and ideas. Stay soft to the changes in life. Keep growing.
For all you who are in to what the Bible has to say about it there's a ton in there about growth and maturity. Maybe a quick search. Here's the one I like to reflect on...
Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God. (Hebrews 6:1)
*fun side note! It's actually 13 years exactly since my very first ballet class. Every time I think about it I compose a love letter of gratitude to God for letting me be a dancer.
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