Friday, October 21, 2011

The Caterpillar-butterfly theory


I often wonder why we tend to fall back into bad habits, make the same mistakes over and why life often feels like repeating itself. My theory is that for real change to happen one has to go through a caterpillar-butterfly process.
When I went through painful experiences, I assumed that I would have learnt a lesson and I would be able to avoid repeating the same mistakes. I often assumed that the pain occurred and at the same time the hunger for change would be enough of a catalyst for the same things not to re-occur. I was wrong. I tried to look at the cases where I feel a ‘true transformation process’ has taken place and I came up with my caterpillar-butterfly theory. So there is the pain/the experience, followed by a moment of reflection and introversion. Once that phase is over, shed the old skin, free yourself and emerge beautifully transformed.
The sad part about this theory is that even when I thought I had become a butterfly, I often found out that I was still only a caterpillar. I basically got stuck between the safe walls of my cocoon. So why is it so difficult to go through truly transformative processes? The difficult part of real change is that it does not only mean regretting the mistake or showing good will to get rid of a habit, but to actually go into an in-depth inquiry about oneself. And then, it is about stepping out of the comfort zone and to accept the change. All of this sounds so obvious and simple...but I promise you, it is not.

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