by Nirmala Raniga, Founder and Director
“Everything is continuously changing, including your thoughts, feelings, and molecules. Accept that change is a part of life. Evolution calls upon us to adapt to change with creativity.” – Dr. David Simon
Life is a process of constant change. On a physical level, we are constantly evolving based on what is going on around us. Our bodies react to our environment on a biological level, and as humans we also react to it on a cultural and technological level, which allow us to occupy new spaces without the need for biological adaptation.
Evolution is a process of growth that is all about change. To respond to our constantly changing surroundings, we have to evolve in order to survive and in the case of new technologies, in order to keep ourselves from being left behind in isolation. It is also important that we allow ourselves to evolve on the level of the mind—in order for what is going in within our inner world to respond to what is happening around us.
This expansion on the mental level allows a flow and a movement that enables us to make the changes we need to with ease, so that our response to our outer world will be effortless. When our mind resists change, it creates a constriction in the natural process of change, blocking our evolution, which results in suffering. Without movement in the mind, we begin to struggle, first on the emotional level and then on the ever-changing physical level as our brain sends chemical signals to body telling it that it must respond to our outside world as a threat.
When we are unhealthy or suffering from an addiction, the root of this issue is unresolved emotions we hold in our bodies. We need to heal from these emotions, and the reason we do not is due to fear. In these cases, we may engage in behavior which initially provides us with the rewards we are searching for in our lives– fulfilling a deep-seated need in us to obtain relief or to belong, albeit in a temporary manner. We may be seeking comfort, affection, attention, appreciation and acceptance, but are looking in the wrong place. Due to an illusion of safety, fear of change may cause us to hold onto a habit, belief or situation that no longer serves us. In this case, the question becomes: How do we reduce the fear?
The goal should be to cultivate flexibility in order to assist ourselves in accepting change and allowing that change to happen. This process can take time and we may need support. When we are in a space of fear, we do not want to try. This can result in repeating patterns of behavior that are damaging. Instead of risking our health by defaulting to choices that are harmful, why not instead choose to use tools that will promote health and wellbeing? Give yourself permission to evolve: take a risk that will enable you to grow. Allow yourself to be open to all modalities of treatment, as what works for you may not work for others.
One way to reduce fear of change is the resolution of unresolved feelings and emotions through a therapeutic process. Yoga and meditation can also be extremely helpful. The Soul Questions are also a very powerful and effective tool that allows an individual to grow. Tools such as these help us to create awareness that enables us to ally with the force of evolution by becoming an active participant in the process. Embracing the evolutionary process is allowing your awareness to expand beyond the intellect and allowing for change that increases your longevity and wellbeing.
Learn about the Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center programs designed to assist and support you in your process of change.