Have you ever heard of the process a butterfly has to go through to get out of its cocoon?
They struggle. A lot. People (particularly children) who might see this are tempted to help.
However, the butterfly must go through the struggle alone because the physical effort needed to break the seal and wriggle free also pushes fluid from its body into its wings. If they don’t go through that exertion their body remains full of fluid, their wings can’t unfurl and they won’t be able to fly properly, or at all.
When they do break free they are exhausted and need to rest for a while. When they are ready they expand their wings fully, gently test them out and then they are off, up on the breeze living the full life that was intended for them.
Of course we coaches use this metaphor frequently to reassure clients who are going through a difficult challenge. It can help give meaning to the present and hope for a better, stronger, more resilient future.
Most importantly, it can help them be patient with themselves as they imagine their own wings unfurling, in their own time, when they are ready.
Until next week, be patient with yourself,