Every seven years, you shed your skin. In other words, in this minute, you are entirely different then you were seven years ago.
It makes sense when you think that the cellular make up of the body is formed by the nutrients and energy taken in (this is why non-processed, organic food is so essential!), and the cells reform based on physical, spiritual, and mental practices. No matter what, in seven years’ time, physical, spiritual, and mental practices have reformed you entirely.
However, how you CHOOSE to let the reformation occur is what determines your potential. You can either reform or transform. By not resisting change and embracing non-attachment, you can reach your FULLEST potential.
I read this inspiring story about a woman who lived a romantic life of a rich twenty-something in New York City. She was an online magazine editor, making tons of money, partying every night, and surviving on champagne and late-night lean cuisines. Then she got cancer. The doctors wanted to amputate a limb to remove the cancer, but instead she tried Gerson Therapy, a strict and rigorous regime of hourly juicing, round-the-clock coffee enemas, a basic vegan diet, and a program of cancer-fighting supplements. She used this awful experience with cancer to become a writer, holistic health coach, and the creator of the health and wellness website, The Wellness Warrior.
In her words, “Before cancer became part of my daily vocabulary, my life lacked meaning. It was fun, and I thought I was living to my full potential, but it wasn’t until all of the superficial trimmings were forced to take a back seat that I realized what I was really capable of creating for myself.”
This is an extreme example of shedding skin. Nevertheless, she CHOSE to detach from her party life to recreate herself. She could have gone the Western medicine route (Dad, I know this is not always a bad thing!). She chose instead the alternative lifestyle, which led her into her fullest potential.
Sometimes these giant catalysts are the most effective, but even without them, we can shed skin to reach our core selves. Shedding skin can include changing your diet, trying different types of exercise, and even moving on from friends and romantic partners that no longer encourage your physical, spiritual, and mental growth. In essence, the practice of detachment and shedding skin frequently can free us from this illusion that things will not change.
When I say “practice detachment,” I don’t mean practice passivity, indifference, or carelessness. I mean for you to live actively, passionately, and carefully while infusing life with the skill of grace. I have spoken about grace here, understanding force and gripping in the body, and I have spoken about detachment here, coming to terms with attaching and detaching as part of growth. It is the same idea. We’re just exploring the nuances of experiencing change, practicing grace, and knowing that growth is a process–never a perfection.
The key is that YOU ARE DYNAMIC and EVER-CHANGING. Sorry–there is not a magical stopping place of your fullest potential. The difficulty is maintaining your alignment when you’re constantly changing. For instance, how do you fall in love and remain detached? How do you start a business without becoming wrapped up in the outcome? Or how can you have children without constantly caring about their well-being?
Simply, your fullest potential has to change with your shedding skin…
“Detachment is rarely something we achieve once and for all. It’s a moment-by-moment, day-by-day process of accepting reality as it presents itself, doing our best to align our actions with what we think is right, and surrendering the outcome.” -Sally Kempton
Use this moment as a chance to begin again. Look around and welcome change with grace and integrity. If someone, something, or some thinking is not encouraging your fullest potential, shed the skin. Look forward and surrender to change with THE LOVE, GRACE, AND INTEGRITY you’re capable of creating for yourself.