Change is a constant.
This shift from one state to another means that we will constantly be in transitions.
Most of which we hardly realize anymore. We say hello. We say goodbye.
These small rituals structure the transitions, but as they have become habits we lose touch with the transition and focus on the rules of being polite.
And yet, these habits remain useful, the repetition teaches us to let go of whatever there was before.
When you watch a person rush from one place to the other, running as fast as they can to arrive on time you’ll notice how saying hello is transformed. Either they rush through it as they are still running in their head, or they’ll stop themselves before saying hello to catch their breath to be able to say hello.
The habit interrupts us and creates space for the transition to happen. Either because one person knows that the other has not yet “arrived” or because the other takes some additional time to arrive. People help one another to be together.
Saying goodbye, on the other hand, requires the ability to let go. It’s a natural event in life and one we’ve learned to recognize by saying good-bye. But as we’ve made it a habit we forget the importance of letting go and recognizing what we are letting go.
Something which is often very visible in online training is how hard it is for participants to let go of the hope they came with. Even more so when they couldn’t find the time and the attention to live up to their expectations.
It’s a struggle we know from all kinds of life events, but one we don’t recognize as easily as when it comes to leaving school, moving away from a place we used to live in or losing a friend.
Paying attention to the ritual allows to stay aware of the change and tend to the transition.