Maintaining our lives throughout cycles requires high levels of personal confidence, self-responsible behavior, and trust in forces beyond our control. To learn the art of self-renewal, we need skills to:
- Design the chapters of our lives;
- Entrepreneur and manage each chapter of our lives;
- Embrace necessary transitions between the chapters of our lives where we can invent the main themes and dimensions of our next chapters;
- Make self-renewal and learning the central features of our lifestyle and work style as we renew ourselves, over and over, throughout the years.
The renewal cycle has beginnings and endings. It typically begins with a strong inclination to make something important happen and ends when that effort no longer works or seems important. Beginnings are romantic times, fostering passionate commitments. Endings require us to let go of some dream or effort that has gone stale or awry, and either to fix it or find a different one. That’s the cycle of renewal. Here’s the learning:
- Learn how to cooperate with change in the here-and-now, and to use change as an opportunity for growth and discovery in every chapter of our lives.
- Learn how to begin each chapter of our lives with feisty romantic determination to make it succeed.
- When our chapters are limp and exhausted, and the end is just a matter of time, learn how to design new directions into the future.
- Learn how to end each chapter with style and poise. Learn to “let go” of what we can’t “hold on” to, in all the parts of our lives.
- Learn how our relationships, careers, work organizations, communities, and social institutions go through this same cycle of change, at varying paces.