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Your Choice: Caterpillar Comfort or Butterfly Being?

Unlike butterflies, people have a choice to stay caterpillars -- comfortable and safe -- or to grow.

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When you look at a butterfly do you first notice its beauty? 

Growth defined is: the process of developing or maturing physically, mentally, or spiritually.

A butterfly becomes after first being a caterpillar. She eats and eats and stores up all she can so that she can begin a transition.

Here’s the thing about the transition stage: it doesn’t happen overnight. It can last weeks, months, or even longer. The pupa, as it is called, or chrysalis, often appears to be nothing to the naked eye. It seemingly is just hanging under a branch, hidden among leaves, or even underground.  

It may look like nothing is happening, but on the inside big changes are happening! Legs develop, wings develop, and original cells convert to energy to give the burgeoning butterfly the “lift” she needs.

Unless the caterpillar dies, she is becoming a butterfly. This is a part of her DNA, part of her place on this planet, and according to entomologists, she does not feel pain.

This same story can be applied to humans, and yet we are more complex beings. 

Here’s the story in human terms: a human being exists. She eats, she sleeps, and she goes about her business exactly as she knows to do. She’s a caterpillar and may even be a “very hungry caterpillar.” 

Yet, unlike the butterfly, human beings have choice to stay a caterpillar. Those who stay caterpillars experience life hungry and exactly as they know it to be: comfortable and safe.

Then, there are those who discover what it is they yearn for and come to the awareness that it’s beyond the next meal, the next job, or the next relationship. The “very hungry caterpillar” realizes she yearns for something greater than “the thing.” 

Here lies the choice: does she choose to continue being hungry or does she choose to get uncomfortable in pursuit of that greater life?

Should she choose the greater life, the experience or the life she knows she deserves, she will transition. To the outside, it might look like chaos or nothing, or it may look like “different and strange,” but to that person she knows it’s simply The Growth Zone. 

On one side there’s comfort and predictability and on the other side there’s magnificent beauty, purpose, and creation. It’s the part in the middle that provides the structure. 

So, why coaching? Because a coach is like the exterior of the chrysalis, holding space for the caterpillar to grow and calling her (or him) out into the world as she or he was always meant to be: God’s undeniable creation. 


Contact me, Annie Petersen, at [email protected] to schedule a complimentary Discovery Session today. 

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