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Insights: Regeneration
May 10, 2011


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"Deep, unspeakable suffering may well be called a baptism, a regeneration, the initiation into a new state"

- Ira Gershwin

So, how do you feel after the wealth of public holidays we've been enjoying?

Hopefully 'regenerated' will be a word that springs to mind?

Not without drama

For us the holiday period was certainly not without its drama - and I'm not referring to the shooting of Bin Laden!

On the Monday before last we awoke to an early telephone call from our cleaner, Zoleka. You may remember her from the last issue of Insights before Easter, titled 'Life Coping' .

Whether it was my early morning brain fog or the panic in her voice that caused it I don't know but at first I couldn't work out what she was trying to tell me.


But after a few minutes it became clear that she had just witnessed her home burning down in a terrible blaze that consumed over 1500 homes in the informal settlement in which she lives. Thank heavens neither her, her husband or her two small children were hurt in the blaze.

And so started an eye-opening process of regeneration!

Such was the devastation caused by the fire and the number of people displaced (over 5 000) that it would have been inhumane not to reach out and offer shelter. We have since been accommodating Zoleka and her family and ferrying her husband back and forth to the township so that he could start the process of rebuilding their home.

'Liberating' our discards

My wife Jenni has been doing an amazing job of rummaging around to find all manner of things that we have had stored in various nooks and crannies of our house and garage. We managed to 'liberate' all manner of building materials, crockery, utensils and small appliances that we had long since stopped using because of their age or slight defects.

I used the word 'liberate' because I was reminded of a book I once read about clutter and how 'energy stagnation' results from storing or holding on to discarded items rather than putting them back into circulation so that they might add value to someone else.


The look on Zoleka's face each time we 'unearthed' some piece of our discarded 'junk' – which to her was nothing less than a life sustaining treasure in her time of need – was priceless!

In the last two weeks I have learnt a lot about the power of regeneration and how resilient humans can be in the face of the most difficult and trying circumstances.

An important responsibility

As I relate the experiences of the past days and weeks to the New Insights life coach training business and life coaching services in general, I realise the responsibility we have to help people 'declutter' their lives and release stagnant energy.

Dealing with emotional clutter

Sometimes emotional clutter can be more debilitating than physical clutter. By emotional clutter I mean struggling to purge oneself of the ideas, concepts, beliefs and behaviors that are not working in one's life. The result is a trapping of energy and a slow sapping of one's vitality.

My advice to anyone dealing with emotional clutter is this:

Don't wait for some disaster, like the one that beset Zoleka and her family, to open your eyes to the power of regeneration. Resolve to do something different today that will start the process of liberating the trapped energy in your life.

Even something small like taking time out to connect with nature and breathe in some fresh air, doing a random act of kindness or writing a letter to yourself to explain why you need to change and what you are going to do, will work wonders to start the process.

Till next week...

Warm regards,


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