The Evolution of Engagement

“We cannot live the afternoon of life according to the program of life’s morning; for what in the morning was true will in evening become a lie.” – C.G. Jung

Second star to the right and straight on ’til morning.” Beingmade of stardust should make that easier for us all right?

As I’ve grown older, the stories I’ve told myself about engagement have changed. Its inevitable that as our life experience lengthens our ideas about what, how, when, where, and why we’re sustainably connected to things within and around ourselves will surely evolve according to our interests, abilities, positions, reflections, determinations, and attitudes.

Beginning with our lives as children, we form ideas and test our personal beliefs about connections with other people. We essentially spend the rest of our lives testing, proving, and reaffirming those ideas. Either we discover the idea of independence, or the reality of interdependence. We strike on the notion of separation or the practicality of unity. This can be our whole lives, testing and retesting these ideas. It can be as basic simple as the nurturing we receive from our parents, and frequently is.

The opportunities arise as our life transitions and we’re faced with more opportunities to more consciously engage to the world with and around us. As young people we learn to choose and remove friends. Going into our adulthood we’re faced with jobs, continuing formal educations, and starting families. Aging up we look back on where we’ve been and look forward where we’re going.

On my own pathway, as I’ve reflected this journey has felt so natural, spanning across my career and into my personal life with ease. I’ve discovered logical sequencing that felt unplanned but nevertheless turned out absolutely right. Apparently rhythmless, engagements have arrived, left, dreampt, slept, moved, rested, acted, retired, and so much more. The greatest solace I’ve found is to breathe it all in deeply and plunge into being here now.

That may be the grand circle of my life, launched from childhood outwards and back in again. If you’re looking for the way, I might suggest the formula that J.M. Barrie laid out in Peter Pan: “Second star to the right and straight on ’til morning.” If that seems obtuse, just remember that it’s all made of stardust, and the best place any of us can begin is within.

CommonAction staff are available to train on personal engagement, Heartspace, and much more. Learn what we can do for you by and call Adam at (360)489-9680.

Written by Adam Fletcher, this article was originally posted to Learn more at!

Published by Adam F.C. Fletcher

I'm a speaker and writer who researches, writes and shares about youth, education, and history. Learn more about me at

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