"FINDING A FORTUNE IN THE LINING OF AN OLD COAT" Aggression and Creativity
People call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat or a prostitute.
-- Rebecca West
Fair -- this word is to be used only in reference to a carnival-type event and not as an expression of justice; for not only is such usage unpleasant but also, I assure you, quite useless.
-- Fran Lebowitz
Yesterday I dared to struggle. Today I dare to win.
-- Bernadette Devlin
There are normal identity shifts during the middle years that enhance our opportunities to live creative lives. One important development is the emergence of healthy, ordinary aggression, which we can harness to work effectively for us. We make the most of our aggression when we are able to link the available energy to our creative attitudes. This combination fuels our actions.
Growth is easier when change happens naturally, when new aspects of ourselves gently unfold, and when we welcome the change. Growth is difficult when we fight against change and refuse to accept emerging aspects of ourselves. We are most apprehensive when we fear that change will take us too far away from our most basic sense of ourselves. Who have I become? It is frightening to think that we could become women who are foreign to the deepest knowledge we have of ourselves. Yet, in order to remain psychologically alive, we must allow new behaviors, like assertiveness and aggressiveness, to emerge. Identities that may have been complete when we were in our twenties need revision in our forties and fifties.