The 3 Phases of Transformation (and what it means for your website)

Remember in Elementary School learning that every story needed a beginning, middle, and end?

Leave out any of the sections and the story feels confusing, boring, incomplete.

It turns out that this applies not just to creative writing, but also to any act of transformation - from creating a work of art, to your website, to learning a new skill, getting a new job, or becoming a butterfly.

Each act of transformation/creation involves Opening, Chaos, and Mastery.


We begin.

We experiment, create, flop, soar, try and try, dissolve, become, and then -

We complete the project, we master the skill, we start the job, we spread our wings, we establish a new level of stability.

phases website creation

But often, we get stuck in one phase or another.


Because it turns out most of us have one primary phase that we prefer over the others.


If you prefer Opening, you love to begin. You might be filled with tons of ideas, have a dozen books you’re reading at once, and a myriad of projects started. You like to start, to inspire, to have newness. But you may also struggle with consistency, with building on momentum, with patience for the end result.

If you prefer Chaos, you love the messiness of the creative process. You may seek to be creative in all areas, to think outside the box, to be constantly experimenting and trying new things. You like fun, play, drama. But you may also struggle with self-sabotage, with ‘rules’ or perceived restriction, with a need to be always unique.

If you prefer Mastery, you love stability. You likely enjoy building on past successes, pay close attention to details, and serve as a container for creative flow. But you may also struggle with being stuck in a rut, with fear around starting new endeavors, and with standing out.


And yes, you can have a secondary preference/tendency or even be fairly evenly spread over all 3 (though this is more rare).


Gia Combs-Ramirez outlines the phases in more detail in her book The Way of Transformation, and includes a quiz if you’re interested in learning more about the phases and your particular tendencies.


But here’s what all this means for creating your website or other creative projects:

  • If you hire a designer/support person, choose someone with a different phase preference so you don’t get stuck in the same place, or hopefully at all. (In case you were wondering, I’m all 3 phases! This means that I sometimes get stuck in aspects from all 3, but I’m also pretty adept at moving through the creation/transformation process.)

  • Know where you get stuck and what you need in order to move through

    • If you’re an Opener you need to choose. Decide on one or two things and get support to follow through.

    • If you’re a Chaos you need to find structure so your creative energy can flow without overwhelming. Look for ways to incorporate what you’ve already done instead of always reinventing and get support to help create structure that doesn’t feel stifling.

    • If you’re a Master you need to stretch to try new things, for with them comes growth and deeper fulfillment. Get support to release the fear around beginning and standing out.

When you understand your inherent preference and where you tend to get stuck you can move through the creative process, and transformation/change in general, with greater ease and mastery. This means more of your work makes it out into the world and you experience deeper fulfillment!

Cheers to that!