Strong Roots, Flexible Branches, Detachable Leaves
A strongly rooted tree, or strong sense of self, will likely endure the storm. Flexible branches allow for movement without breakage. The psychological analogy is flexible thinking, or the ability to stay open to new ideas and new ways of engaging in work and in relationships.
Transition often involves letting go of ideas, relationships, behaviors that no longer work. Thus the falling of leaves.
In Colorado we are regaled with the spectacle of leaves that turn from green to red and gold, and then drift silently to the ground. We are comforted knowing that in the spring there will be new life, new leaves, and new lessons.