“We often talk about love of place, by which we mean our love for places, but seldom of how the places love us back, of what they give us. They give us continuity, something to return to, and offer a familiarity that allows some portion of our own lives to remain connected and coherent. They give us an expansive scale in which our troubles are set into context, in which the largeness of the world is a balm to loss, trouble, and ugliness. And distant places give us refuge in territories where our own histories aren’t so deeply entrenched and we can imagine other stories, other selves, or just drink up quiet and respite.
The bigness of the world is redemption. Despair compresses you into a small space, and a depression is literally a hollow in the ground. To dig deeper into the self, to go underground, is sometimes necessary, but so is the other route of getting out of yourself, into the larger world, into the openness in which you need not clutch your story and your troubles so tightly to your chest. Being able to travel both ways matters, and sometimes the way back into the heart of the question begins by going outward and beyond. This is the expansiveness that sometimes comes literally in a landscape or that tugs you out of yourself in a story.” –Rebecca Solnit, The Faraway Nearby pp 30-31
Last November I had the great good fortune of attending TEDxRainier here in Seattle. I’ve just launched a very cool 30 day project inspired by Patti Dobrowolski’s talk. First, I created the drawing you see above that depicts my current reality and my desired new reality. Next, I committed to 30 days of 3 bold steps per day creatively inspired by both the left and right side of my brain. (The drawings are what make this possible.) I’m in my second week and all I can say is WOW!!! Below is a video of the talk that started it all AND links to FREE blank printable template maps. Check it out only if you are really, no kidding, in the mood to dream up a Desired New Reality! Thank You Patti!
“She was the woman that every young girl dreams of being!” These words were uttered in hushed awe as my friend described an older woman who had lived in the house my friend had just purchased. (NOT Lynn Twist, she enters my story later. ) My friend’s retelling of this woman’s life story sounded nice AND I realized it was WAY different from what I had dreamed of becoming as a young girl. Like each of us, I had a unique set of dreams.
What did I dream of being? I dreamed of racing sailboats on the wide blue ocean with a team that won races and swaggered into the yacht club brimming with confidence at day’s end. I dreamed of leading a wildly successful business. I dreamed of having a husband who was creative, entertaining and a kind warrior too. I dreamed of engaging in work that made our world BETTER.
After I, more or less, achieved these things, there were deeper dreams to consider. The next level of dreams includes the wisdom gleaned from the unexpected disappointments that were not at ALL what I had hoped. You see, it is at the point where we have some success and messy learning under our belts, that we can turn toward our most potent legacy upon this earth. To that end, here are a few key questions to answer in the middle of the journey of life.
Who is the woman that I dream of being when this is all said and done?
What are ways I want to be and what is the impact I want to have as a leader?
What do I want to stand for?
Now is the time to create and live into your unique legacy. A legacy that builds on all that you have done and are NOW. A legacy that will truly inspire the next generation. I’m here to support you in getting clear on what is next AND turning toward it, in your unique way using your voice. YES, now is the time!
My parents have both had health challenges. They are 99 and 94 and live close by. Since December 7th I have been with them in hospital rooms and ambulances. I’ve held their hands and watched them heroically face their destiny. I’ve had moments where I’ve done well and moments when I’ve fallen apart.
Through it all, I kept repeating “This will be the best Christmas ever.” There was not much evidence to support this idea. None of the trappings of a beautiful holiday seemed close at hand. And…in the end I did attract a lovely Christmas eve dinner with Kevin and a beautiful church service that was freely available to me. I just had to walk through the door. My older sisters were tirelessly present and many, many friends offered prayers and blessings. Each and every holiday card this year was treasured in ways that their senders can’t even imagine.
My parents are not having the end of life experience that I would have hoped for them. I don’t know if there is anything I can do about that. The best solution I could muster was to get them into the same room together. Now I simply hold them with courageous and compassionate strength as I allow them to do their thing, whatever that looks like for them.
Yet the questions of leadership remain. How do I take a stand for what they need when I really don’t know what they need and I can’t trust my emotional responses to what I am witnessing? The answer simply seems to be to unfold one moment at a time. One breath at a time. Keep turning my mind back to my heart’s wisdom and courage. Keep trusting Grace. Keep following the rays of light. Keep savoring each and every moment of Joy. Keep turning away from the dark thoughts and surrendering myself and each of us into the light of Love.
Now is the time! Lately I’ve been living by this phrase; calling myself forth with it. Whenever I feel a call to inspired action, I think to myself. Now is the time! Timing is so important to success and here’s the thing, time does not wait for us to be free of fear, doubt or to have everything all pieced together in a comfortable planned way. Time doesn’t care if we feel we have enough resources or money. It doesn’t wait while we ascertain if we have done enough research. Time demands faith and trust.
Here is my challenge: When your heart invites you to step forward, do not falter or hold yourself back–go! You see if we hold ourselves back, one day we’ll regret it, as time does not wait. We might wait for the time to come again, but time is merciless. It doesn’t stop. It moves on. When the invitation arrives, yes, is the correct answer.
To those of you who are considering joining this year’s Secret Society, I repeat….Now is the time! The application period closes November 30. Click here for your invitation.
This week’s post, inspired by a teaching of Gurumayi Chidvilasanda from her book Resonate with Stillness, October 28.
It turns out that wondering “Will I do this?” is a more effective approach to achieving a goal then exerting the determined linear will of the ego as in “I will do this!!!” (The later usually accompanied by a tight jaw, clenched fist and a great deal of effort to avoid feeling guilty or ashamed if I do not do it. Get the picture?)
If we have questioning, curious minds we are more intrinsically motivated to change, shift and let go of what is no longer serving. So my friends, the quality and regularity of our internal questions reigns supreme over our willfulness when it comes to this whole business of achieving. Fascinating huh????
Dare I say, this so explains my ongoing awe of the effectiveness of private coaching! The sheer value of a relationship that is designed to ask (and keep asking) powerful questions that shift our inner self talk away from the pure will where, we so easily get mired, alone in our own heads.
I received this image on a newsletter from the smart savvy team at the Clarion Group. It’s quite provocative and inspiring on so many levels. Of course, I want to be the frog!!! I often get to be the frog leaping over the community of turtles. The truth is, I am a turtle too. In fact, I would venture to declare that it is my turtle time when I am deep inside, protected and connected to the muddy earth that has the frog in me be able to fly so freely. Unfortunately, life sometimes has a way of forcing me into my shell. Not always comfortable. Always beneficial.
Many of us have aspired only to be frogs and been rewarded quite handsomely for our frog like natures. Trouble is without the turtle influence it’s easy to end up burned out or overwhelmed. How about we extol both the frog, the turtle and the transition between?