TRANSITIONS

Ducks in a row

What
Are your
Limiting 
Beliefs?-2.png

Have you ever felt unsure of what the next move is in your life? You can't go back but you aren't quite sure what forward looks like? I have been sitting in that space this month. I have a clear idea of what I want to do and who I want to serve, and I want to move into that space with integrity. I'm just not exactly sure how it is going to unfold.

In a recent blog post I took a big step in saying where I want to focus my work going forward. I expected that I would have a number of people unsubscribe from my newsletter. I didn't have anyone unsubscribe.

I was talking to a friend recently and she said, in response to my newsletter, "You are not there yet. I'll know when you are there. It will be clear." And what I heard was, "You have no idea what you are doing." To be fair, she didn't say that. She said, "I don't think you are there yet." She was encouraging me to push even further into the work I want to do around spirituality and women.

But for some reason I became fixated on having everything sorted out before I started doing anything. Yesterday I was reflecting on our conversation. "You are not there YET." And I realized that I've been waiting until I am completely clear what products and services I'll be offering my clients. I've been trying to get all my ducks in a row.

But here's the truth: I'VE NEVER HAD MY DUCKS IN A ROW.

And neither have you .

Maybe they were for five minutes but chances are something happened and then very quickly those ducks were out of line.

I work with women who don't have their ducks in a row! How's that for a tag line? I get transition. As women we are often in transition. I understand that in between space we often find ourselves living in. For me the most difficult transition has been around the changes I've made in what I believe and how I practice my beliefs. It was difficult to leave behind something that was so significant at one point in my life. And yet, staying the same is not an option. As Rob Bell says, "Once you have seen, you can't unsee. Once you have tasted, you can't untaste." Letting go of having my spiritual ducks in a row was a big deal for me. (Am I pushing this metaphor? Probably.)

If you are tired of trying to keep up the appearance of having your ducks in a row this space is for you. If you feel like you are swimming in circles. Great. If you don't even know which direction you are heading - welcome. You are in the right place. Together, we'll come up with a better metaphor for this crazy life. Let's stop listening to that critical voice - or as a wise woman once said, "Shut the duck up."

Holding Space for What is Yet To Be

Recently I've discovered the Irish poet, philosopher John O'Donohue. A friend introduced me to him through this book. (Spoiler alert for friends - you will probably be getting a copy of this book for Christmas.) 

 (Note: Click on the book cover to go to Amazon.ca  I am an affiliate and I receive a very small remuneration from each sale.)

(Note: Click on the book cover to go to Amazon.ca  I am an affiliate and I receive a very small remuneration from each sale.)

I love the poems in this book. There are poems to mark many occasions that provide a meaningful way to create space between us to acknowledge those events. Tonight I am driving a friend to the airport. She is travelling alone and is feeling some anxiety. Last night I wrote out the poem for The Traveler from the section on Thresholds. I love the idea of offering a blessing to someone on the threshold of an adventure.

I think there is something special about a handwritten note. Once our devices are on airplane mode a note is still accessible. A note that specifically address a current situation, contains a blessing, encouragement or comfort in the journey is a gift from the heart.

Today marks the beginning of a new year for me. I'm stepping into it with gratitude and intentionality.  I've been reading this poem and letting it work its way into my psyche. I leave you with these words from the poet to reflect on your own beginnings. Just sit with them and find courage to purse your story.

 

FOR A NEW BEGINNING

by John O'Donohue

In out-of-the-way places of the heart,

Where your thoughts never think to wander,

This beginning has been quietly forming,

Waiting until you were ready to emerge.

For a long time it has watched your desire,

Feeling the emptiness growing inside you,

Noticing how you willed yourself on,

Still unable to leave what you had outgrown.

It watched you play with the seduction of safety

And the gray promises that sameness whispered,

Heard the waves of turmoil rise and relent,

Wondered would you always live like this.

Then the delight, when your courage kindled,

And out you stepped onto new ground,

Your eyes young again with energy and dream,

A path of plenitude opening before you.

Though your destination is not yet clear

You can trust the promise of this opening;

Unfurl yourself into the grace of beginning

That is one with your life’s desire.

Awaken your spirit to adventure;

Hold nothing back, learn to find ease in risk;

Soon you will be home in a new rhythm,

For your soul senses the world that awaits you.

 

Is there someone in your life that you could hold space for today? Try sending them a note. If you want to take it to the next level - mail it!

Don't get out your Fall clothes just yet...

You can feel it in the air. The nights are cooler and the days are a little shorter where I live. Fall planters are on the shelves at the garden centres. I saw Halloween candy being stocked in a store. Schools are back this week or next week depending where you live.

Where did summer go?

I've been thinking a lot about how we end things. I've got more to say on that topic coming up. I've worked with people and organizations in transition for a long time. I've been through many of my own transitions. I love change. I can hurry into something new with barely a glance back. I think I am becoming wiser as I age. I am more eager to try and enjoy what is and not be in such a rush.

In my work with people in transition, I have become aware of how important it is to end well. Good closure can help us transition well. So, before you get out your flannel sheets, I'm suggesting you take some time to end summer well. You'll thank me in February for reminding you now to squeeze out every drop of summer.

Here are some thoughts I have for you to consider:

  • What could you do to savour these last weeks of summer?
  • What is something that you wanted to do this summer but didn't get around to doing? Is it too late or can you fit it in still? I wanted to go stand up paddle boarding - I think I can still fit that in on one of the warm days remaining.
  • What are some of the things you can only do in the summer that you love? Make plans to enjoy as much of it as you can now.
  • How long can you go before you need to stop wearing sandals?
  • Can you get away from your desk and get outside for lunch as much as possible this month?
  • Will you dare to wear white after Labour Day?

It can be so tempting to rush into the new season. And for some personalities we are drawn to 'what's next.' As we head into the last official long weekend of the summer - take time to enjoy it and be in the moment. It will end soon enough.