This mornings project of choice was moving books out of my office, prepping for the moving in of new office furniture. I didn’t get very far because two books that have been on my shelf for years, for some reason this morning I decided I needed to open the covers and peek inside.
To think that I was 13 the first time I read Illusions by Richard Bach (and 8 when I read Jonathan Livingston Seagull). Until today, I had not thought about the impact reading these books at such a young age have had on me. I’ve read both books countless times over the years, but I don’t think I could recite one passage, or quote from the books (I explain why below).
Fast forward to 2010. The year I crossed paths with Maria DeCarvalo, M.Div – an Episcopalian Priest and a High Performance Executive Coach. At that time in my life I was teaching a weight loss course/lifestyle course I had created. It was very good, even ‘doctor approved’ and it worked, but only for a short time because despite my best efforts, most people could not sustain ‘new habits’ for the long term. I was sharing my frustration with Maria about habits and she told me about the book ‘Immunity to Change’.
Today, eight years later, having completely forgotten any specifics about this book, I sat on the floor in my office, flipping pages and this highlighted sentence, jumped out at me – “These three adult meaning systems—the socialized mind, self-authorizing mind, and self-transforming mind—make sense of the world, and operate within it, in profoundly different ways.” Amazing! And here’s why…
I recently completed teaching a course I created called ‘The Uncluttered Women | Overcome Overwhelm’. A week before the course was to begin I was mucking about for a way to present everything I know about breaking the cycle of overwhelm (without it being overwhelming) and out of the blue an idea for a ‘framework’ came to me and lo and behold—this framework for organizing what I teach completely embodies the “three adult meaning systems,” or at least my interpretation of what that highlighted sentence meant. Wow!
My entire adult life, I have labeled myself as someone with a terrible memory. Don’t ask me to play Trivia. If I’m on your team, you will lose – being able to recite details and remember specifics is not my strength.
I learned a valuable lesson (again) – don’t apply negative labels to yourself. Remembering details isn’t my strength for sure, but when I read, I feel. Those feelings sift through me and settle in my cells. It’s almost as if words become a part of me. The words don’t lodge in my brain, instead they settle into my soul, moving me through life and waiting for the right moment and the right time to rise-up and influence the creation of something wonderful.
As the reluctant messiah says in Richard Bach’s book, “everything is an illusion”. So we might as well create an illusion that includes plenty of nice things to say to ourselves (and others too).
And my office project…it’s still not done, but I am about half way through reading ‘Illusions’ for the 100th time. Priorities! 😉
PS. On the backside of Maria DeCarvalho’s business card, which has been hanging on my office wall for eight years, are the words “What Gets In Your Way?” What gets in your way? Share below in the comments.
The word Mindset has become quite trendy and for good reason. How the mind is set, has a huge impact on how we live our life and how we view ourselves. Simply put mindsets are an established set of attitudes.
There are two types of mindsets: ‘stuck’ and ‘unstuck’ and you get to choose which system you want running your thoughts.
For years I operated from the ‘stuck’ mindset, even though I was an upbeat, positive person with a great attitude, inside, I was overwhelmed, didn’t like myself much and struggled with depression and anxiety. My mindset was ‘stay busy, stay in control, keep pushing forwards’. My inner world (which so impacts how we dance in our outer world) began to shift when I learned how to tap into the ‘unstuck’ mindset system.
I was about to write that 2017 has been ‘one of those years’, but in reflection I realized I’ve had a series of ‘years’, with each year building on the other, layering one learning opportunity (aka challenge) after another.
Every challenge has become the catalyst for an ever-deepening awareness of what is working and what isn’t – a bit more of this please, a little less of that please.All those emotions and uncomfortable thoughts, that I used to sweep under the proverbial rug, are out in the open and have become valuable crumbs that are showing me the best path to follow.
You’d think I’d know better.
The past few weeks, I’ve had the privilege of hosting eleven amazing women in my living room, teaching them the steps I used to unwind from a cluttered, overwhelmed life. Last week we talked about life balance – the ‘ebb & flow’ and the importance of the ebb.
And then yesterday happened.
My day began with spilling turkey broth all over the kitchen cabinets, inside my boot, soaking my leggings and all over the floor. A few hours later, I was making room in the fridge for said turkey broth, moved a can of sparkling fruit juice water, that happened to be opened and down it went, all over the fridge, my now bare foot and the floor.
I N T E N S E! That’s what the past few weeks have been for me. Not because I’ve been over-busy, I haven’t. It’s been intense because I’m learning new skills and venturing into a new way of doing business. It’s like being an explorer travelling into uncharted territory. Sometimes the scenery is breathtaking and other times it’s downright scary!
Joseph Campbell says “If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path. Your own path you make, with every step you take. That’s why it’s your path”.
Many years ago, a therapist told me, “you are the type of person that needs everything mapped out”. That was so true. I needed a plan. I needed to control my plan and to know exactly where I was going and how I was going to get there. I then exerted an immense amount of energy making sure I followed my map. I was the ultimate trekker. I saw the path ahead, I’m not veering off the path – don’t get in my way, I’m pushing forward no matter what!