I have just about finished listening to Brené Brown’s new book, “Braving the Wilderness“, and it has resonated so strongly with me from the very first chapter. Listening to her talk about courage, vulnerability and authenticity never tires for me, as she talks to parts of me that I thought were mine alone. The way she covers topics like boundaries, and how to love generously without judgement, inspire me to continue contributing wholeheartedly in the work that I do.
What it reminded me of is that it doesn’t matter if sometimes the lesson goes unlearned by the people in our lives, and that the most important learning is the one that we receive. I have oftentimes felt so alone in the world, wondering if it was only me who thought I was being misunderstood, feeling too much and questioning the status quo, but listening to this book (which I want to buy and make lots of notes in) I now know that there are other souls just like mine that are trying to make a difference to those around them. And sometimes that feels like swimming through syrup. Wondering if there is any value in putting little bits of my soul out into the ethos… And then I receive the lesson, not only through the words I am hearing spoken in the wider community, but from the lips of a client who is sitting in front of me, speaking exactly the same ideas and thoughts as I have been having listening to the book. And once again I am reminded that I am not alone. That the universe is scattered with individuals, families, groups, organisations and communities that are all braving the wilderness.
This I endeavour to do this with compassion and authenticity in the coaching work that I do…mainly in the field of (addiction) recovery. My greatest aim is to show up courageously in my personal and professional life, living in congruency with the universal truths of integrity, openness, patience, tolerance and forgiveness (to name but a few). In this principle-centred approach to life I feel that I can find peace and presence, something that I feel like I have been chasing my whole life. The funny thing is that I just need to stop and just be still, and allow the years of personal work to settle quietly around me, guiding me towards an inner stillness. So much easier said then done!
A couple of weeks ago I started reading “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” which I bought nineteen years ago, have carried to various homes around the world, and only just opened now. Maybe this was the perfect time for me to read it, as I realise that I have been living many of Stephen Covey’s teachings and practices for some time, and coupled with the more spiritual work of Eckhart Tolle, Simon Sinek’s “What is Your Why?“, changed and developed my “Mindset” thanks to Carol Dweck, and the phenomenal book “Switch” by Chip and Dan Heath, I have somehow developed a wonderfully holistic little map book for my adventure of life. I am not saying that I have all the answers, and sometimes when I dig into my head it is so full of clutter that I can’t find my spiritual road map. But when I make sure that my mind is empty of the noise, my soul is clear and my intentions are pure, I am guided by my own inner wisdom in exactly the right direction.
Of course, there are times when I argue with my intuitive GPS and because of that end up lost and confused in the quagmire of indecision and self-doubt. Learning to stop, take a deep breath and respond to situations has been a lifelong challenge for me. I am more of the kick-down-the-door-guns-blazing kinda girl, and to hell with the consequences, (which I always need to go back and deal with later when the dust has settled). But as my awareness and consciousness grow, I am able to experience genuine peace in my life, where I can simply sit on the sidelines and watch the drama unfold without becoming involved in it…of course those are the good days! But to be honest these are not as frequent as I would like them to be.
So, this year I am committing my energy towards learning to be more present and grounded in my personal centre. Where I am able to breathe through the anxiety and as Brené Brown puts it so powerfully, “lean into the joy“, rather than pushing myself into worst-case-scenario mode. I aspire to be wholehearted in my pursuit of adventure, however that may show itself this year, and go out into the wilderness with courage, vulnerability and a genuine commitment to support, love and empower those whose lives I may touch through my collaborations, partnerships, friendships and casual meetings. And for those in my little tribe of much loved individuals, I hope to enrich and sweeten their lives through my words, actions and unconditional love.
Now I think I am going to go and have an afternoon nap…it feels like a loving thing to do.