I recently purchased my first-ever laptop. In the beginning, it stayed parked on my desk in my office. After several days, I tentatively unplugged it and took it into the Breakfast Room so that I could do guided yoga enveloped in the beautiful morning light. Then, a few days after that, emboldened by my earlier wandering, I ventured into the dining room to do school work in the lovely, diffuse afternoon light. In this way, little by little, my laptop and I followed the sun’s journey around my small house. And now the final frontier…outdoors!!! I write this post sitting on my front porch on a beautiful day in early spring in Atlanta. It has taken me approximately six weeks to get here.
This tendency to be tentative (a kind description) is a core attribute of mine. I see it in my longstanding inability to dream about the future or to be the kind of person who can open her arms wide and shout out to the universe what she most wants. But if I want to continue on my journey of creating a meaningful and vibrant life, I have to push harder to hear and express my inner voice.
During a recent class for my Health Coach Certificate Program, we began exploring what might come next career-wise as the conclusion of the program approaches. In one fell swoop I was no longer safely in “student” mode and was suddenly thrust into “job-search” mode. Yikes! As soon as class was over, I found comfort in watching TV and eating mindlessly as I attempted to quiet my anxiety. But the difference this time around (compared to the countless other times through the years when I’ve comforted myself this way) was my ability to recognize my feelings and coping mechanisms as they were happening. Then I took a pass on passing judgement having learned in class that being self-critical rarely has the effect we want and often increases the very behaviors we don’t want!
Instead of passing judgement, I did something much more useful. I began to examine why I was feeling anxious about my next steps toward becoming a working health coach. It was then that I realized that I had immediately jumped to what kind of position I could get instead of taking the time to visualize what I really wanted. Once again, I had forgotten to dream.
So here’s my dream in regards to health coaching. I want to work with women who are stuck, like I was. For me, my upward spiral began with working out and climbing back into my body. Then came eating better and broadening my circle of friends. Next up was gathering the courage to leave my job of many years to figure out a new path. More recently, I’ve been learning about mindfulness and meditation and the importance of positivity. And I’ve only just begun. I can think of nothing better than to continue my “travels” while simultaneously witnessing and championing and assisting other women as they forge ahead with their own transformations.
Which brings me back to my newly acquired laptop. I’ve missed writing regularly these last three months. I think I was too busy absorbing new ideas and practicing unfamiliar skills; I wasn’t ready to process and share. But writing feels so important. So one more dream for now…to figure out a way to take this blog into the next chapter of my life.