I ran into Adam the other day after my co-op shop. I passed him eating lunch at a picnic table on my way to the bike rack, and he asked if I had time to hear a story. I did!
He wanted to tell me about the most amazing job offer he recently got. This job represents one of those gorgeous marriages of various facets of who he is, including the job description that suits his talents and experience (including mentoring) and aligns with key things he wants from his work (like getting to play the role of mentor to a population he cares about), plus a connection (and travel opportunities!) to a foreign country he loves. He turned it down.
He was excited because the decision in the past would have entailed agony and torture. On paper, it was so clearly a great job and a fantastic choice. But there were other factors in his personal life and the whole of his life balance that made it not such a great idea.
How did he stay out of being ripped apart by these contradictory realities? He applied what he and I have talked about together—got out of his mind and into his body. He felt into the decision instead of thinking it through and figuring it out. In other words, he trusted himself—his own knowing as felt in his own body.
It wasn’t hard. It was as simple as noticing that when he considered taking the job, he felt contracted and conflicted. He felt heavy. He felt off. When he thought about turning down the job, he felt relief. He felt like himself. He felt it was all going to be okay. And that was that.
If your impulse now is to say, “But what about …?” “But didn’t he …?” all you’re doing is projecting on Adam's story what you do inside your own head. Notice that this doesn’t feel good, and it doesn’t yield clarity. It just keeps tugging mercilessly at that place inside that feels torn. It panders to the part of you that wants to white-knuckle it through life and let go of nothing lest you lose everything.
Part of my everyday magic curriculum is about minding your feeling states on an ongoing basis (and these register in the body) to support you to keep coming back to things you want to focus on, things you actually choose to give your focus to—like anything that stirs awe, wonder, curiosity, joy, and crazy-wow feelings about how amazing this life is here on earth; or like any way the universe is actively responding to your clear intentions and the questions you’re living into. Those responses are part of your guidance system, as are the marvelous and entirely trustworthy sensations in your body that let you know whether you’re right on-track or heading off-course.
Adam did 4 coaching sessions with me and read my book, and just about every time he sees me, he reminds me how much he’s gotten from that pairing. (This time he politely asked me if I liked being stopped to get these stories. (Uh, yeah.)
I told Adam I especially liked it this time because, as it happens, I’d recently asked for a sign that I was still on-course with this coaching work, and not only had I gotten a sign that very day that brought tears and set off a tiny bout of (no, I wouldn’t say maniacal) laughter, I’d since been getting more little and large signs on a daily basis, sometimes several a day, for a string of days. That day, it was his turn to bring the message and, truly, what a sweet mirror to look into.
Love & blessings, Jaya