I am on a journey to live a life I love and to fill my life with the things that truly bring me joy... my dream job, loving relationships, financial abundance, a healthy mind and body, and a deep spiritual connection with all that is. I am living consciously to create a life filled with all the things I love.

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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Showing Up

Achieving our goals a lot of times depends on if we decide whether to show up or not. If your goal is to get fit, do you show up at the gym or a class when you say you will? I've been guilty of this one. I've scheduled "gym time" for myself at 6:30 in the morning on my calendar, but I have not showed up yet. The intention was there, but the follow-through was not. Instead of beating myself up about not making it to the gym and feeling guilty, maybe it's time to re-evaluate if this is the right path for me right now. How much of a priority is this among the giant list of other things I'm trying to get done? It's important, for sure, so maybe it's about setting more realistic expectations. Instead of trying to go in every day, maybe I'll start with one day a week for 20-30 minutes. This way, I'm more likely to show up that one time and then I can build up from there.

Aside from exercise, I am also talking about the opportunities that come into our lives. Sometimes it's work related... For example, there was a free conference that I had the opportunity to attend as an alumni of Integrative Nutrition. I debated for some time whether to go or not, not because I didn't want to, but because I would have to figure out a way to pump milk either while I was there or just go for a short duration. I wasn't sure if it would be worth the effort. Trusting that this event came into my life at the right time for a purpose, I ended up going for the morning sessions. I dutifully made sure I pumped right before I left, but obstacles came up that made my journey into the city more difficult. The train was under construction, so I had to take the bus. One more thing to figure out that would also cut down on my time in between pumping sessions. I trusted that what I needed to hear at the conference would be while I was there, so I went.

I wasn't sure how much I would get out of the conference, but boy was I happy I went! I heard the right messages that I needed to hear, I met a person that I could keep in touch with, heard an amazing talk by Deepak Chopra, and was inspired by my fellow alumni with all they are doing in their lives. The energy was palpable and I knew it was a good thing I came. Somehow, this event was going to propel me forward in my journey towards creating my own career.

The other opportunities that come into our lives can disguise themselves as being social in nature. I was invited to go meet a friend for drinks. It coincided with my baby's bedtime and since I was the only one that could put her to bed, I was reluctant to go. Instead of giving up, however, I decided to try and see if there was a way that my husband could put the baby to bed. For the next few days after the invite, I either nursed her and then he rocked her to sleep, or he tried giving her a bottle to see if he could put her down by himself. After a few days, it worked! And although she woke up sometimes as frequently as every hour after she went to sleep, he was able to rock her back to sleep! This freed me up and I was able to go out (minding my pumping schedule of course), and I was so glad that I did. I met new people and had conversations with my friend and others that really gave me new ideas, taught me some new things, inspired me, and supported me. It was what I needed at that time to get me back into the fashion scene and mingle with old classmates so that I wasn't in a mom world bubble.

What usually happens if you show up, is that one thing leads to another. I showed up, had some interesting conversations, someone needed some help looking for a job, so I offered to reach out to a contact I had to see if there were any openings. Although I initially did this to help someone else, this email I sent out ended up helping me more than anyone else! Through the friendly conversation, I was given some pretty good advice that I really needed to hear to help steer me and give me confidence to start making my own clothes. It planted a seed.

But, that wasn't the only thing that came out of that night. My friend invited me to a session she was having with her old professor to learn some patternmaking techniques and invited me along. I could have just stayed at home, but instead, I decided to hire a nanny for that day and make it there. It was rare opportunity for me to meet a teacher that I hadn't met while I was at school and to learn (or re-fresh my memory) of something that was good for me to know. I knew the skill would also come in handy. The private session was not just about patternmaking, but there were discussions about how to work while being a mom, about how the fashion industry, and other conversations that gave me some good insight. Then this session led to a follow-up session and now the door is open for me to reach out to this professor for help with any patternmaking questions I have.

But there were other things I was able to get out of these sessions too... some recommendations for some amazing videos to watch and a book to buy that would help me experiment with different techniques. Also, a recommendation on a bookstore to visit. So, there was my next step... visit that bookstore to look for that book. I then showed up at the bookstore 2 days later (I wrapped it around the second session and hired the nanny for a half day too), and started browsing the shelves. I intended to buy that book (which happened to be out of stock there), but ended up finding some incredible Japanese magazines that I could use as inspiration, and Eco-Fashion book that was exactly what I was looking for and would save me a ton of research time, and I also picked up a random innovative origami book that really called out to me for some reason. And of course I couldn't help myself but to enjoy some decaf coffee and try a Japanese pastry.

And then, that's not the end of the story. It keeps going on and on. Each thing leads to the next. I read something in my email that triggers another action and some more learning, and I see something that sparks another idea, and I watch something on TV that gives me some more insight, and on and on it goes. Each of these tiny steps leads you step by step to the bigger picture and to your ultimate goal if you decide to just show up. Things just unfold. Step by step, if you're paying attention. Trust that you are at the right place at the right time, doing the right thing. It may not all make sense right now, but it does come together. I'm starting to see everything come together and it's pretty amazing. Everything that seemed so unrelated is not converging into something that is really an amazing overall concept. And I'm finally beginning to see clearly through the fog. What lies ahead is a magical adventure in which we are guided to the next step, and all we need to decide and do is to show up.

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