What stops us? Decision making for brave sailors
This Saturday, I'm closing my current office. Frankly, I am shocked and surprised I could make the decision to do this. My office is a sanctuary for me. It's my safe and happy place.
Four-ish years ago, I left an agency job to go into private practice. It was a gut wrenching decision. I increasingly had panic attacks and anxiety. The place I worked felt negative to me, and I had been seeing too many clients for too long. It no longer worked.
But my fears would constantly creep in. "Who are you to look for something better?" " You can't support yourself on your own!" "Hey, you get retirement and you have a window office." Arguments and excuses kept me stuck until an opportunity to design stained glass windows for a chapel appeared. I was so stressed and ill feeling, I thought "Well, if I design stained glass windows > someone will remember me when I'm gone."
So I made the decision to change my life. I took a sabbatical to work on the windows, and after a few months I began to look for office space. When I visited my current office, I loved it. There was a tree outside the window. The building owners worked in geology and had rocks in the building. My oldest son, who visited the space with me, was shocked when I said I would meditate on it and get back to them. "Mom, that's perfect for you," he proclaimed, "just get it." It was perfect, but I was afraid.
In a few days, I called back to get the space. "We're sorry," said the building owner. "Someone came and rented both offices since you left." I was heartbroken. It had only been a few days. How could I finally decide to take the leap and then hit a "No!" ???
I decided to trust. Within a few days, I got a call: "The person renting the rooms knows you and said they would let you take one of the offices. They will even let you have the one with the tree outside the window." And, so my office became the "room of my own" as Virginia Woolf once wrote.
Even though I work primarily as a therapist, my office has been more like a mini artist studio. It's small, but that's another word for cozy. It's been full of things I loved and good energy. I've been in transition the last few years - housesitting and living with friends while working out my dreams and my life. In this process, my office became like a tiny house to me too.
Earlier this month, I let my landlords know I was leaving. I cannot believe I could do this. It's like sailing out into deep water and losing sight of land. But the decision was based on extreme personal growth work and it was necessary.
Today, my friend Spiritual Director Megan Lyon, reminded me this process is "what stops us." "This" being the space between letting go of sure things and reaching for dreams. No wonder people stop reaching for their dreams. For me, what stops ME is the fear that it's not going to work out, that I'm crazy for following this compelling path to > who knows where and > who knows when.
Wanda Petunia came to me years ago - my imaginary friend. She is the creative expression of the Holy Spirit aka Inner Teacher to me. She's my highest self. She is what I hold onto when I leave the shore, time after time, and set out into the deep and deeper waters. She helps me be brave, the brave sailor I long to be.
Continually and constantly, I have been blessed. And since meeting Wanda Petunia and tracking all my blessings related to her... it's a journal full of serendipitous events! But... I have yet to reach the "Wanda and Amy on the Ellen Show!" Even with so many blessings, I have to push beyond "what stops us" and sail into deep and deeper waters. How did anyone ever find any new land??? I am amazed!
Thankfully, I believe we are meant to bring forth the unique gifts within us. From this belief, I am choosing decisions to create more of what I want. So I'll be office sharing with Megan here in Charleston and having a bigger office in Charlotte, NC. Which btw, what do you think happened there?
I looked at a space that was a step towards what I had been visioning. I had my reservations, aka fears, so I decided to contemplate it (again). A few days later, I made the decision. I would take it.
I messaged to say I wanted the space and the landlord called me. I had already sensed something was up. "Well, you didn't commit," he said, "So someone else is looking at it today." Argh! I was upset. I wasn't upset with him, I knew he needed to rent the space. I was upset that AGAIN I had decided to take a leap and hit a "No!"
Familiar upset stomach returns. I decided to just be and to trust. Maybe this wasn't the right step. I would wait. Within a few hours, he messaged me. The people didn't show up. The space was mine.
I am deeply grateful that there is grace built into my slow decision making process. I struggle with decisions - not all of them, but a lot of them. A lack of confidence, clarity and conviction creates a perfect storm of indecision for me. This storm creates very turbulent waters, and my dreams and Divine Love always keeps me afloat!
I choose to keep sailing beyond "what stops us" >>> following Wanda Petunia Love - self-love... the belief and the actions that I get to be more me, creatively expressing my dreams to help myself and others.
This week's Wanda Petunia self-care theme "I am decisive" is especially powerful for me. If you want to come out to the deep water with me, I will meet you here! I will help you find your bravery! I will cheer you on! Being decisive, especially when it comes to your soul work, is not for the faint of heart. That's why we need to be there for each other... connected, supportive, fellow sailors cheering each other on!!
Photo: Self-care and Self-love is deciding to accept the Love that you already are. When we follow our dreams, we must be supported by LOVE. Love will help us float and stay fully alive!! I choose to believe this! Will you believe this with me?? Make a decision!! YES! XOX