The Robin in the Rain

As I’m building my coaching business I’m still working another job. My manager recently took another job.

I fully support her moving on. It was absolutely necessary for her. AND that first week without her was so incredibly overwhelming for me. Not because she hadn’t trained me well, but because others are coming to me thinking I have the breadth and depth of her knowledge. BUT I DON’T.

Being interrupted in the middle of my tasks and being asked questions that I have no answers for triggered something in my nervous system the first week after she left. I spent the entire week stopping and taking deep breaths and then coaching myself along with a few tears.

The end of that first week it all seemed too much when I walked into my office that morning. All I wanted to do was cry, but I started my first task of the morning anyway.

And then it started raining. When I heard the rain, I glanced out my window and somehow, even with my computer glasses on (aka everything in the distance is all blurred,) I saw a robin hopping around in the grass.

In the pouring rain.

“Look at the birds of the air…..”

All I could think was “I want to be like that bird.” Doing what he needed to do in that moment – hunting for worms. Not caring at all that the rain was pouring on him. He was perfectly at peace. And then a couple more robins joined her. See the video above.

Working to remain present and live FROM a place of inner peace is a constant practice. Especially living in this busy and noisy world that never seems to be quiet or slow down.

It takes listening to my body. It takes capturing my thoughts before they trigger negative emotions.

Sometimes it takes setting boundaries. Sometimes it takes saying no. Sometimes it takes letting go of activities (maybe even people) that drain our energy or bring us down.

It’s slow and holy work. But a slow and holy work that leads to a calm spirit that knows our true worth & inner peace.

Now to practice being present enough and not resisting what is so that peace becomes second nature.

What Are You Hoping For & What’s Holding You Back?

I don’t like setting goals. And heaven forbid I set a resolution. It’s going to last all of maybe 3 hours.

But there are dreams and pursuits I’m hoping for and working towards. I just don’t want the pressure of “goals.” It paralyzes me.

One thing that I have been asking myself this past year is what is holding me back from those dreams and pursuits?

In working with my own coach I’ve found that what holds me back is two fold. It’s almost always my mindset & the limiting beliefs I have about myself and various things. And these limiting beliefs are almost always rooted in my core fear. (I talked about fear some here last year.)

Understanding our core fear and how it impacts what we do can help us understand what is holding us back from those things we are hoping for and dreaming of doing.

My core fear is not being good enough. In every situation, if I stop and think about what is holding me back or causing me to react in a certain way, I can peel back the layers and find that my core fear is almost always at the root.

And you want to know what happens when you can bring your core fear to light? It starts to lose its power. It might not happen overnight. It’s slow and holy work. But little by little it starts to lose its power.

If you want to learn more about how your core fears and motivations are holding you back I would love to help you.

My coaching process can help you find clarity on how you are uniquely created and what you were created to do.

It’s not as hard as you think. Don’t wait to discover the most important things about you and how they can help you discover your purpose.

It’s too costly to wander through life wondering what gets in your way of the things you want to do.

I love helping people discover how amazing they are and the gifts and strengths they were created with to make the world a better place and I would love to help you!

My Top Books for Learning How to Cultivate Peace & Calm in Your Life

I grew up hearing and reading the scriptures that said “do not fear” and “cast all your cares” and “ “my peace I bring to you,” but I don’t ever remember hearing HOW to find that peace. “Read your bible more” they said. “Pray more” they said.

Honestly, though? Those activities never brought me peace. I was doing all the things a good “Christian” is supposed to do, but I still had repeating thoughts that kept me worried and anxious. I still lived in fear of doing something wrong.

The Enneagram helped me understand myself and WHY I do what I do and WHY those thoughts kept me worried I wasn’t good enough. Yet I still needed to know HOW to find that peace that passes all understanding. That’s when I started learning about mindfulness and practices that would help me become my “true self” in Enneagram language. Becoming our true selves brings us closer to Christ and brings more peace.

Unfortunately, I had been taught to believe what I “did” would bring more peace. It was when I started reading more contemplative authors I started to understand that finding that peace that Christ brings had nothing to do with checking off a list of “tasks” in order to be a “good” Christian.

When I started learning to be present in the moment and learning to let go of those repetitive thought patterns or thoughts that didn’t bring me joy and peace is when I learned what Christ meant when he says he brings peace. Thoughts that kept me stuck in worry and fear of not being good enough. Thoughts that kept me stuck in the past and anxious about the future. Those thoughts were stealing my peace. While some preachers will have an occasional sermon on the portion of Matthew that talks about the birds of the air and lilies of the field not being anxious they never really tell you HOW to live that way.

When I began learning about mindfulness and other practices that showed me how to live in the present moment, it changed everything. I’m no where near a master at it and there are days where I still struggle, but becoming aware of not only WHY I do what I do through the Enneagram, and also learning practices I can put in place that help me become conscious and aware of my thoughts throughout the day is bringing true transformation.

Below is a list of my top books that have spoken to me about these practices and learning to be more present in the now. As I’ve filtered the words from these books through the words of Christ I have learned how to be at peace even when life feels anything but peaceful.

*Links below contain affiliate links.

A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle

The Naked Now by Richard Rohr

Letting Go by Dr. David R. Hawkins

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

Sacred Pathways by Gary Thomas

Invitation to Solitude and Silence by Ruth Haley Barton

Sacred Rhythms by Ruth Haley Barton

Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer

Living Untethered by Michael A. Singer

Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda

Are you constantly thinking about what you should have done? Or could have done? Or would have done if x,y, or z had happened?

Are you often consumed with thoughts of what you might have done wrong? Or maybe what you said in that conversation was wrong or what if the other person took it the wrong way?

Do you get stuck in the trap of “If Only?”

What if you could learn to be okay with what is? Situations & conversations happen. Choices we made. Actions we took. We can’t go back & change them. We can’t undo something that happened in the past. The past is no more.

Yet the past (and what could happen in the future) can keep us stuck.  I know. That used to be me. The constant non-stop voice in my head telling me what I should have done instead of what I did.

Shoulda, woulda, coulda.

It’s a viscous cycle to keep us from reaching our highest potential. It keeps us from living with a purpose and intention for each day. It keeps us from seeing those right in front of use who need our compassion and empathy. It keeps us from living as God created us to truly live.

We can learn to take control of those thoughts that keep repeating in our head. We can talk back  to those thoughts with grace and kindness. We can acknowledge them & then gently dismiss them. We can acknowledge them with compassion and thank them for how they are trying to help us.

When we name them, understand why they are there, acknowledge how they are trying to help us, and give ourselves compassion, those thoughts and limiting beliefs begin to lose their power. This is “taking every thought captive” and living fully present in the here and now. This is how we begin to rewire the pathways those limiting beliefs have created in our brains.

This is how we live truly free.

If this is you, it would be my privilege to help you learn more about why those thoughts get stuck on repeat. Life coaching & the Enneagram can help you understand more about the core fears and parts of our personality that cause those ruminating thoughts & how to overcome them moving forward. Breaking those ruminating thought patterns can happen. You are not just stuck with them.

If you’re ready to take control of those coulda, woulda, shoulda thoughts, and explore how coaching can help, click here to set up discovery call. I would love to see you thrive with purpose & peace.

Do You Feel Seen?

I read an article recently about Van Gogh. The article talked about how two years before his death he was committed to an asylum and no one considered his art worth anything. It goes on to talk about how humans are herd animals. If the group said Van Gogh’s art was worthless then it was worthless. They totally missed the genius in front of them.

Before turning to art Can Gogh was a missionary who gave everything away to the poor which caused him to be dismissed by the church because of his too literal approach to Christianity. More thoughts on that at another time.

During the last few years of his life  he produced an astounding 2100 pieces of art. Starry Night and Cafe Terrace at Night are just two of his works that are considered priceless today. One estimate I found said Starry Night is worth $100 million.

Yet he died penniless. A tortured artist who had been committed to an asylum if the legends are correct.

His brilliance wasn’t seen. He wasn’t seen. He never felt seen.

My question for you, friend, is do you feel seen? Do you feel that your gifts and strengths and passions are seen and valued in your job, family, or church?

I think we could all raise our hands couldn’t we? This can be especially hard if you’re in a season of in between. In a liminal space. Maybe your bosses just want you to produce or get the tasks done without looking deeper to find out your strengths or insights. You may feel a bit out of harmony with yourself because your gifts and strengths aren’t being used like they could. Your spirit just feels out of true. I get it. I’m right there with you.

The article I read went on to say we should not surprised by this and we should take inspiration from it. People miss things. They miss what’s right in front of them. Instead of being hard on ourselves we have a bit thicker skin and be more confident in ourselves.

I agree with this at least to a point. Yes, be confident in ourselves but what if we decided to be intentional about seeing the gifts and strengths other bring to the table? What if we made others feel seen?

I hope that others value you not only for your gifts and strengths but also just because you are simply you and you have immeasurable worth and value.  I hope you feel seen.

If you aren’t sure what strengths and gifts you bring to the world around you, I would love to help you. Click here to schedule a discovery call about how Enneagram and life coaching can help you. Helping people understand themselves through the Enneagram and their strengths and gifts brings me so much joy. I would love to help you reach your highest potential with purpose and peace.