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I learned how to meditate over 15 years ago. I’ve meditated (TM) twice a day every day since then with very few exceptions. I still don’t think I’m doing it right. I share this because, although this is my 100th blog post, I don’t think I’m doing it right either.
My fabulous blog instructor, Lena West, explicitly told me that to be a good blogger you have to read other people’s blogs, comment on and trackback to them, quote them and stay engaged with influencers. I haven’t done that.
But, I’ve loved every minute of my blogging experience. It’s given me a brand new perspective on my business and what I want to bring to my clients and colleagues. I feel like I’m walking around with new lenses on, seeing small business in a completely new light. I can’t wait to write a piece on logo envy, another on how to deal with making plans in the Northeast during winter and yet another on throwing parties as a way to promote your business. I got the coolest invitation from my clients at 341 Studios. (More on that later this week.)
I’ve loved sharing my perspective with my readers. I’ve gotten positive feedback from neighbors here in Norwalk and from as far away as Slovenia. (Hi Darja!) It seems that whenever I begin to launch into a story–like my husband backing into the garage door–my audience has already read about it on my blog.
I have the joy of feeling seen and heard by hundreds. I believe that’s what we human beings crave. I do anyway. It’s a huge reward and bi-product of blogging. I surely didn’t anticipate that effect.
So, after writing my 100th blog, I still don’t think I’m doing it right. But like the transcendental meditation I’ve practiced for all these years, whatever it is I am doing, it’s working for me.
I was walking at Compo Beach (Westport) with a new friend who recently left her place of work. She was cataloging her job search activities–informational interviews, lunches with colleagues, etc. “But what I would really like is to spend two weeks on the beach,” she said with a hearty laugh.
I believe the laugh came as a trained defense mechanism for all those practical colleagues who would dismiss the thought out of hand. “You can’t possibly do that and still claim to be a sane, responsible and prudent citizen,” I imagined they’d think, say or project.
But she was walking with me–a coach and proponent of following one’s bliss. “Do it!” I said.
I proceeded to tell her how refreshed and renewed I was having so recently spent a week by myself. I’d been responsible to no one in a beautiful, serene environment. Everything looked different and clearer when I returned.
The next day I attended an excellent pilot program put on by a client of mine and held at St. Birgitta’s Vikingsborg in Darien–two towns away from Westport. It is located on the Long Island Sound and is as serene a place as you could wish. Their rates are posted: $110 per day including three meals. I recommended it to my friend and hope she treats herself to at least a week.
By the time this gets posted I’ll have been at The Golden Door in Escondido, CA for the first of my seven day stay. I know I’ll have lots to report about it when I return, but looking forward to it is almost as satisfying.
For years extreme self-care has been a high priority in my life. As a woman and business owner I am constantly using my energy to create, relate, motivate and deliver. There’s also the life force I use to nurture my family, friends, clients, prospects and vendors. That’s a lot of good juju (as my friend L.A. Reding would say) going out. I know I need to replenish that on a regular basis.
I meditate twice daily, exercise almost daily, eat well and have an active spiritual life and community. I surround myself with positive people–loving friends and family.
My intention in spending a week at the Golden Door is Inner Focus as their Welcome Package so eloquently puts it. I want complete quiet away from my office and home, the phone, email, noise and distractions. I have no idea what will come out of this empty space. I do know that nature abhors a vacuum. I’m ready to receive new insights, ideas and inspiration from that place within that rarely has space to get heard.
Since one of my own company’s offerings is a retreat for women at a luxury spa, I’m modeling the behavior for future clients. Nice to have this “assignment” as homework.
One assignment I had during my coaching certification program was to sit for one hour and do nothing. I chose to bring my collapsible chair to Compo Beach for my hour of nothingness. It was chilly, so I had a blanket wrapped over my body. The tide was low and coming in.
Within a few minutes of disorientation–how does one do nothing?–I began to observe what was going on in the nothingness of sitting. I started watching the gulls. One would swoop down, pick up a clam shell in its beak, fly up and drop it to the ground. When it broke open, the bird would swallow the contents–mission accomplished.
I noticed that the activity would be repeated two or three times if the shell wasn’t immediately compliant. The bird simply swooped down again, retrieved the same shell, flew up and dropped it again. After a couple of tries without success, it moved on to another shell. It was a force of nature. No judgment. Just…NEXT.