Here is a story that points out how beginning very small daily practices can create big change in only a little over a week. "Larry" came to work with me because he had suddenly lost his job, and felt overwhelmed, depressed, and lost. He wondered if he should start his own solopreneur business, and was looking for ideas and help. As I scanned his energy, though, I could easily discern that he had more going on than losing his work.
At the age of 42 he still lived with his mother, saying that he did so to help take care of her since she is slightly impaired. When I asked him how he saw that fitting for him, he said "I am waiting for her to die so that I will be free." He had remained in very low-paying work even though he has accomplished very high results in his work. His dream is to travel the world but he has never owned a passport. He is out of shape physically and feels ashamed about this. He admits that he "tries to restart himself but then begins to feel hopeless." And finally, he admits to an inner voice that is extremely self-sabotaging.
So, what to do? I see this person as someone who is bright, capable, funny, talented, and aching to find his path in life. He has very little money to spend on self-development right now, and no money to spend in creating a new business. As we talked, my strongest energetic sense was that he needs to address far more in his life than the loss of his job. He needs help to dream, and to take steps toward his dreams, too!
Here is our plan:
1) 15 minutes each morning in mediation or prayer, asking for insight and guidance about his perfect work.
2) Wait in the quiet of this time for the voice of the self-sabatoger to show up.
3) Write down every single thing the self-sabatoging voice says and thank it for every point it makes.
4) Walk 15 minutes each day.
5) Get pictures made and apply for a passport.
6) Check a book out of the library about the country he most would like to visit.
We plan to meet in a month, but a check after only 10 days revealed the following:
"My biggest change has been the self-sabotaging talk. I spend about 5 minutes in the morning writing down my limiting thoughts, then, when they pop up during the day, I gently say "nope, you had your chance to speak out this morning. You'll have to wait until tomorrow." It has made a world of difference. The first day I listened to my self-sabotaging thoughts, they were pretty tame. The second day, the thoughts were mean and harsh. Thursday and Friday, it was almost difficult getting those thoughts to come through. Today, they were a bunch of "what ifs" and actually had some good points. I write them down and say thank you for sharing. It is awesome." "I love the meditation time." "I'm parking my car farther away from the grocery store and walking 10,000 steps in a day." "I checked out a book on Africa and got passport pictures made. I can't believe how excited I am just to get a passport!"
These actions are small daily practices that take about half an hour a day. But look at the big changes, in only 10 days! It is so important to set our feet on the path of truth and freedom, which for each life is different. I can hardly wait to see what has happened when the entire month has gone by!