No one knew it was coming. Life was going along at its normal pace. We were all doing our life, our work, our relationships and then, out of nowhere, came 9/11. We “cocooned.” We were afraid to go out, especially to an airport, any tall building or military base. We hunkered down and thought WWIII might be at hand.
And we lost a lot during that time. I for one had to close the business I built in Atlanta, my dental practice management education center. Just a little over two years old; just making a profit. I put blood, sweat and tears into that dream of mine. And in an instant; it was gone.
Suffering came. Long dark night of the soul. Rug pulled out from under us. Many phrases speak to the trauma that event brought to our lives. And yet, we survived and even thrived.
I learned a valuable lesson in the 9/11 aftermath. I boohooed for days. I wallowed in self-pity and rage at the upending of my dream. And then, I asked a friend to lunch. A dear friend with a great listening ear and whose spiritual connection ran deep. Mine was lost. Yes, I was mad at God, too.
As we sat down, the waiter greeted us and then wrote his name on the butcher paper covering the table. He left a few crayons. While the kitchen prepared our meal, I blubbered and shared my pity story with my friend. He listened, asked a few questions and then he pondered before speaking. He picked up a crayon and wrote a life changing question. “Linda, now, what are you going to gain?”
Well (with attitude!), I first thought – nothing. I have lost. Then, one deep breath later, I burst into tears and blubbered, “Time with my family, especially Ted.”
This crossroads and a friend’s question took the tragedy of 9/11 and allowed me to pivot it into an opportunity that I could not see in my personal pity party. Thank goodness for my friend.
At this pandemic pause crossroads, I want to reach through these words to be your friend and ask several questions:
Are you using your God given gifts in the career, job you are in or will go back to?
Are you living where you soul is nourished and fed?
Are you chasing, grasping at a dream that needs a Re-Boot?
Are you truly happy inside or are you putting on a happy face, so you don’t rock the proverbial boat?
What is your life’s vision, calling, dharma, or purpose? If you aren’t clear on this one, you will be following someone else’s vision. Or, you will be rocking along like a tumble weed and ending up somewhere you were not planning to be in a few years.
What are you missing that it’s time to regain? What dream or desire have you denied in the face of responsibility, duty or being “asleep at the wheel” going through the motions of life?
Which spinning plate in your life needs to drop, to be let go?
Since you are already sequestered, this is a beautiful time to give yourself a personal soul-searching retreat. Yes, you may be home schooling children, you may be working from home, you may be furloughed or laid off. You may not have the same job and pay to go back to. All can be true for right now. But, you also have a great time to re-invent, re-boot, re-imagine the life you want to go back into.
This phrase runs through my mind these days, “What’s it all about, Alfie?” Who knows? I only know this. I am spending my COVID-19 sequester in a personal soul-searching retreat buried in books and journaling. Now, over a month into this, who knows the outcome. But, for me much like 9/11. I am making a personal commitment to pivot, reframe my vision and my business.
After 9/11, I resized my business and developed a licensing program to mentor other “want-to-be” dental consultants. Yes, I lost money as I closed my dream education center. My coach and business advisors helped me create a new model for my business with less stress, less time away from home AND more profits. Through that reframe and then my re-boot, I gained the wisdom and faith to know I will make it through this one, too.
To continue as that friend who wants to assist you during this pandemic pause, I am creating e-book modules, Pandemic Pause Crossroads: Guide for Your Life Path Pivot, to nudge you along during your own soul-searching retreat. I will share from my heart, my learning, my wisdom, and my belief that every person deserves to delve into that place inside where their personal passion, vision, dharma lives and “make it be so.” And there is no gimmick, it will all be free to you as my gift.
While I am creating each module, you can enjoy my new journaling e-book, Easy Journaling: 5 Steps in 5 Minutes. Click here www.lifepathbydesign.net to get yours. Or order the print version on Amazon.com
Easy Journaling Amazon link https://amzn.to/354QD9l
And please pass this along to any friends or family who may want to Pivot, Re-vision, Re-examine, Re-Boot their own life path with a virtual soul-searching retreat.