(vulnerability alert) Facing a hard truth about myself

It’s been nearly 3 months since I sent you my last newsletter…which is record-breaking because for many, many years I’ve faithfully shared an article and content every single week.

I’m a big believer in being persistent and consistent, and teach this to my clients all the time. For example – if you’re going to have a newsletter, the way to make it most effective is to send it out regularly. It’s a rule I have lived by.

So why have you not really heard from me since July?

Well, two monumental things happened simultaneously.

The first is that mid-Summer I became TIRED. I’m not talking a little tired; I’m talking the kind of tired that has you want to stop everything, stay in your PJs for a month, and watch bad TV.

The months leading up to this realization had been pretty hectic for me. I had been travelling back home to see my parents a lot, caring for my two young children, filling 4 separate programs, hosting 3 retreats, tending to my own self-care…and that’s all just the tip of the iceberg.

I honestly thought I was managing all of it really well – business, family and self – until I was in a yoga class one day and seemingly out of nowhere got a severe case of Vertigo that brought me to the ER and then left me immobile for the better part of a week.

That experience was really humbling for me.

For many years now, I’ve been preaching that the way to true happiness, success and well-being is by slowing down, doing less, creating space and learning how to BE.

I had learned this for myself the hard way 10 years ago – when I was truly overworking (think:70+ hours a week), and after getting sick from it, I finally saw that the overwork was a way of compensating for the deep, deep fear that I wasn’t good enough.

Somewhere this last Spring, I briefly lost that lesson.

I slipped back into old patterns that had me DO-ing way more than I was BE-ing. I was rushing from plan to plan and meeting to meeting without much pause or rest in between.

And I was doing all of this to compensate again for a feeling of not-enoughness, as well as to distract myself from truly enJOYing all that I had created.

And while my body would have continued to plug along after the Vertigo, thank goodness I remembered the old lessons, and knew deep down inside that it was time to slow down and make space.

As I was beginning to fully accept that I truly needed space, another thing became incredibly clear to me: I could see how much I had disconnected from my deepest desires and deepest “whys” around my business, and instead had been chasing success.

I am blessed that over the years I’ve been able to build a thriving business and achieve so many of my professional goals and dreams. But in a way, my success has been a trap for me. I’ve gotten caught in the “need” to be successful. No matter what I achieved, it was hard to feel satisfied with what I created, because it never felt like enough. I could see how I was constantly needing more – more business, more income, more visibility….in other words, more security and more validation.

Success had momentarily lost its truest meaning around helping to change the world, and had taken on the dangerous role of feeding my ego and quelling my fears.

When I saw this, I knew I had to stop.

I understood that the longer I would chase after success, the emptier I would feel (no many how many new clients would come through the door).

So in early August, I committed to suspending the newsletter until I was re-grounded.

And I also committed to take all marketing off of my calendar until I had a vision and plan for my business that wasn’t about chasing or striving for success, but rather a vision and plan that was 100% fully aligned with me, my pace, my desires, and the impact that I know I’m meant to make in the world.

Let me tell you – this wasn’t an easy decision to make. It meant putting off any major new income generation, any visibility building, and platform building until I got clear. And I didn’t know when the clarity would come.

But I did know that I needed space, and that I needed to break pattern.

And I also knew that I needed to trust.

To trust that my intuition was right when it was telling me not to continue with the current plan (even though it was the tried and true income generation plan).

To trust that by creating space more opportunities would present themselves.

To trust that I didn’t need any further success in order to be validated or of value. I am valuable because I exist.

To trust that whatever I would find in the BE-ing would be golden and the exact medicine I needed.

The space and the stopping was so needed.

I’ve been able to relax and rejuvenate. (And I’m still working on that).

I’ve been able to enjoy myself and my family, and to enjoy my commitments and responsibilities to my clients even more because I’ve had open-ness and time.

I’ve been able to settle in deeply to what I truly want next for myself and for my work.

I’ve been able to see and create a bigger vision – one that isn’t about chasing success, but instead about living my life from a place of peace and deep service.

I’ll be sharing the bigger vision with you with you very soon, and it includes lots of new opportunities that I can’t wait to tell you about.

But in the meantime, know this –

You are enough. No matter how much you’ve accomplished, no matter how big or small your business is, no matter how many clients you have….you are enough.

Your birth-rite isn’t to be successful because success isn’t really what it’s all about.

Your birth-rite is to be at peace, to find happiness and well-being, to find deep satisfaction in your work, and to serve in the exact and unique ways that only you are meant to serve.

It doesn’t have to look any particular way to be valuable and to be meaningful for you.

Break pattern when you’ve gotten off course, and always make it top priority to honor your self, your heart and your rhythm above all else.

With love,

Joanna

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