Do you find yourself stuck in the same patterns again and again?
There you are again….
procrastinating on completing your projects…
Getting to the end of the day exhausted with NOTHING done on your To Do List
Or even worse,
The gig you wanted falling through
The person who was supposed to hook you up going AWOL
Opening another rejection letter or email
It can be so disheartening!
And I imagine, you may be thinking,
This will NEVER change. I will be STUCK in this pattern forever!
This can feel so discouraging and really take a toll on our inspiration, and our motivation.
You may be thinking,
There must be something wrong with me.
I’ll never make it.
I get it. I remember bawling my eyes out when I blew a callback for Sister Act on Broadway. I had wanted it SO bad, and at this point it was another in a looooong line of disappointments where at the final moment when I needed to deliver, I would choke. It was as if I couldn’t sing….I literally froze and when they went to test my range, all I heard in my head was,
“You can’t do this”
I was really believing I would always do this.
I was really believing I didn’t have what it takes to sing at that level.
And indeed, this belief kept me stuck.
Can you relate?
I would marvel at my friends who were booking their Broadway gigs, and just ask, from my absolute depths,
What am I missing?
What are they doing that I’m not?
And why the HECK can I not deliver when it matters most?
What is holding me back?
Have you ever asked yourself these questions?
I thought of you last weekend.
I was at a three day intensive up at Zen Mountain Monastery in the Catskills, the place where my whole Zen journey began six years ago, and where I was married last September.
The theme of the intensive?
As part of the daily schedule, we do what is called Care Taking, which is typically an hour to 90 minutes of taking care of the monastery and grounds, doing various chores like
All of these activities are done as a way of taking care of the space that is taking care of US. This is our giving back. What’s most important about this process is, we do it in silence. It becomes a meditation, so when we get distracted, we come back to the task at hand; back to what we are doing in the moment, and cultivating not only the single focus, but the appreciation for this very special and sacred place.
I was chosen to help out with Cemetery Duty and headed up the hill in the woods with five others, bringing buckets and pads for our knees.
Our care taking?
To preserve the moss.
I had never been to the Cemetery before, and was taken by the beautiful enormous altar, and the peaceful setting. There were stone pathways, gravestones, and lots of moss…..except the moss was covered.
My job was to pick up the sticks and the pine needles that had fallen and were choking off the moss. And there was a LOT…in fact the needles seemed to be everywhere. So, I got down on the ground, and began to gather the needles.
According to Basic Biology.net
“Mosses play a vital role in being among the first colonizers of disturbed sites. They stabilize the soil surface, thereby reducing erosion, while at the same time reducing the evaporation of water, making more available for succeeding plants.”
They come to disturbed sites, stabilize, and make space for new growth.
Stabilize and make space for growth.
In the face of my divorce, my whole body felt like a disturbed site. My heart was breaking deeper than I had ever experienced and I felt like my whole life was burning to the ground. In this space, I asked for help, and it came.
I learned tools around my mind.
I learned how to let go.
I learned tools around self compassion.
I was able to look at each “needle”, each “stick” that had fallen over time, over years of these pattern; these needles and sticks that were essentially my beliefs.
And what I came to realize was that underneath all I had labeled as “bad” about myself was actually something good. And it was innate. This goodness wasn’t affected by my heartbreak, by my divorce, by all the rejections I had endured in my career….it wasn’t affected by all the times I choked when I wanted so desperately to sing my best, or wanted to hear YES.
It was my moss.
And it needed to be preserved.
In fact, at that point, I was 37 and realized I had never placed my attention there.
Perhaps this was why I felt stuck….
And when I placed my attention on my moss, I had a radical shift in my career, a complete resurgence and ended up building a global fan base.
I was doing care taking…for the first time.
What are your sticks?
What are you needles?
What have you allowed to fall and cover up your beautiful moss?
What have you believed is real and will always be the same?
Is this helping you to go Full Time with your passion?
What if you are whole and complete?
What if the answers are actually all there, you just need help uncovering them?
There at your disturbed site, is actually an ecosystem waiting to bring you back to life in the face of disappointment and rejection. It’s there to stabilize you and create new growth.
You are actually far more powerful than you know.
Preserve your moss.