Imagine it’s Saturday morning 5.45 am at the airport and somebody runs to the line of check-in you are queuing, totally in stress asking out of the blue: “Until when do we need to be checked in?” Now I was looking at the men, about mid thirties, Mediterranean and so early already totally stressed and said: “if you board like us for London its about 45 min before the flight hence you have another 30 minutes” “Ush” was his response and he started talking to me about how late he worked the day before, that the mobile checking was not working …and so on and so on… Me not being a morning person but a good citizen was listening and gave him comfort by doing so. Our paths separate for security but we met again at the gate with a warm smile. “You made it” I said and he was happy smiling back and again started to talk: “I cannot go further in my life like that, it’s insane, I work hard and I have plans all the time and even on the week-end I do not relax but do things.”
Wow interesting I thought and I declared that he is talking to a professional coach and that I might see things a bit differently. He said his is waking up at night thinking of the entire tasks he has to do all day long and what he might misses. And that this is driving him nuts. But that he cannot change anything about it. There we are I thought, so I asked “Who thinks all those thoughts?” – “Hmm…I guess it’s me?” – “And who are you, who is thinking that?” “Oh, I’m an achiever!” he returned in a split second.
“Great” I said, “then you brain is exactly doing what you want it to do, to achieve things, to plans to be able to achieve. You are well on track with that – congratulations. Good new is, that if you want to change a few things, then plan them – you will achieve it as you are an achiever. For a start I just want to share with you that listening to a good piece of music, sitting and surrender while having a cup of tea is doing something as well!.” He looked puzzled, not really knowing what to say. But after a moment he asked: “So what are you doing so early on the plane on Saturday?” “Oh, I fly to Santa Fe, my second home base as I just open an affiliate there. Not so easy to work on 2 continents but that’s what I want to do”. ”Oh he said, “as long as it keeps you busy its will be ok, not”…”No” I answered, “as long as it keeps me happy it is OK.”
There was silence after that and I could see he was thinking: busy vs. happy. I’m sure he was not the only achiever on that plane as other passengers witnessed quite interested our conversation. While the plane took off, I thought about how my own life changed from being an achiever years back to now perusing happiness.
I was supposed to be in Paris today and tomorrow. I planned to visit the garden of Versailles and meet a friend after more then 6 year. Tomorrow an all day client meeting on change management. Things change, the plan is not getting realized and other elements find room to manifest.
Over the last few days sharing of sadness, the coping with unexpected, reasoning and precautions are key topics. A friend of mine just returned from Auschwitz and she is missing words to explain what she experienced. Sometimes our mind, our heart and our soul are missing words, feelings, strategies or believes to make senses of what happens around us.
In those moments I retrieve myself into nature. Endless forms of creativity and surviving strategies; endless cycles of birth & death and yet a certainty that all is coming together – that everything has its reason even if I do not understand it at the moment it happens. Nature gives me trust and comforts me, that we as human beings have the strength to stay connected to us and others with compassion & wisdom, allowing us together to manifest step by step the world we want to live in.
The path to purpose is not always clear and easy. It needs inputs as the one above from Project Happiness (http://www.projecthappiness.org), self-reflection and feedback from people you trust.
I knew very early in my life (age 10) that I want to be a pharmacist. Now more than 30 years later I’m a change agent & coach: from the inner calls’ perspective it’s the same as it serves the same purpose: human being’s wellbeing, now with focus on the business life.
What can be summarized in those 4 lines involved lots of sweat, happiness and struggle. In high school I wanted to stop and get into truffle production (now a hobby of mine). During university I felt I never get the biochemistry of the human. I studied and studied and at the end I even was considering a PhD in Biopharmacology because I was so enthusiastic about it. But instead I went into a retail pharmacy and felt constrained by the regulations. I started at the pharmaceutical industry and got caught by marketing & sales. What a great adventure! I thrived and I was in the field of being paid for what I’m good in and what I love. Until one day in 2003, I did not love it anymore. I felt empty from within and the question ‘Why do I do what I do’ surfaced. Not an easy one to answer and to reflect what it’s based upon, as I was very successful in what I did at that time. Being me, I was quite drastic in my take on finding the answers to the question why: I left my job and took a time-out from work to find answers.
Ever since 2004 I’m on my path to purpose. I started my coaching & training formation, kicked-off my first company, connected with my healing skills and intuition, traveled the world and explored new fields of work. If I would have had the above graph as guide, things might have developed even faster. But now we are in Oct 2015 and since several years I work in my own business enabling insights and facilitate change for individuals and organizations. I truly love what I do as it serves the bigger purpose of peoples being happy@work and I’m good in what I do. The rest follows along those lines. Is that the end of my path to follow the inner call? No, I do not think so, but I take it step by step.
What is your path? What is different then years back and equally the same? Let me know, I’m curious to get to hear your story.
If I had a wish, a wish for anyone close to my heart and those I do not know yet, everyone living in our world then it would be: “Stay happy and connected.” Connected to each other, connected to yourself and by doing that you actually stay happy.
A year full of news, events and new connections & insights finds it’s end. A year which showed me that limitations and new horizons are so close to each other that I really do not know if there is a difference in between them. People very close to me lost important people in their lives or they received the gift of new live. In each of those moments I felt my heart flowing. Flowing towards the other persons heart to share joy or grief, to live compassion and lighten up the emotions. I felt the joy and the responsibility of the connection and I followed each call with no hesitation as my heart already was there when my mind decided to go.
As humans we have the joy of having both, a heart and a mind – latter I admire really much. This year was my year of the heart over mind experiences and my world is so much richer now staying connected.
For everyone of you, who wants some tips and tricks for the mind to stay connected and happy, please find here a website http://www.actionforhappiness.org and scroll down and find under resources a pdf Booklet
This summer I took nearly 10 weeks time off business and was traveling around in the South West of the US. It was a great time and I enjoyed the difference landscapes, the different cultures in the states and meeting lots of new people from all over the world. I really felt like a free spirit, no (or better nearly no) obligations, no rules to follow and lots, lots of time to think & to be.
Now back home I go through the notes I made and a quote / question that I wrote down jump to my face: do you have the discipline of a free spirit?
Hmm, good questions I need to admit: so is this an habit of mine – not just while being aboard, while having time off, but also back home, back to the work place, back with the routine?
I need to admit: my daily routine is very fast in getting myself back to where I was before I left. But now I have my personal reminder with a graffiti from Las Vegas as background.
So lets all of us cultivate our free spirits! Kathrin
Today I sent an SMS to a friend in Russia giving some news about work and business. She wrote back that she enjoys work there and despite she has still many things to learn – she tries to add value where she can.
A statement that touched my heart. And reflecting about my last 2 months, during which I was physically restricted due to an accident (and frustrated because elf the limitations) – I can say, I tried the same. Adding value despite not being at the top of health, despite not being able to artistically use available resources, despite recognizing that there are limitations – I added value whenever I could.
When we act from the position of wanting to add value, from the position of doing our best, then we allow ourselves to tap into our resources & talents available and with that allow all others to do the same. In my trainings I talk about the JFK cocktail in reference to Dorothy Sarnoff a Pioneer of the Self-Help Movement. This cocktail consists of 5 believe sentences essential to a good state management. A great tool to be used every day because if you can hold this cocktail state – you’re in the right mood to add value where needed and wanted. – Just try it out!