Go to Your Destiny

When I was younger I relished change. A move cross-country was contemplated and accomplished at a drop of the hat. Advance planning? Job in place? Housing arranged? Why take the fun out of the adventure.

After I graduated from the University of Michigan and decided I wanted to fulfill my dream of living in New York and working on Wall Street, I packed my peacock blue Hartman luggage, booked a room at the YMCA on Lexington Ave. and flew to my destiny. When I arrived that evening, I had $300 in my pocket, I was wearing white linen pants, a gold silk shirt, and with one phone call to a friend who was attending graduate school at Columbia, I was on the next subway to 112th Street and Broadway...home of Columbia University campus and Harlem. That evening I spent hours drinking vermouth soaked-gin martinis and listening as my friend gathered the courage to spill the beans that he was gay, a revelation perhaps only to himself, as those of us who were his friends had suspected for years and didn't think it made a whit of difference. The upside for me: he was moving out of his apartment and in with his boyfriend...which meant that he had a room to sublet. I never spent the night at the Y, after crashing at his place that night, I went back downtown the next morning and retrieved my luggage and moved. Three months later, I also had that job on Wall Street I'd dreamed of....

Which is why I am a big believer in serendipity, though I also understand that the wheels of miraculous intervention can only turn if we first lay the groundwork through our own efforts and then be willing to step out in faith.

This time around things have been different. I live in fear that I've lost my mojo, that magical belief in myself that somehow makes everything turn out right. As readers of this blog and my other: Everyday Do One Thing know, I've spent a concerted effort over the past year searching for and planning a move out west. In fact, I am about to embark on the final leg of the journey as I fly out to Evergreen and Colorado Springs tomorrow to look at rental homes and decide between these two locations and Lake Tahoe as my next home.

But this time that gut 'aha' feeling is missing. My intuitive mojo has deserted me. For the past week I haven't been sleeping well, which is a sure sign that I'm over thinking this thing. In the sporting world this is called 'choking' and it's what will hobble the best trained athlete, reducing them from a well-oiled machine into a dull-eyed sluggard with the athletic prowess of a five year old. For me, the choking sensation manifests in waking at 5am and realizing that I can no longer visualize my happy self pulling in the driveway of my house in the mountains, that I have no idea of what I would even do there. Instead my thoughts are filled with the anxious thoughts that no one will hire me, like the time ten years ago when I applied for a job at a publisher in Colorado Springs and despite the prestige of my previous career as an Assistant Vice President at a New York Investment Bank, they wouldn't even hire me as a secretary. I was crushed. There have been a series of these disappointments over the past ten years that have out-shined my accomplishments to such an extent that in moments such as these I can't see anything but the possibility of failure.

And that disturbs me because I've always thrived on optimism. I am a firm believer in the power of positive thinking. I know firsthand that we can use our positive thoughts in conjunction with a lot of hard work to create the lives we want. It's just that at the moment I'm having a difficult time conjuring the positive thoughts.

I'm doing two things to lend myself a hand: First, I've been subscribing to and reading a number of inspirational books and blogs on change and creating the life we dream of. One of the most effective I've found thus far is the First 30 Days, a website and book authored by Ariane de Bonvoisin. One tool that I've found useful is a daily inspirational email sent from her website that is just short enough to be read in a minute, yet which invariably provides an interesting way to look at the usual anxiety traps that come up with any new undertaking.  They are common but comforting reminders that our fear of the unknown can also be keeping us from our next great adventure.

The second thing I've started since the cloud of gloom shut out my optimism, is to simply remind myself that I have experienced the most wonderful 'aha' moments when I least expected them, that it didn't require any special positive thoughts on my part, just that I show up ready.....in fact it's when I was over thinking things and trying too hard to make things happen through my own efforts that I was stopped in my tracks.

As I head home to pack tonight and then to the airport tomorrow, I'm going to get out of my own way and let the good things come. I've done all the work, now it's time to get out there and rest assured that it's okay if I don't have all the answers just yet or even know how it's going to turn out, I just have to trust that it will all be perfect.


Keetha said…
I'll be thinking of you, and wishing good, positive changes for you. It's exciting. Keep us posted!
larramiefg said…
I AM thinking of you and know you'll find your way...perhaps in the road not taken.
I remember doing the same thing several times. Moving somewhere new -- without money, a job, a place -- and the opportunities always presented themselves.

Maybe this is the ultimate in faith...you go even when you don't sense the net below you. And the worst that can happen? You go somewhere else. Not so bad. :)

Keep us posted please!
Anonymous said…
I feel as though you are writing my life. I'm in the exact same place right now (except you seem to have a lot more money than me lol for visits and things like that) but i used to move to new places all of the time, and now I have just been stuck waiting for my aha moment that refuses to come. I know things will work out for you.

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