Inspired By Stillness

Life is full of infinite opportunities and if you are still, you are able to see, and take ahold of them.

I am spending the month of August on Guemes Island, to pause, focus in the stillness, reflect, be in nature, and work from here, in the serenity and beauty the island has to offer. This allows me to reorient my mindset, think creatively in a non-linear way about my business and life, and how I can manifest dreams into action. There is no better way, to get clear by slowing down and being in nature.

Walking on the beach the other day, I stopped to watch this heron. The heron possesses many traits that are very admirable and serves as a guide that we can identify with, and use as a metaphor in life, and career.

The heron symbolizes stillness and tranquility, and how these two things are needed to recognize opportunities.

It also signifies determination, because there will always be plenty of marshes and ponds to wade through in life, just as we are experiencing now. The heron has focus and resourcefulness. Like the heron, we can make things happen, even if we have so little to work with, and even if the odds are against us, especially during this unprecedented time.

The heron represents wisdom and potential to be creative. 

When in flight, it’s one of the most powerful birds, and when it goes hunting, its purposeful stride is efficient. It will strike at just the right time, but from stillness. This represents the quick action we can take when opportunities present themselves. But first, we must become quiet to receive the clarity to take the action.

The more I thought about the heron meaning, it also reflects taking pride in achievements and represents wisdom, good judgment, and positivity to keep moving forward.

If the heron muddies the water by moving too much, judgement is lost, it creates ripples, and then it cannot see opportunities in front. Being frantic, just like our minds can be, can muddy the waters, cloud what we can see, and it works against us being able to see opportunities. The heron also has the patience to be still for long periods of time. This is the heron’s strategy. Quieting the mind is a practice and discipline that requires focus and patience to push through the “monkey mind”. With this quiet, allows room for insights to arise, and then infinite possibilities and ideas to reveal themselves through stillness, patience and focus.

Silence can reveal many things.

This idea also brought me to think about that when things seem like they are not going our way, what thought patterns do you notice? Do you notice a pattern of events in your life that you feel keep “happening to you”?  When you do, it is time to pause. Be in stillness. Take a breath, go within and make it a practice to become more aware of all those hidden aspects of your psyche that create noise, and untruth. What are some ways in which you bring about your own “self-undoing”, or not being present to see opportunities”? For example, a thought of “I am not good enough.”, or “it’s taking too long to find my next job given this time of uncertainty” or “I could never do that…or create a new career, especially in times.” These are examples of limiting beliefs, that create a negative pattern, keep you stuck, erode confidence, and blind us from being able to see opportunities that may be right in front of us, or ideas we have not thought of before.

Another way of applying this analogy of the heron is in our day-to-day interactions.

For example, if you are on a Zoom or Teams call, and you feel that it’s not going so well, or you are in a heated conversation. Stop, pause, be still. This can help with interrupting the frenetic noise our minds create with fear or anxiety, which clouds our ability to find a solution, or truly hear what the other is saying, before responding.

The only way, I have found to interrupt the negative thought patterns and behaviors is to still the mind by having a disciplined practice of meditation and reflection that allows me to dive deep into those darker corners of the unconscious, and shed light onto them. 

This grants greater awareness, and therefore the ability to more intentionally choose how I wish to think and show up in life. Then my sense of purpose is clear, I feel keen to make a difference, and continue forward on the winding path of resourcefulness.

It is time to reinvent, redirect those negative thoughts through stillness.

This then allows us to reorient our mindset to look through the lens of patience, hope, creativity, thinking in a non-linear way, different from how we have done things in the past, just as the stillness and resourcefulness of the heron. This is a new time, we need to create a new normal, internally, and externally. Quiet the mind of those negative thought patterns, and be in stillness. When you do, new and infinite opportunities and insights reveal themselves. Then you take inspired action to seize them. You do not have to it alone. There are tools and frameworks to be able to do this. Having an objective perspective, support, and accountability to help is critical for success.

Life is full of infinite opportunities and if you are still, you are able to see, and take ahold of them.

Happy to support you through the journey.