I’ve been back from Kenya for almost two weeks and the question “How was your trip?” is something that can’t be answered in a couple of minutes.
Well, do you have an hour or two? How many tissues do you have so when I cry I don’t become a total snotty, teary mess? It seems like all of the tears I didn’t allow myself to have over the past decade come out now in moments of gratitude or when something in my soul moves and it results in my eyes leaking.
To say that my Eat-Pray-Love journey was a life changing is an understatement. To say that I fell in love with Mother Africa doesn’t describe the feeling of “I’m home.”
To experience Italy in a whole new light of spiritual depth is just one of the reasons why I can’t wait to bring women there in my Soul Vision Abundance Retreat this fall.
The other biggie that happened for me in Italy is I reset my financial set point, otherwise known as the glass ceiling or upper limit I was creating for my income.
While in Italy I accessed a deeper connection, trust and real relationship with Source and the Benevolent Universe that I’m a part of and that flows through me.
To stand in structures and piazzas in Tuscany that are centuries old stirs something in your soul of child-like wonder and awe, which you can access and claim to add more joy and wonder in your life.
Then in Africa…
I’ve never seen such poverty, hard work, hope, hopelessness, possibility, joy and gratitude in one place as I have in Kenya. And those were just my perceptions. (The pic on the right is what started out as the tin shack classroom, which we tore down and put a stone strucutre up.)
I have never fallen in love with people and their stories like I did when I was with those kids in the slums of Soweto (just outside of Nairobi in Kenya).
My genius and love of teaching people came alive when I was teaching kids in Kenya and at the same time learning from them what it felt like to choose joy in the present moment. Something so simple, yet we don’t do it nearly often enough.
To say that everything in my life changed, including who I thought I was and what I was doing in my business, is just the tip of the ice berg.
Here are the top three things in my heart to share with you now:
1. Do something with back-breaking hard work. Sweat. Do it until you hurt in your body. It shows you how innovative and focused you can be. If you can work that hard on chipping out a concrete floor with a chisel and a hammer, or haul water from a nearby ditch in buckets to hand mix into the concrete and mortar, you instantly see the gap in your willingness of hard work in your business. The bonus is when you feel your physical body like that, gratitude for your body and a deep motivation to take better care of it permeates your actions and intentions for your health.
There were moments I had to stop serving the beautiful kids I fell in love with because I was “out of shape.” I was angry, embarrassed and humbled all in the same breath because that was never going to be an excuse again for why I couldn’t serve people. And I learned that it wasn’t JUST through my physical actions that I can serve. Listening presently to someone, using your intuition and healing gifts, laughing, singing…these are all ways we can serve also.
2. Ask for what you want.
In Kenya, it was common for people to approach my team and I and ask for money, jobs, food, to sponsor their child to go to school…while waiting to go into the Masai Mara national park for a safari, we were stopped at the entrance gate to pay the fee to enter the park.
The local Masai village women were their waiting for the cars before they entered the park and would tap on the windows and ask the passengers what they wanted to buy.
Going to a market, you would have people approach you and show you their goods. The phrase “Looking is free,” was quickly learned. The “free looks” quickly turned into “You like? For you, I make a good price.”
There were moments of being highly annoyed by being approached constantly. This was just my own mirror of showing me where I stop in my marketing because I don’t want to be perceived as being annoying. Hint: In your marketing, you want to be annoying enough so the wrong people say no, and the right people say yes.
When I was working on the outside of the school one day on the project in Kenya, there was one man in particular who was intoxicated and got quite irate with me that as a woman I was doing a man’s work, which according to him it was a job that he could do much better. That was the moment I was chiseling (some more) and I was tired, I hurt and I was not going to let anyone tell me I couldn’t do this work. In that moment I got to decide what it meant to be compassionate, keep focused on the task at hand and own my power as a woman doing a “man’s work in a man’s world.”
Along with being triggered with annoyance, I looked at these asking folks with admiration of how willing they were to ask for what they wanted. They were absolutely clear about what they wanted. There was no hinting, not guessing, no “hoping and waiting.” They were right there, asking for what they wanted. If someone said no, they moved onto the next person.
This takes me to my next point:
3. Be clear about your yeses and nos.
When people in Kenya asked me for things, it was either a clear yes, or a clear no. There wasn’t the BS of “Maybe later,” or “let me think about it,” or “not right now.”
In that moment of being asked you had to be clear about what you were willing to do. Did you engage out of obligation, or because it was the “polite” thing to do?
I learned about the things in my life I was doing out of wanting to be liked, or just to be nice or polite. The mirror of all of the obligations I had tolerated in my life to that point were right there for me to look at.
Every experience in your life in business is either a reflection of what you are doing or not doing well, or a mirror of what you are tolerating.
Everything that triggers you into judgment, being annoyed, or any emotion (happy or sad), is a mirror of YOU.
This truth serum jolted my excuses loose and gave me the opportunity to see what was really stopping me from quantum leaping in my life.
To Your Soulful Success,