How do you corral the psyche and imagination of a room full of Zoomers? Asked Amy K. Musson, Executive and Leadership Coach. With deftness and grace, Amy guided the Livie & Luca Community Huddle group through our own metaphorical life path ahead and provided small prompts for how to enact actual change.
She began by putting the group at ease: “Each one of you was meant to be here today and you’re going to get exactly what you need.”
We were to imagine being on our most authentic path. “Not being in somebody else’s box, but a little extra wide expansive space, especially with the upside down world today.” Amy described how many of her clients right now, in acknowledgement of our times say, “I may as well start living the way I want to live since everything else has changed.”
We closed our eyes, took some deep breaths, and visualized our path and also the obstacles.
“Sometimes the best path comes from love not logic. Give space for the illogical and intuitive. Don’t edit or second guess your own thoughts. Whatever comes up just go with it, just listen.
Open the space to see your path. You don’t need to see the destination, the path you’re seeing is your authentic life. It might be straight, twisty, or have side treks that move out and rejoin. There is no right or wrong. Some people might see words or sense something in their body. It’s all good. Take comfort that it’s yours and that this is your deepest path, the one you know has been waiting for you. It can be about your whole life or just one piece of it. Notice and be aware of any obstacles or roadblocks. They might be internal obstacles to do with your thinking or your fears, or legitimate external obstacles.”
After the visualization Amy invited a few brave folks to do some sandbox coaching, to just jump in and do a little transformation of some obstacles. “Even if you aren’t being coached, you’ll hear something you needed,” Amy advised us.
Without going into personal details, these are some of the prompts that Amy gave:
- What does the obstacle want to tell you? What is it saying?
- Bless/honor whatever the obstacles are. And if there’s anything that’s worth keeping, grab it.
- What is waiting for you past the obstacle? What else is possible?
- If the universe could hand you a permission slip about your new path, what would be the most important permission? Write it down.
- What would your path look like if fear dropped back?
- Trust that what’s beyond the obstacles is a bigger love and joy.
- There are always a few good nuggets to take from anxiety and fear, but then they have to be shooed out of the way. It’s trying to keep you safe but almost in a mistaken way.
- There has to be a counter statement to the saboteur, the inner critic, the fear voice, the scary little gremlins in the closet. It doesn’t mean you make fear go away, but you pat it on the head and say thank you, I know it’s kind of scary and let’s go anyway.
When one of the listeners noticed that she gleaned something important from someone else’s sandbox session, Amy pointed out “We often feel that the problems on our path are somehow only ours, but every human is on a journey, facing their fears, and all paths seem fuzzy. The commonality of what we share in human growth is so connective. If we could all stop and feel each other and know that even with the ones that seem so different from us, they are still facing so many of the same issues. And to have that comfort and compassion of the shared journey opens up a lot for me when I’m feeling distant or separate.”
After two productive sandbox sessions, Amy stressed that coaching is about the action that moves you forward on your path.
“On a path there is the moment of standing and just looking but we spend a lot of time doing that part. We want to design the path rather than waiting for it to appear. Part of walking down a path is taking steps, being willing to be in motion and knowing that you don’t have to have it all figured out. You are allowed to walk three steps and say and now what do I have to do?
“Jot down one action you are going to take and stick it on your calendar. And then take just 15 minutes and do it.”
In closing, a participant remarked that Amy’s words reminded her of the children’s book, We’re going on a Bear Hunt! by Michael Rosen.
“We're going on a bear hunt.
We're going to catch a big one.
What a beautiful day!
We're not scared.
Uh-uh! A forest! A big dark forest.
We can't go over it.
We can't go under it.
Oh no! We've got to go through it!
Stumble trip! Stumble trip! Stumble trip!”
We thank Amy for her guidance! We will stumble and trip along our beautiful paths, right through the dark forests, and hopefully find a bigger love and joy on the other side.