I remember the day I got sent home from a job for being a lousy salesperson. It was 1986 and I had a sales job in Phoenix. I was general manager of the business and I was doing pretty good, although I was working 7 days a week, 12 to 13 hours a day.
I went into a sales slump. All of a sudden I couldn’t sell water to a man dying of thirst. The pressure to perform was intense and I was failing. One day I walked into the office with my head down and the boss saw my zombie face. “Get outta here Ted, go home, I don’t want your negativity infecting the sales team.”
I got into my car dejected, defeated and demoralized. I drove home feeling like stepped-on poop. What was wrong with me? Why couldn’t I produce? What if I never sold anything again?
Just at that moment, I drove past a park in Scottsdale with a beautiful lake. Fountains sprung out of the lake into the air. It was a glorious spring day and the mountains reflected off the water. Just at that moment, a great song came on the radio. Something inside me shifted. It was like I woke up.
Suddenly, the job didn’t matter. It didn’t matter whether I sold anything again or not. I’d get another job if I needed to. What awoke within me was amazement and appreciation for this beautiful world. I had allowed it to go dormant. I went home and listened to some music, something I hadn’t done in a long time but really enjoy. I got re-connected with me. The next day I went back to work and started selling again like a machine.
Sometimes there are parts of ourselves that go dormant through non-use or neglect.Wonder, curiosity, amazement, silliness, fun, doing the things we love. These things constitute a connection with who we really are. When we lose touch with who we are, we experience Koyaanisqatsi, a Hopi word meaning “crazy life, life in turmoil, life out of balance, life disintegrating, a state of life that calls for another way of living.”
Our love for life and our joy in living can get covered up by habits and routine and schedule. But it’s love and joy that keep us inspired and fulfilled. I believe that to be really alive is to allow those parts of us to flourish. The alternative is to walk around so caught up in what you have to do that you lose sight of what you want to do and who you want to be.
I pulled weeds all day Sunday. I mean, I was on my knees, down and dirty, looking under the bricks to get to those lousy weeds. It’s amazing what happen when you start digging around in the dirt. You realize that there is a whole world of creatures living there. Spiders, earthworms, pill-bugs, aphids, ants. I’ve always found bugs interesting. It never occurred to me that I was sharing my property with so many.
The Rock, my three year old daughter, came up to me with an earthworm in her hand. “Look it’s a snake!!” She was very excited. She handed the “snake” over to her older sister, The Chick, and started to collect pill-bugs. They ran to the backyard and when I caught up with them, they had created a circle of rocks to corral the earthworm, who by now was looking a little weary of the whole affair. “It’s a worm, and if you don’t put it back in the dirt it’ll get sick and die.” They obliged.
I’m not really interested anymore in playing with bugs, snakes, toads or newts, but I never want to lose my fascination and curiosity about them.
As we get into the darker half of the year, things go dormant. The leaves fall and the sun spends more time vacationing down south. We have a tendency to want to sleep more, and stay indoors. Bruce Springsteen sang: “Everything dies baby, that’s a fact. Maybe everything that dies, someday comes back.” We know that when the sun comes back there will be new life. Will that be same with you?
This time of year is a perfect time to resurrect those valuable parts of you that you have lost touch with. To bring out of dormancy those positive aspects of you that speak to what you are really about.
What did you used to do at one time that made you feel alive and inspired? What did you used to do that awakened wonder, curiosity and amazement? Are you willing to go there again, maybe a little bit differently?
We’re all busy. It’s good to be busy, productive, making money, accomplishing things. I’m only suggesting that you always ask yourself one question: “Am I busy growing the best parts of me, or am I busy destroying them?
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Your Companion on the Path to Transformation,
TManTed A. Moreno Personal/Small Business Coach Certified Hypnotherapist Specializing in Your Success www.TedMoreno.com (626) 826-0612 Photo by Skye Moorhead www.SkyeMoorhead.com