I must be a masochist. Or, why I love my work.

Let’s reflect, shall we?
A while back I hosted my first Salon in over 6 years- the first Salon ever for Restoring Power. The topic was community and partnership. I opened, as I usually do, with about five to ten minutes of my recent and personal reflections on the topic then I put out a questions to the group: “What words come to mind when you think of community and partnership?” My two words were vulnerable and gratitude.

The community of disconnected women…
As the voices, thoughts and opinions of the women in the room opened like a fine bottle of wine, what became clear was that regardless of the amount of perceived support we have in our world (friends, church, facebook, google, classes, healers) or the more stability (marriage, kids, steady home life, steady work), women are feeling LESS CONNECTED and more isolated than ever.

The masochist part…
From wanting my new business to be successful to living with some level of expectation given the work I do, I am trying to navigate my way through this crazy life in a way that is not only authentic but vulnerable. Why on God’s green earth would I SEEK OUT vulnerability, you ask? Excellent question. The answer is NOT that I am a masochist (at least not in this case anyway). I have said for years that true power lies in vulnerability, grace, courage. That real power is the absence of force. And while I think I’ve done a pretty good, great job at practicing and embodying what I talk about, in the recent past I’ve been hit with a whole new level of learning in this domain. This new level of learning is way vulnerable. Way deep. And way good. It’s making me be a better wife, friend, and practitioner. The vulnerability is making way for my own mastery. I know, cool, right?

What Don Draper and Regina Perata have in common…
What’s vulnerable to one person is not necessarily vulnerable to another. I’m okay with looking bad, I’m GREAT at asking for help (I love it even, because of the growth it brings me), I can receive material gifts or service gifts like a champ. And I can nurture, love, and support my family and friends until the cows come home. But when it comes to allowing others to really contribute deeply, steadily and emotionally to me, on a heart level – well, I run for the hills faster than Don Draper pours his bourbon on a hard day at Sterling Cooper. What do you run from?

Walkin’ my talk…
I’m grateful (ahh, the second word from the Salon) that I chose (and still choose) my work. As I continue to do deeper work with my clients – ask them to look harder, closer into the dark side where it can be scary- I am called to walk my own path right along with them (regardless of how much work I’ve already done this lifetime). There is no rest for the weary; I believe we are called to embody our work at deeper levels as we evolve. And so… I am.

What’s your occupational hazard?
While I sometimes abhor these “occupational hazards” of being a healer-type, I am grateful the work itself demands and calls for me to continue developing myself. I can’t imagine a world where “I’m done” or I don’t “look and see” or worse, where I ask others to do work I’m not willing to do. I love living in a world where the journey ain’t over till it’s over.

And scene.
What words come to mind when you think of community? Partnership? What is your occupational hazard? What and where are you called to keep learning? Think about it. Where do you want to grow? Where do you want mastery? THAT is precisely the place to get vulnerable. Go on, jump in. You know you want to, you masochist you.

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