There’s a lot of talk these days about building your business with “ease and grace.” The phrase brings to mind an effortless flow, free from anxiety or struggle. To be able to build a business (or a life) that way is a beautiful thing, no doubt, but there’s one thing that constantly gets in the way. That one thing is, of course, (drum roll please…) us!
I wish it weren’t so. Personally, I wish that everything in my life was effortless and full of ease, but the truth is that, if it were, I wouldn’t actually BE trying to build ANYTHING. It’s exactly because something is poking me or compelling me or irritating me that I get motivated to change the status quo, move forward, or explore paths not previously taken.
But what is it that pokes and prods us and makes us feel restless and unsettled? What is the thing that takes us out of ease and grace and pushes us into the puddle of muck we so often find ourselves in?
Meet your companions on the journey…
It is believed by traditional peoples that every person walks through life with two companions. The first companion is Death, who walks on our left, asking us, “Are you using your gifts and talents?” It is Death’s job to connect us to the urgency of taking our gifts and talents out into the world, rather than telling ourselves that “one day” we will do the thing that we really love.
As we continue our journey through life, we become much more aware that time is passing. We come to recognize that there is only this present moment and when the moment is gone, it is gone forever.
Knowing that time is of the essence also reminds us that it is in the present moment that we need to clean up old business, release old stories, and heal old wounds so that we may, as Angeles Arrien, a well know cultural anthropologist says, “Course correct the past to create our preferred future.”
The companion that always walks with us on our right is Destiny. Destiny’s question to us is “Am I doing what I came here to do?” This is no small question and it’s probably the biggest pea under the mattress, creating discomfort and unrest in our souls. After all, do you know what it IS you came here to do? If so, are you doing it and, if not, why not?
And then there’s the Gatekeepers…
So these are our companions - poking and prodding us to fulfill our soul contract and do the work we came here to do. But there is another set of companions that also journeys with us and often contribute to our sense of frazzlement.
They are the Gatekeepers, and while their positive intention is to keep us safe, more often than not, they are using methods that are so old and outdated that they do more harm than good.
These Gatekeepers are connected to the voices that pop up as we respond to the nudging of Death and Destiny. They tell us that we’re not good enough, we don’t know enough or we don’t have what it takes to do the work we came here to do. They ride on the legacy of our parents, our peers, our culture and our ancestors. The voices are loud and relentless and, sometimes, just plain mean. They are the real work we need to tackle, if we are to truly stand in our power and reclaim our state of grace.
Finding our true state of grace…
So what about you? If lately, work seems to be overwhelming and life feels like it’s spinning off its axis, then maybe it’s time to step back from all the “doing” and get some guidance on what is REALLY getting in the way of all this ease and grace everyone keeps talking about. Take a step back, breathe in deeply, and ask yourself “what is it I TRULY want and what inside me can support my getting it?”
Are you using your gifts and talents every day? Are you doing the work you came here to do? Allow the answers to guide you to where you want to be on the path. Feel your way into the joy of what has heart and meaning and start to recognize the Gatekeepers for what they are – old patterns and behaviors that no longer serve you. It’s the first step towards making the myth of ease and grace a reality.