I think one of the greatest ways to bring creative and deliberate change to your life is over months. Months and Months.
For example: I began my spiritual direction practice in 2012. It hummed along, building slowly. My growth as an administrator and the practice’s growth as an organic energized being all its own was in tandem. As things increased, I was ready. In February 2017 I was creating a new website. I loved my sweet little Hapax Spiritual Direction website that a friend crafted for me to express my first foray into the professional world. Yet, after 5 years, I was a different spiritual director and my practice was evolving. I was in Daytona Beach on my hotel room balcony when I realized that the website I was creating was for a full time practice. My sole focus. That caused a pause within, and I closed my laptop and just looked out into the surf and sand and broad horizon. It was a bit of a cause for alarm because I loved my full time gig at the seminary. I loved the students and reveled in the learning that I myself underwent each day as I applied myself to tasks I was a rock star at, and those that needed someone else to review before it went live.
I brought 2 people into my circle of awe and discernment; my husband and my business coach. Neither were surprised, both were ready for 100% of this change. So, I sat with it. for months.
Months and Months.
I knew I needed to tell the prez of the seminary at some point. He needed to hear this from me. But I couldn’t do it until I was certain. In September I mentally thought I was ready. But I was waiting for my whole system to say “Go”. That moment came in November. In a private meeting, I knew he knew before I even said anything. My boss was the next person to be told. We sat on things till the first of the year to be sure sure. To be certain. To be absolute. Interestingly, this is almost the exact timeline back in 2001 when I was asking my spiritual director “when do you know its time to leave when things are going well?” And then it was and I knew. Because of the nature of an academic year, I planned to make my leave taking after graduation. It didn’t go quite as planned, but 3 months after graduation, just before the start of a new academic year, I left.
19 months of discernment and decision.
I will say, 6 months into this new and next, that the transition to sole focus on spiritual direction and coaching was only about 2 months. I’m sailing now. Sailing, because I was not afraid to take it slow, to move with the pace of this particular change.
Because I had a spiritual director and coach all along the way, I never felt adrift. I never felt like I was making a mistake. They asked the important questions so that I was not putting off the tough stuff. I went deep into the muck and mire of change whith groovy hip boots on.
We won’t know the length of time for your discernment and transition. It might be 22 months like mine. It might be 2 weeks because tragedy strikes and you have no choice. It can be at your pace, or it can take you over if you are not standing in awakness, ready to take the first step then the next step.
Hey, but that is what I do for folks. I walk with you. Casually or with deliberate goal achievement. But I promise to ask the hard questions so you don’t get caught off guard by what should have been asked in the early months. You don’t have to answer anything until you’re ready, because the energetic workings below our mental engagement goes to work and explores where our brains are not ready to explore.
What big vision do you have? What is the timing of that vision?