Sunday, November 9, 2014

Simply Authentic...Your Soul Voice is Calling. Receiving Assistance: An Earthly Angel

Receiving Assistance: An Earthly Angel

My last blog post was about requesting guidance. This one is about receiving assistance. Remember how I wrote in that last post about the scary 4 ½ month period I went through in-between jobs? Well…I haven’t told you about this one particular earthly angel who came to me when I badly needed one.

Early in the summer of 2010 I had needed to call companies like Portland General Electric to let them know my payment would be late. PGE was very accommodating as I had a 20 year history of never having a late payment, much less a missed one. Yet that was not a fun call to make, trust me. And I had to make four of them. Perhaps some of you have been there. I never had before.

Each person on the other end of the phone was respectful, kind and professional. This was a first for me, but it certainly wasn’t for them with the high unemployment rate in Oregon at the time. I was certainly not alone in my predicament.

The lowest point in all of this, and it pains me to remember it, came the Saturday morning of my moving sale.

When I moved to the Portland area from Salem in September of 2007, I had a knowing the next time I moved – it would be with a lot less “stuff.” I’d been carrying around furniture and other belongings from when I was married for over 12 years, things I needed to release.

That knowing didn’t make it any easier that Saturday at 8:00 am. I’m not going to share what I wrote in my journal that morning other than the last line, which was “I ask for my heart to be healed and for peace to come in.” I’ve never felt more low. All of my stuff was out there for strangers to look at and see if they wanted to give me a dollar for it. I was relying on the sale to pay the first month’s rent in my temporary residence. Talk about being in a precarious situation!

The weird thing is, within about an hour, this woman showed up. I don’t even remember her name. I gave her my card, asked her to keep in touch, and never heard back from her. She was probably somebody’s grandmother. I will guess early to mid 60’s, somewhat heavy-set, shorter, wavy graying hair. Warm eyes and a kind smile. Once she showed up (she ultimately stayed with me for about four hours, and also came back later in the afternoon to purchase an expensive bracelet), I suddenly started having fun. It was like being in retail again, and this woman was shepherding people around my place. When someone walked in, she would say things like, “Make sure and see the lovely jewelry in the back room! There are all kinds of wonderful home d├ęcor items and canning goods in the side room!” Etc. She became my co-pilot, my sales clerk. My angel of an unremembered name.

I had almost $260 in cash by the end of the first day, and the rest of the rent money was there by the end of the following day. I donated nearly everything that didn’t sell to the Union Gospel Mission. This was an incredibly freeing feeling – knowing I had the means to donate, when I had felt so low and powerless just the morning before. And what I took with me was just what I needed.

I asked for a sign before I resigned from a horrible job and ran into the man who would become my next manager a half a block later. On the prize-winning lowest day of my life, I asked for my heart to be healed and for peace to come in…and this earthly angel in a grandma’s body walked into my moving sale and completely reframed my experience.

I couldn’t make up stuff this good if I wrote fiction!

Assistance and guidance are available to us at all times, if only we ask and pay attention. And I know from my own experience angels come in all shapes, sizes and forms.

Don’t hesitate to reach out.  

Authentically Yours,

Laura

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Simply Authentic...Your Soul Voice is Calling. Requesting Guidance

Requesting Guidance

My last post was about listening to the IVIN (Inner Voice/Intuitive Nature), and I gave a specific example, one involving dear friends, from my own life. 

Here’s another personal example illustrating how it’s wise to not only listen to the IVIN, but to ask for guidance.

In early 2010, I was working at a claims job I had grown to hate, while going through voice teacher apprenticeship training with the Transformational Voice Institute, which I loved. I was using my PTO time to attend the weekly apprenticeship meeting on Friday afternoons, and was in the studio two other evenings a week after work – for my personal voice lesson and to co-teach or assist with a voice class. The job I had at the time couldn’t be accomplished in 40 or 50 hours a week, much less 36. There were times I worked from my home computer at midnight, trying to catch up.

Push came to shove, and I needed to make a choice. My work product was suffering to the point where my PTO would be revoked and I couldn’t attend the TVI meetings anymore. I asked myself, “Why would I give up something I love to save a job I hate?” I knew I would regret that decision for the rest of my life.

But the idea of quitting my job without having another income source filled me with fear. Terror. How could I possibly be so financially irresponsible? I had obligations and commitments; I couldn’t just quit!

When it became very clear that choice was upon me, I took a deep breath and went for a Godwalk, my usual walking route around the office. I prayed. I asked for guidance as to what I should do now, what I should apply for, what my next steps were. While waiting at a stoplight, I literally said (I don’t recall if aloud or silently in my head), “If I’m going to quit my job, in this economy, without having another one, I want a sign.”

The light turned green, I crossed the street, and halfway down the block I saw Paul, whom I worked with in the 1990’s at the same quasi-public insurance company I mentioned in my last post. He runs, I walk, and our paths would occasionally cross. But for the first time, that day, he stopped running and asked me where I worked. I said I was seriously considering resigning, and he suggested I send my resume as Matrix had some new business coming on board which would mean new hires. I had to memorize his email address in my head as neither of us had business cards, anything to write with, or phones on us.

If that’s not an immediate answer to a prayer, I don’t know what is.

So, I put in my notice – a long term notice – with that company, and kept up with my voice training.

I was unemployed for four and a half months—applying and interviewing with other companies and signing up for temp work all the while—before the job with Matrix materialized. I went through some scary times, times when I wasn’t even sure how I would put gas in my car. But somehow money always mysteriously showed up when I needed it, even a room to rent for 60 days; then when the job did materialize, I was hired at a substantially higher annual income than I was making at that shitty job I left.

That was a happy day.

And during that uncertain period, I learned how to trust. How to believe if I only listen to what is true in my heart, and take a step…even if seemingly off a cliff…I will be provided for.

And now, over four years later... This job has been great (if certainly challenging and frustrating at times – that’s the nature of a claims job) and Paul one of the best managers I have ever had. I’ve also known for over a year it’s time to make a change. I have workshops to facilitate (I’ve already written and taken a “test drive” of one full two day Authentic Expression workshop), classes to create, at least two more books to write, acting to do, and authentic performance to teach.  My first voice student in about three years recently signed up for her first lesson. I can’t do all of this and continue to work a full time job at the same time.

Writing my resignation letter (at home) wasn’t easy. In fact, I’m surprised how difficult it was, considering how ready I have been to leave, and for how long. Tears trickled down my face while I was typing it and I kept having to stop to blow my nose. It took me two and a half hours to work up the courage (at the office) to send Paul a simple e-mail…”Do you have time to chat for a few minutes at some point today?” I’ve given ample flexibility for my notice period as it would be nice to see a new examiner hired and trained before I leave. So at this point I don’t know exactly when my last day will be.

I do know it’s time to move on and more fully embrace my heart callings. This time I’m more financially prepared, and it is not such a dramatic need for change…yet I’m still stepping out into the unknown, ready to take another risk. Nothing great comes without risk and challenge. There are times we simply must leave the security of the safety net to embrace our full potential.

In fact, I would say we must continuously do so.

I will see you there…where the sea-watery essence of our colliding dreams meets the open waves and sandy ground of the sun-warmed beach.

Authentically Yours,

Laura