4 big lessons from a transformational 2018

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Last year I wrote a post about the lessons learned from the previous year, and given 2018 was so transformative, I thought I’d continue the fun, sharing my biggest learnings and how I’ll be taking these with me in 2019.

I’ve been putting off writing this post because honestly, it’s uncomfortable to openly share the big inner shifts I’ve had to make; the subsequent changes I’ve been laying the foundation for; and how they will be shaping the direction of my business and life moving forward.

The underlying theme that is so obvious to me now, was finding myself in a place where I was completely out of alignment with how I was showing up in the world; which manifested itself physically and emotionally with some recurring health challenges.

My natural reaction was to ignore what was actually going on {let’s face it: growth and change is super uncomfortable}; but this only made things worse.

I knew that I needed to make some changes, but I just wasn’t sure how....yet.

In July, I signed up for my first ever three day silent meditation retreat which was an incredible experience. It created a safe container to completely switch-off and step away from the distractions of normal life; giving me the space to really tune into myself and listen to what I was being guided toward.

The biggest thing I took away from the retreat was being reminded of the enormous power that lies within us.

Often when we’re in the middle of our own trauma or crisis, we forget that we have the power to make decisions and choices - however hard or difficult they may be - to create the change we desire. After the retreat, I knew I change was inevitable; I just had to build up the courage to make it happen.

The idea for Bloom Rituals had been brewing in me for some time; and I knew the purpose, mission and values for this new venture where in complete alignment with the shift in direction I needed to make. Launching a separate business meant that I could still play it safe and keep my existing business running in parallel. The perfect plan! Or so I thought.

Observing how it played out over the last few months of 2018, it was clear that the business I had envisioned wasn’t going to work in its current format.

Thing is, sharing the Bloom Rituals mission felt so right and it was in complete alignment with my values and purpose. Perhaps it just needed to take a different form...For now.

Turning 38 in October was my big wake up call.

It suddenly hit me like a ton of bricks - I’m almost at the end of my 30’s and I’m so scared of what other people think of me that I’m willing to ignore my inner wisdom and suffer the consequences! This is the definition of insanity!

I took a step back from everything and began turning inward; finally learning to trust what my soul was calling me to do. It was during this process of deep inner work, that things started making so much sense to me and I knew the change was once again, inevitable.

So, here are the 4 big lessons that came from the transformational 2018...


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1.Ignoring your intuition is not a sustainable plan.

This was certainly the biggest lesson! It’s one thing to ignore our intuition, but even worse is when we don’t fully trust ourselves and the decisions we need to make in order to experience the growth our soul is craving.

What usually ends up happening is our ego jumps in and has an absolute field day, giving us all the reasons why we’re completely crazy for even having that thought and all the reasons why it’s not possible. We inevitably end up going down the spiral of of self-doubt and avoid taking the action we know in our heart we must take.

My {not so great} solution to ignoring my inner guidance was to numb out my emotions, which only led to more pain and a host of health challenges.

When we ignore our soul’s desires for too long, it usually ends up manifesting in ways like physical illness - this is because we’re creating dis-ease - storing the negative energy and holding on to these emotions in our body.

The key to shifting this energy is slowing down to listen to what our bodies are trying to tell us and allowing our emotions to guide us - they are our body’s way of communicating with us of whether we’re on the right path.

We’re so used to numbing out our emotions with our substance or habit of choice that we’ve become completely disconnected from what our body is trying to tell us!

To simplify: good emotions = follow these! Negative emotions = warning sign! Use this as a signal you need to pause and reflect as to whether this is something to pursue. {I’ll be sharing more on this in future posts!}

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2. You will never reach your goals & dreams by playing small.

After ignoring my intuition and allowing my ego to take centre stage; naturally I was filled with self-doubt and was constantly second guessing myself.

Our ego {AKA our inner mean girl} wants to keep us playing small in our zone of comfort and if we continually let it run the show, we’ll ultimately end up limiting our growth.

It’s our responsibility to recognize when we’re giving our ego too much airplay...yet it’s not always easy to distinguish between the voice of our ego and our soul.

Here’s the thing: when we create space for ourselves, whether through meditation; being in nature or journalling our thoughts - we’re able to slow down and tune in to the subtle whispers and nudges that our soul is trying to tell us. We’re very good at distracting ourselves with our various vices and technology; but more white space is what we need so we can pay attention to what our inner guidance is trying to tell us.

In our instant gratification world, I feel there’s a huge misconception that the path to following your dreams will be easy. That once you know what you want to do, everything will somehow magically fall into place! This could not be further from the truth.

It actually gets much harder before it gets better. This because we need to level-up and experience the growth to reach the next level of fulfilling our dreams.

This year I am committed to growth. Committing to stepping into the next level of myself that I know I’m capable of and is waiting to be unleashed.

3. Not playing in your zone of genius limits your growth.

Being a naturally creative person, I’m good at a lot of things! While I love doing all the things, I know this is not the way to master a skill and become exceptional at something. I realized I’d fallen into the trap of doing things I was merely ‘good at’ and not lasering in on my zone of genius.

As an introvert and empath, honoring my energy is essential and plays a big role in how I show up as my best self. I spent a lot of time meditating; visualizing and journaling what I was being called to create and let my soul lead the way on this...

So what will I be focusing on?

Writing.

Writing is definitely at the top of my list.

I’ve missed writing {the main reason I fell in love with blogging 10 years ago!} and will be using this space a lot more to share my learnings, ideas and teachings with you. I’ve enrolled in two writing courses to sharpen my skills and focus on growth in this area.

Teaching & Mentoring.

I adore teaching. Ever since I taught my first class at General Assembly 3 years ago, I knew it was something I was born to do and it brings me enormous joy being able to share what I’ve learned to empower other people.

My goal is to bring all of the skills I’ve learned teaching offline and start incorporating them online as well as leading workshops in the Bay area. I have fun plans in the works so make sure you sign up to my newsletter to stay in the loop!

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4. Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.

Overwhelmingly, my big lesson was that change is inevitable - we are continually evolving - as is every person and living thing on our planet - whether we actively want to acknowledge it or not.

While this change is inevitable, our growth is entirely optional.

Yes, that’s right. We get to choose if we stay in our safe little zone of comfort or take the risk and pursue the path that we know we are entirely capable of- but that requires a whole lot of getting uncomfortable.

I know which choice I’m making.

In light of all of these lessons, it feels right for me to align my website and business under my own name - hence the new digs! I know that I will continue to evolve and grow over the years, but the one thing that will stay the same is me.

I’m also fully stepping into my gifts as an introvert and empath - I’ll be sharing a lot more on this and why self-care is a mandatory and integral part of my life.

So, this is me, showing up fully; and wholeheartedly embracing this new season.

What about you lovely? Will you be choosing growth over comfort this year? What was your biggest learning that came out of 2018? How will you be using this to propel you forward in 2019?

Love,
Rachel x