Happy Friday! This week has included some serious highs including feedback from early readers of The Flourish Formula, like this note from Kajal:

“I just read the first 3 chapters of your book. I had put it off, truthfully because I was afraid of the truth I would read and the change it would push me to make (because as you say, there is fear that slowing down will mean getting less accomplished). After reading it, I feel inspired, understood, validated, terrified, and lost. I feel like you are inside my head and telling me truths that are so true, but I would not have realized them on my own. I’m certain many others will feel the same way. I look forward to reading the rest and seeing where this goes for me. Thank you for writing it and sharing. It’s a gift.”

and from Jeni:

“Courtney – this book is SO. GOOD…. it is just amazing how much it hits the key points of rich content yet warm tone.”

If you would like your own free copy Register Here for my upcoming Virtual Book Release Party on Oct 27.

Also I have created a brand new author Facebook page. Like it here to get all the behind the scenes updates on the book launch.

Yet in spite of all this goodness (or because of it being a stretch week) my familiar gremlins have also made an appearance. They communicate in a thousand different ways but their core message remains the same:

“You didn’t get enough done today.”
 
Can you relate? All of us have a personality. That ego-driven inner voice which keeps us chasing something we can never catch.  And truthfully when in its grip we feel a bit numb. Frazzled. Disconnected from life.

And yet – the beautiful thing is that our more spacious perspective is always really close by. Closer than it seems. Our essence.

Some days I get to live and look at the world mostly from inside this spacious place. It feels amazing. Like swimming in warm water: fully immersed in gratitude. Laughter comes easy. I literally feel a buzz in my heart. Deep traction in my work and present to my kids.

And then. Pop.

The warmth drains away and some random anxiety moves in. 

What caused it to shift? How can I get the good stuff back?

As I talked about this week in my group coaching call with women in the Flourish Coaching Program — none of us get to choose what rattles us.

Life presents endless challenges or as those of us in life-coach-land like to call them: “growth opportunities.”

And so we begin again.

Like last night when I went all the way around the Eight Flourish steps (which are really a wheel of course, more than a linear progression) and had to start over with Step F or “Figure Out The Box You are In,” which is all about finding freedom from the constant inner critique via The Enneagram.

The Enneagram, pronounced “any-a-gram,” is an incredibly incisive human personality map. There are nine different types, three who lead with their “head,” three who lead with their “heart” and three who lead with their “gut/body.”

My struggle began yesterday afternoon after a call with our web developer putting the final touches on the new website. I’m not sure what happened exactly. Growing pains? Visibility anxiety as I step into this next level? But after that call I just felt “off.”

The offness lingered despite my efforts to lose it by enjoying a late afternoon walk. Back home that evening after dinner I was in the kitchen when I realized: “Wait a minute…. I know these voices.” So low I almost didn’t hear it was the steady drumbeat of my inner taskmaster, who is always underwhelmed by what I manage to complete.

Even though like 97% of me was following those gremlins (inner critical voices), 3% was able to stop and notice the overall pattern of equating my worth with my work.

Why does that matter? Because noticing and “de-velcroing” from the pattern is where relief is to be found.

Even though I couldn’t force a change of mood just that awareness brought immediate help and the beginning of a shift back to an equilibrium. Especially when coupled with a big dose of self-compassion and going to sleep early doused in lavender oil.

Our Enneagram voices do not tell the whole truth.

They make us forget that we are worth much more than our narrow type voices would have us believe. That we are already beautiful and whole, despite our imperfection. That we have the mastery we need to live engaged Now, even with all that there is yet to learn. And that our vulnerability is actually the portal we travel into some of the very best life has to offer: authentic connections, tenderness, and creative self-expression.

If you let it, The Enneagram is a teacher who will never let you down. It complements any awareness path you are already on. And it is the foundation for the Flourish process.

As a gift to readers of The Flourish Formula I have created a “Flourish Kit” or a collection of complementary resources. I’m enjoying sharing them with you ahead of time here and giving you a sneak peek. So next week you can expect a guide to help you discover and deepen inside of your Enneagram type. 

Also if this conversation raises any questions for you I want to let you know that I will be doing a live Q & A as part of my Virtual Book Release Party on Friday October 27. As those who know me will will attest, the Enneagram is always fair game.

So bring those questions and get your own free copy of The Flourish Formula, which includes a whole chapter on the Enneagram that is so meaty my book coach said it wants to be its own whole book. (In fact you downloading your free copy during that hour, 12-1PM CST on Friday Oct 27, will help me in my goal of Amazon best-seller in my subgenre.)

Warmly,

Courtney
PS please forward this email on to a friend you think would enjoy this free resource and guidance on how to slow down and accomplish/live/savor more. xo

Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual master's degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School and is the author of The Flourish Formula: An Overachiever's Guide to Slowing Down and Accomplishing More and creator of the 8-Step Flourish Coaching Program. Courtney helps busy women unlock their greatest gifts and thrive in their personal lives. In the summer of 2017 she followed a long time dream and moved to Nicaragua with her husband Richard Amory (they met in Nicaragua in the Peace Corps) and their three children where together they are exploring volcanic islands, colonial cities and beaches. They have made their home in Granada where they are being tutored by their neighbors in the art of slowing down and living more. Interested to learn more? Each month Courtney offers a handful of complimentary Flourish Assessment Calls for new or potential clients. You can schedule one here.

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