This week we moved into our new place in West Asheville, North Carolina. If you know West Asheville at all, it is funky. Think Austin before it got slick. There are about 1000 different things happening in my life and in my inner landscape as we make this move –
What I’d like to do today is remind you of one of my favorite coaching techniques: The Living Space Tool. I’ll tell you how to do it and then show you, with an example from this morning, how it works.
(This tool is adapted from the Martha Beck Life Coach Training Program.)
Step 1: Identify the part of your current home/living space that you like the least.
Step 2: Ask yourself what about that space really bothers you.
Step 3: Gift yourself just a few moments to imagine how it could be beautifully resolved.
Step 4: Create turtle steps or tiny steps toward that beautiful resolution
Step 5: Do the first one.
**You can do this entire process in ten to fifteen minutes and the energy it frees up in your life is palpable.**
How it works: our home functions as a beautiful metaphor for our inner life.
Right now my new home, like my life, is a vibrant cacophony of old and new: dusty backpacks from our year of Central American travel hanging on the wall next to the new tiger-striped mid-century dining table delivered just this morning. I love it so much I keep petting it while I write to you.
As anyone who has ever moved understands, it is chaotic.
But as I found myself barely awake and pawing around for something comfortable to wear to drive my children to their adventure camp this morning, I hit a wall.
“BASTA!” I said to myself. Enough.
(Step One – identify the part of your current living space that you like the least. In this case, my suitcase.)
When I reflected on what was really bothering me, (Step Two) I realized I had put my own priorities on the back-burner. I spent
When I imagined how it could be beautifully resolved (Step Three) I thought of a fetching wardrobe I had spotted online. I even opened my iPad to find it again – yes! I could so imagine my clothes lovingly organized in that space. Just looking at it brought me a hit of happy. I promised myself that my furniture priorities were next on the list when I have time this weekend to do more research (Step Four.)
I also took a few moments as I dressed to sort my clothes on the bed and re-stack them nicely in the suitcase. (Step Five).
There is still a ton of chaos around me but I feel way better, knowing that I’ve remembered to bring my own needs more consciously into the picture.
What about you? How is your home a metaphor for your inner feelings and growing edges? I hope you will try this Living Space tool today and see what emerges!
It may not be children but rather your high standards for yourself at work or home which keep you from attending to your own needs fully. Trust me that energy will come out sideways as resentment if we are not able to lovingly create the space and the support we require inside our own home.
Tip: Start with something super small: one drawer, corner or shelf. And reply here to let me know you did it. I’d love to celebrate with you!
Also I just want to remind us that making this commitment to flourish and to accomplish and enjoy more is a PRACTICE. Not something we do one time and forget about. In fact it is a collection of practices which help us stand tall: one foot planted in the deep truths and our soul priorities and another equally important foot in this regular human life – including our less than perfectly organized homes.
P.S. Sorry those free coaching calls got filled up
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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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