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Trusting the universe

I had a situation arise recently that reminded me, once again, of the power of trusting what we cannot see. Last fall, I talked with a woman about collaborating with her and several other coaches on an executive development project. I was interested and let her know. I heard nothing for 5 months. Then last week she emailed to say the project was ready to start, and was I still interested?

I was, even though I knew little about it and nothing about the coaches or execs I’d be working with.

At the time, I was working long days in Washington DC. She and I exchanged a flurry of emails about finding time to talk on a jam-packed weekend, getting her everything she needed to offer my credentials to the executive team this week, scheduling meetings to meet the other coaches, and so on. Everything about it felt urgent, especially when she said the organization was in a really tough situation.

Two evenings and several electronic exchanges later, I had a strong sense that I needed to withdraw from the project. I was already heavily booked and something about this just left me feeling not right about it. So I emailed her to that effect. My decision didn’t land well on her. She felt surprised, disappointed, and left in the lurch. We exchanged a few more emails, while I worked hard to manage the self talk.

The next morning I got word that my partner’s mother had had a stroke early that morning … a turn of events that cast a broad shadow over our plans for the coming months and made my availability for a new project even less certain.

I realized a little later that something in the universe was speaking to me. I don’t think I’m prescient. I’ve just learned to listen to that vague inner voice. It has a wisdom that extends far beyond what my rational mind can ever know.

It first began showing up right after I started my own business. I was scared and yet resolute. I didn’t know how I’d pay the mortgage and I knew I had to stay the course. I remember walking upstairs to the office one morning and thinking, I haven’t heard from Mike M in 4 or 5 years. I need to call him. Before I got to the top of the stairs, the phone rang. It was Mike M. Whoa!! It was creepy.

A similar thing occurred a few weeks later. Then another. And another. In time, the creepy feeling was replaced by a deep sense of awe for whatever this force was that knew and just kept adjusting my course. Now it’s commonplace, and I welcome it every time it shows up.

It’s still a subtle voice, so subtle at times that I think, “Why take this step.” And then the why becomes clear. What stands out for me now is that trusting myself has become indistinguishable from trusting the universe. We are the same.



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