The day I listened to the nagging feeling I did something about it. I pulled over to the curb 100 metres from home and called my sister. In that moment I was certain that things would change. As the conversation unfolded I could feel it through my body, that my life was about to be different. Not any kind of different, you know the kind that you experience when you finally relinquish control? That day I did. I trusted my intuition finally found my why. All I had wanted was right before me in a flash of insight. I questioned its arrival and reconciled with my soul that this was the right thing to do because what I was about to do, was finally found my why.
Why That Day?
What stopped me that day, and not any other day? That day I was ready to listen. In the moment of insight as I was on that call, although I didn’t know it at the time, I made three declarations:
- I was going to live it (whatever ‘it’ was)
- I was going to study (whatever that meant)
- I would coach women (however that would occur)
When you finally decide you’re going to take the path you always knew you would take, that path speaks to you, and you start predicting the future, imagining what it might be like.
That was day one. There always has to be a day one.
Here’s what I think about any day one. It is a moment of unclarity because it’s a turning point. It eats into the flow of living. Nothing is certain and not much can be controlled because you don’t have all the answers. You’re still living in all the questions. No matter how much predicting you do, you’re still in the story of explaining to yourself or someone else what it is that’s speaking to you.
The Soup of Words and Emotions
That day in a soup of words and emotions I made judgments about myself and the world. I was a visionary. I expressed what I wanted to do to take care of my concerns about women. For all my adult life I assessed these this:
“Many women live in self doubt, don’t observe their intuition and inner power. They either give their power away to men or they stand up and fight against men. They don’t know how to put themselves out there as equals while maintaining their femininity. They struggle and strive in a male dominated world and they don’t know what to ask for or how to ask.”
These are my observations and I don’t expect anyone to hold the same observations as me. But understand this about me and my day one…they are what drove me. They are my ‘why’. In a world where I had observed many injustices I finally declared I was going to live my ‘why’.
How My Why Comes From My 15-Year-Old Adolescent Self
We embody everything we experience. Whatever we become aware of, that stands out as something to take notice of, we embody because we are human and humans are driven by concerns. Things that matter to them.
I was a very young swimming teacher. I left school early and fell into swimming teaching because my whole family was involved in swimming. At a suburban swim school in Melbourne Australia, my mum managed, my dad was head swim coach, and my three older sisters who were past swimming champions were also teachers.
One of my roles was to teach groups of school children. One of the schools came from a very low socio-economic, high crime area in Melbourne. Many of the children were the innocent victims of vicious Domestic and Family Violence. Some were so damaged emotionally and psychologically. Their problems ranged from disruptive behaviours, learning difficulties, emotional trauma and brain damage.
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When The Lunches Came To An End
The school used to give the children free lunches because they were undernourished. The day I learnt they had stopped doing that because the children weren’t given lunch on the weekends and giving them lunch during the week would confuse and traumatise them, I cried. The day that one of the boys I taught hid in the change rooms then underneath the lane rope boxes at the end of the pool because he was so traumatised by the blood coming from his knocked up lip, I cried. He had witnessed a horrendous crime against his mother and would probably never be the same.
I distinctly remember saying to myself that day: “What is it going to be like when these kids grow up and leave home? They are most likely going to commit crimes themselves and it won’t be their fault. They were born into injustices they couldn’t control.”
In that moment I embodied my why. In that moment I said to myself. This could have been me! But it wasn’t.
The only difference was the fortune I was born into
Fast track about 40 years…
Why It Took Me Until My 50’s
I found satisfaction in teaching swimming and I went on to manage many swim schools, then in early 2000 I bought an established swim school in Mackay Queensland. I loved the children and the mums and dads and I saw such wonderful joy on their faces. Swimming teaching was my passion and I was really good at it.
I developed a system where every child and parent was treated with respect, equality and kindness, an environment where every child could thrive. In different ways I was living my purpose. Yet something was still missing.
In 2006 I felt this strong pull in my body I couldn’t ignore. So I sold up the business and moved south to Brisbane. I went from real estate to vocational education and training, and coaching. I went from managing the curriculum for a commercial training organisation to consulting in my own business in vocational education and training, and coaching.
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The Voice Deep Within
What I didn’t do for the next seven years, was listen to my voice deep within. I was driven by lifestyle, comfort and security. Looking back on that experience without regret I know now that I wasn’t observing the nagging feelings. I never stopped thinking about those children but I was ignoring the role I wanted to play. I was taking care of something else that mattered to me, my family, security and status.
I had been a coach in many different domains all my life but nothing was to prepare me for what was to come. Over the next three years I was to discover a whole new realm of learning. I spent that time finally discovering what it was that had been missing, and what I was going to do about it. I stayed true to me, and to this day I thank every moment of that new learning because it taught me these things:
- Listen to my concerns – the things that truly mattered to me
- Stick at something through grit even in moments of self doubt
- Give others a voice but not authority over my choices
Where am I now?
- I’m still a learner
- I don’t have all the answers
- I do have the means to help
- I have a lot of questions I’m still living in
- I’m equipped to help other women with their questions
- My why journey enables me to help others find their why
I want to help you find your why.
The way I see it is this. Here’s a few options you might want to consider
- You can keep ignoring your why
- You can continue to give others authority
- You can decide it’s time to listen
- You can use me as a vehicle for that
You’ve read this for a reason. My wish for you is that you do, and no matter what, you follow your dream. If you don’t have a dream or a passion, that’s okay. Your day one will come, and when it does your voice will speak to you.
What is listening to your voice deep within?
It’s listening to your intuition, deep within your soul. You know those gut feelings that you sometimes push aside because you’ve got to get on with your day, or you’re trying to take care of something else that really matters to you? They are the feelings to listen to.
Ask yourself this…
What’s the cost to your soul if you keep ignoring what you’re meant to listen to, or allowing self doubt and the need to have certainty mask the feelings?
To help you get started I’ve designed a reflective activity to help you get to your day one.
This is an activity that will help you take actions from your inner voice.
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I wish the best of care for you this day and every day.
Do you have any questions? Comments? Insights? I’m here to listen! Let’s chat below.
P.S. I also have a Facebook page where I’d love to chat with you and answer your questions! Click here and like my page.