Had a snow storm come through. Forecast had said 8 to 10 inches. It was hard to tell across the yard. High winds had formed drifts and riffs with patches of grass showing. My awesome husband spent a good few hours pushing snow with the tractor clearing in front of the machine shed, the drive, and between the house and shop. Going out with Ginger, my cairn terrier, for our yard walk was a new adventure.
It is very hard to read snow. Solid white it is difficult to know where it is inches deep and where it is feet deep. I found myself trying to decide. Do I keep to my usual route? Do I make smaller circles inside the plowed clear area? Something else? Staying inside the cleared portion of our five acre yard was confining. And, honestly too easy. I do enjoy some challenge.
It occurred to me this same dilemma shows up in business and other aspects of life. The usual way, what we are used to, our habitual mode, becomes obscured. We understand that to stick to our routine will be difficult. Yet the alternatives may not be better. Those options are foggy too. Shift or hold course? I hear The Clash in my head “Should I stay or should I go now? If I go, there will be trouble and if I stay it will be double.” So we hesitate.
I don’t mind some challenge. I also want to avoid getting in deep. Possibly getting mired. Potentially ending up at a worse place and regret my decision. So we hesitate. Standing still with indecision does not serve us. It is the worst choice of all. So pick a direction and go that way.
I decide to abandon the normal route. Start close to the house where the wind left a clean channel. Turn toward the windbreak. Some deeper snow, extra effort required, not bad. Past the wind break it gets interesting. I do walk in to a big drift. Even Ginger, always game, leaping, leaping pauses to rest. She looks askance “You sure about this Mom?” With a course correction we move into a more manageable section.
Again this mimics work, relationships, life. A client this week was in a drift. Caught up in what he termed “His lack”. Lack of resources, drive, energy, all triggering avoidance. He had plugged into a webinar with a fairly well known, high powered, self development personality. Then, emotionally drunk, purchased a program that was beyond his budget. Disappointment with himself and fear of a potential financial slide were his snow drift. Our session was course correction. Mentally, emotionally, and actionably getting him to a track he can move forward in.
Throughout my walk I read the snow as best I can. Stick to the shallow ends of drifts. Go where grass can be seen. Walk the length of what’s plowed. On the north end of the yard we have pretty easy going and are able to do what we normally do just in reverse. Passing around an ancient apple tree I’m suddenly looking down the center of the windbreak. A view I rarely take in because I’m going the other direction.
It’s magical. Pines only grow needles where they can get sunlight. The center of the break is open, cathedral like. Morning sunlight amplifies the natural beauty. An Easter egg. This is why we stay in motion. And, I believe, why our routines get obscured. Why there are obstacles. All so that we have new experiences, learn new things, gain confidence through dealing. The world not just opening doors for us to learn and grow but, pushing us through. Then we can come around a corner and be transported by what we find. The altering of our prescribed path is not intended to drag us down. It is to lift us to new heights.
For Your Best Possible Self
Coach Christine Clark