S P A C E
"Do I have to fill up the whole page?" she asked, looking up at me expectantly.
"Not at all" I replied, "You can go with the flow of what would like to be drawn."
I read so many headlines, articles and online posts about our busyness epidemic. About our need to fill up whatever empty space there is. To grab a big black marker and colour the entire white page in black ink. Dark, bold, black. Turning white spaciousness to black darkness in an instant.
Empty space in your work diary? Well you better fill that up before you become an idle, lazy sloth. What's your boss going to say?
Empty space on an office floor? We better cram in more desks, help boost morale, surrounded by more noisy humans.
Empty space in your day? Oh well how can you fill that up with noise, chatter and with doing 'stuff'. Quick. Chop chop.
"The best way to survive and thrive in the fast-paced modern world is not to speed up but to slow down." - Carl Honore, In Praise of Slow
This 10 year old already peering at her white sheet, like the blank canvas of doom. Wondering how she would fill this up in the short time that she had. It turned out, she left lots of space where the magic could play out in her drawing. Left to her own devices, she found out for herself that she didn't need to fill up the page. Empowered, I hope, to let space be space.
Dr Stephen Covey's Seven Habits of Highly Effective People talks about the space that exists between the stimulus and the response. In that space is the power to choose. Be proactive. Invoke your imagination, your freedom to choose your response. Slow down. Allow time for your best response to bubble up.
I went to a training session the other week. It was about the benefits of relaxation. It was a very informative, fact heavy session, followed by a much needed relaxation. During the session, what I was yearning for most was some space. A pause between questions. Allowing for the words to sink in. To process. To settle where they needed to settle, before being presented with more words, facts and deadly powerpoint bullets.
Being proactive is easier said than done a lot of the time. When our very instinct is to jump in to the rescue; to offer help, support, options, solutions, coulds, shoulds and advice.....Anchoring through your personal metaphors works. This is some of what I teach in my Alternative Leadership training.
"Music is the space between the notes." - Claude Debussy
The Power of the Paws.
Count to 5 after asking a question, and, breathing in, count another 5, breathing out. Within this silent space, you have permission to wander, to create, to process, to imagine, to dream and to sink into a wiser, more ancient part of your being. To co-create your creative response and your reality.
At a deeper level, I have learnt how to hold space for myself and my clients at the Academy for Soul Based Coaching Training. Space is the container where energy can flow. A sacred space where thoughts, feelings, ideas can bubble up and surface. Space to listen to our innate soul wisdom. It's there, waiting for you to slow. To slow down and listen. That's where the magic lives. Within you. For Yin energy to flow in our Yang heavy Corporate world.
"Do not try to save the whole world or do anything grandiose. Instead create a clearing in the dense forest of your life and wait there patiently until the song that is your life falls into your own cupped hands." - Martha Postlewaite
Give yourself permission to create the clearing. To create space in your life. However tiny. You deserve this from your life. Slow down that little bit more. Take a breath.
What's with the sloth? It's my son's toy, called Slothie. I took this photo on holidays in Croatia this summer. Add more sloth like idleness to your life. Allow for the creative magic to flow.
Please message me for a complimentary consultation - space to decide if soul based coaching is for you.
"There's space in between Where they'll meet" - Threads, MaMuse