I’m blessed. I’ve been struggling a bit of late and my ability to delve in, dive in and write has been impeded. I wasn’t entirely certain about what was going on but, as the weeks of the summer faded, and back-to-school time kicked in, I connected with some of the reality. The recent blessings came from conversations with Fred and Brad. I went to them for a little coaching…some reflection on thoughts that have been percolating for months.
“It feels,” I imperfectly remember saying, “that yet again things are shifting for me.” I remember years ago when I began much more earnestly building my coaching practice. At the time, Fred laughed and said something like, “Ah, so you’re serious about this now.” I had signed a lease on my own office space.
Another time, about two years ago, having been prompted, prodded, challenged and ultimately coached by Ann for some time before, I took another deeper step towards being serious. So over the last year I stepped up two aspects of my work: public speaking and going deep with client companies.
This year I collected 12 visa stamps–four from countries I hadn’t visited before. At times, I measure my happiness by the number of stamps in my passport. What’s more, I made friends and connected deeply (that is, made people cry) in all of those places.
I also started working more fully with teams–even dedicating whole days to working within a company. In those instances, it’s felt like I’ve had a different, larger impact.
This all unfolded against a backdrop of the launch of Cojourneo, the platform for online workshops, which Kevin and Dan and team have worked so well and so hard to manifest and about which I feel a deep pride.
Sitting in Fred’s office a few weeks ago, just days after walking and talking with Brad through the streets of Boulder, I spoke about the cooking that seemed to be underway for me. “I’m marinating,” I said, “and I’m not sure what’s next. I like the trajectory that I’ve been on but there’s more out there and I’m not sure what’s next.”
Practiced as he is in getting to the point, Fred quickly responded: “You’re loving having an impact. You want to have more of an impact.”
Yes. I have loved my private client practice. I am blessed (there’s that word again) with having borne witness to folks’ personal work. I consider myself like Lou Gehrig: the luckiest man in the world.
And yet I do want more; I do want to touch even more lives and impact more folks.
So yet another transformation is occurring. Several months ago I asked a brilliant brand strategist friend of mine to think about the brand of Jerry (presaging, I suppose, this transformation). She’s come back with a series of recommended changes to the way I present myself, my services. A redesigned website and blog are being cooked up now. The hope is to have a more coherent message about my work and my offerings. I see it, if you will, as a redesign of the container to clarify and make sweeter the contents.
Cojourneo is a part of that…next week we officially launch my first paid workshop. It’s a version of the explorations I’ve done around surviving life in a startup. It feels like an important turning point in this process of becoming more impactful. We have a number of incredibly gifted-teachers and writers lined up to use the service to support their work. Check out the roster here and, if so inclined, sign up for one of the workshops. My upcoming workshop is nearly sold out.
In my Buddhist lineage we have a saying that we use when we describe someone coming into their own. The imagery is of a king sitting on their throne, a warrior sitting on their meditation cushion. We say “they have taken their seat.” My clients know I often encourage them to take their seat, to sit upright and unafraid and embrace life as it is.
I’m not certain what, if anything, will change. I suspect I’ll be speaking more, spending more in-depth time with more clients. In effect, perhaps, fewer “clients” but those that I have I will spend even more time with.
I wouldn’t be honest, though, if I didn’t add that this is coming with changes in my personal life…the inner one-third from which my lungta arises. With these changes, I foresee spending even more time in solitude reading and writing. Feeding, if you will, the parts of me that I use to help and feed others.
I have a new house in Boulder, for example. I hope to spend more time there. I’ll be working, of course (When you embrace the notion that work is simply another aspect of life, you don’t stop working until you stop living.). I imagine that these changes will also enable me spend more time with me. And that’s a precious gift to myself.
Lately at night and early in the morning I’ve been hearing this poem:
SONG OF A MAN WHO HAS COME THROUGH
Not I, not I, but the wind that blows through me!
A fine wind is blowing the new direction of Time. If only I let it bear me, carry me, if only it carry me!
If only I am sensitive, subtle, oh, delicate, a winged gift!
If only, most lovely of all, I yield myself and am borrowed By the fine, fine wind that takes its course through the
chaos of the world
Like a fine, an exquisite chisel, a wedge-blade inserted; If only I am keen and hard like the sheer tip of a wedge
Driven by invisible blows,
The rock will split, we shall come at the wonder, we shall find the Hesperides.
Oh, for the wonder that bubbles into my soul, I would be a good fountain, a good well-head, Would blur no whisper, spoil no expression.
What is the knocking?
What is the knocking at the door in the night? It is somebody wants to do us harm.
No, no, it is the three strange angels, Admit them, admit them.
I’m wondering what will happen when the rock splits. What will the angels say to me? Nevertheless, I’ll admit them.