Gatherings, meet ups, mixers, networking parties: great opportunities fly into my mail box every week. I yearn for connection. I want to meet my tribe, my team. Yes, I sign up. Thanks for the invite. When the date arrives interesting things happen each time: my dog coughs, I can't leave her alone. I need to respond to all these emails and it's too late to go. The power dress I wanted to wear has a stain!!! I am suddenly so tired, I have to sit down...
So I don't go.
Most probably it won't be great anyway and the people talk blah or are full of themselves. I will be bored. It's LA, everybody wants something, everybody has an agenda. How many times did I see eyes glaze over at Hollywood parties when I revealed that I wasn't a producer, casting agent or influential somebody behind the scenes? The worst was a book release party recently; first the writer who had personally invited me, didn't even notice the birthday present I brought her and basically ignored me. I already bought her book. I didn't have a podcast. When I walked through the dark, dingy rock'n roll space where people chatted eye in eye, sipped on their beer or stared at video screens nobody noticed me. Not one glance of acknowledgement. I was a ghost. The surreal feeling of being utterly invisible made me run back to my car. The party wasn't good? asked the valet. No. It was gruesome. I felt gruesome.
We are all burnt kids and let passed experience structure our Now. Experience follows expectations.
I tried to convince myself halfheartedly; letting go of the past didn't help. Sent my ego to Mars wasn't quite working. The mantra of "just give" felt silly. The problem was that I wasn't ready. I didn't have anything to show, tell or give. What if people asked what I do? I'm developing things? That's lame.
I should make this time really productive instead. I'll write. I'll finish a chapter. I'll be somebody to reckon with in no time. You'll see.
I flip through my notes: When you are really passionate about something, you do it, no matter what. You don't just try - you don't run the other way when it gets uncomfortable. My notes don't lie. My notes actually slap my face. My kickass tagline is "summon your powers."
I yearn for connection. I want to meet my tribe, my team.
When I wake up 5 minutes later I am in the car. No prettying up, no endless rummaging through the wardrobe. My powers summoned me; I don't even know how I got behind the wheel. Just drive! At least I'm wearing my tiger booties.
Manhattan Beach is far and it's stress time on the 105. I make it just in time. Proudly, as I was always the one who came late to control the situation. The first person I run into into is model-gorgeous host Alicia Dunams. Damn, I should have done my doll up... She's sweet and has her arms wide open. Okay, so I don't have to look like a socialite. Nice. Maybe this is not like those other times. I had uncluttered part of my life, bye bye negative mirror people, and was practicing to be receptive for the positive stuff of life for weeks.
A couple dozen people hang out in the slick little conference room of the Shade hotel, busy talking, laughing, hugging. Nothing changes when I enter. No ripple of my presence makes them look up. God, I knew it. It's the same thing like always. I don't know anybody, I am on my own, nobody sees me.
Hey, so nice you could come!! I feel manly arms reaching out from a polished black and freshly pressed jacket pulling me onto an impressive chest: the featured author of the night came over to greet me. Chris Lee? Swell to meet you. I read your book... (half) giving, integrity, great concepts...
When he's onto the next happy attendant, I hold my breath - and there's Nadine taking his place. A sparkling girl under 30. She wants to know who I am. She could be my daughter but age has disappeared. She looks at me and sees me. Her integrity sits on her sleeves. When somebody connects with our essence, nothing else matters; it's a fearless, ageless, timeless space. When somebody sees us for who we are time does not exist, all there is is Now. Very cool, Eckhard, I got it.
Life's a lab with lots of experiments which can go right or wrong. Who cares. The important thing is to observe, be vigilant and learn.
Chris Lee involves the group with questions: what are you grateful for, what do you take for granted. I got a brain freeze. I plan to be on a TED stage next year and watch myself puzzled: I feel fear to speak up. I'm afraid of judgments. I'm too different. Ego. Control. Critique. Help. This can't be happening.
Chris looks at me. Smiles sweetly. "What are you proud of?"
"That I brought my son through college. After he left it took me three years to get over myself but I finally quit that survival job which killed my spirit. I do what I love to do. I write. My book title says it all: from grumpy bitch to happy witch..."
There it was. It was out there. My truth of the moment.
Applause, laughter. They all seem to find this very cool. Great title, Alicia says.
They heard me. The door was open: I watched myself letting go of judgments. I let the moments of "really?" melt away when grandiose statements filled the room: I am the master of manifesting, I am the best communicator, my visions change the world... Nope, they weren't full of it. People shared what they are without pride or agenda, just bathing in their happiness and realizations. If people are mirrors I am all that?
Nadine, like me, just jumped into the unknown to follow her deepest desire. There's no chatter in my head anymore. I listen to her story completely present. I love how brave she is. Nadine takes a video of us and posts my first snap chat. My authentic happy, giggly self bursts out of my smile. I look at the picture and am so excited that this is me.
What I went away with is:
Follow the signs. When we have a deep desire and life answers with an invitation we better have our eyes open and take it. Life's a box of chocolates...
To be open is the vibe to walk with. Watch and learn, watch and let go of our bull. Constantly, instantly. When we expect people to be full of it, we are full of it: of expectations, judgments and fear. Our beliefs are our prisons; the prison is safe but the world outside is so much more exciting.
It is much more rewarding to be interested in people then hoping that people are interested in me.
Giving is an expression of self love. We do not need a finished website, business plan, books and million dollar businesses to be somebody. We don't need to give money, connections, stuff. We are good enough. When we give what we love about ourselves we light the fire in others. In others we see a different us; doors open and the world looks different.
It's like holding a flashlight into the Quantum soup and seeing a reality that was always there and the flashlight is - our uncluttered self.
Without uncluttering our beliefs, our reality won't change.
We are living, breathing projectors of our inner movies. If you want to see a comedy rather than a drama you better make up your mind.
Nadine is my muse of May; a girl with her heart wide open. She held up the coolest mirror and invited me to see my sleeping beauty. The grumpy bitch is dead. Long live the happy witch.
What can I give to you?