Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Moving forward... literally and figuratively

I have not dropped off the planet, died or completely slipped out of contact.

Over the past few months, I've made a conscious effort to spend less time on the computer and more time learning new things and trying to expand my horizons from this one little studio apartment to include the outside world a bit more.

I'm getting ready to move which takes considerable energy. The first step is getting nearly everything I own into a storage unit so that I won't be overwhelmed when I choose the place I will live. It will allow me to gradually empty out the storage unit. As always, it's about avoiding becoming overwhelmed and bringing out one of my worst qualities which is to ultimately hit the "f*** it" switch.

I've just begun Life Coaching classes which take 10 or so hours a week. This coming weekend will be from 4:00-9:00 on Friday evening and 8:00-4:00 on Saturday. Even though that is a lot of concentrated time, I'm really feeling "shackles off" as Martha Beck would say about these classes. All told, they will take until December to complete. After that, I will choose some new classes.

The classes are wonderful because they're providing me with an opportunity to learn something useful that I can share with the community. Thinking back, I can't tell you how much I would have loved having a "coach", someone to hear me out and help me develop a plan to create the life I would have preferred to live. Giving that to someone, particularly those who are unusual and not quite legitimized in this culture, is just the greatest way I can imagine to spend my time and energy.

There are too many people out there with an agenda and they try to cram people into boxes where they'll never fit and never find fulfillment. Unfulfilled people do not have the energy to give to their community. I was that way, too, and had nothing to offer because I couldn't even manage to build my own foundation. There are so many people who are in the same position.

I'm still reading lots of new books and have plenty of recommendations. Hopefully I'll be able to put some of them up here.

One in particular though.... "Quaker Summer" by Lisa Samson. This book changed my life. The two sisters in the book became "life coaches" of a sort for me and helped me to understand that all the philosophizing in the world, all the professions of faith, all the activity in the world, means absolutely nothing if it doesn't come from the heart and if it doesn't change the way we do things. If there's no passion behind our activities, thoughts and beliefs, they're hollow. And, as the book says, "there are too many exhorters in the world". There comes a time when we realize that all the shouting about how rotten the world is and how we think it should be different is just vanity. (Pardon me, Solomon.) The underlying message, for me, was "just do it".

Anyway, the book is cheap on Amazon and I highly, highly recommend it. It doesn't matter what religion you practice. The message is the same for all of us.

Enough for now!



Anonymous said...

Thanks for the catch-up with you. Missed your wisdom while you were away. Commendations for all that you've done in the interim.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Wow. You have been busy. I really admire your dedication to becoming more and better. We all want that, basically, but most of us lose our way or our impetus and settle for the convenient life, which is usually chosen by others. You are a terrific role model to many of us who need to feel authentic and don't quite know how in the midst of so many responsibilities.

I was particularly struck by your comment about not being quite legitimized in this culture. I have always felt like a secret misfit although I have excellent faking skills which allow me to seem to fit in, but are ultimately unrewarding. We could all benefit from a Life Coach who truly understand us as well as universal truths, and who could help us to fashion a life which would enable us to attain our highest personal potential. If we could do that, the community would automatically benefit in so many ways.

Thank you for an excellent, thoughtful post, Chani.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I'm very happy for you that you're moving in a direction that feels good to you. The book you recommend sounds interesting.

Maithri said...


Ive fel that same movement... towards deeper, fuller living...

May peace and love enfold you,


Leann said...

It is good to see you back Chani. I miss reading your insightful posts.

Good luck with the move. IT can be both an exciting and trying change.

I will definitely check out the book. It sounds like something right up my alley. I keep meaning to make a run to the library and have failed miserably. Perhaps this week.

Take care, god bless and have FUN.

painted maypole said...

good to see you hear again, and glad that you are doing well and taking care of yourself.


Mary LA said...

Good to see you back Chani

Catherine said...

Good to "see" you. :)

justme said...

so good to hear from you!

S said...

I'm so happy to hear this news!

meno said...

You have been busy. I like the idea of moving slowly and with thought, rather than packing up every thing and then wondering why you bothered when unpacking.

Angela said...

I was just commenting today on what a misfit I've always felt like! You know, Chani, you ARE a life coach. All your readers read for a reason - because they are enhanced by what you write, because they connect to your thoughts and because you are always honest without being brutal. This darn world. It can get kind of brutal and we all need lights to come to when the darkness threatens to descend. Which, by the way I am happy to report, mine is not at the monent! Good luck with all your packing. When's the moving day?

LittlePea said...

How wonderful for you Chani. I've been going through something similar myself. Moving can be very stressful but also a fresh start.

secret agent woman said...

Good for you!

And I'm going directly over to Amazon - "Quaker Summer" was obviously meant for me to read.

Akannie said...


Thanks for stopping by my blog. I love the Thai culture as well..somewhere inside me is a puzzle piece that fits there! I love the food, the beauty, the gentleness.
Haven't read too far into your posts, but had to laugh when I saw that you are considering the Pacific Northwest, where I lived for 20 years! Arcata is a heavenly place. I would move back there in a heartbeat...but for now I am back in my home of origin in the midwest, living out in the country and gardening and being near my son and grandchildren. I am going to be 57 in January. I lived about 4 hours north of San Francisco when I first lived in California...in a place where the temps were blazing as well.

What fun!!! I am so glad I found you!! (Or you found me--whatever serendipitous happened!) lol