Updated: Dec 10, 2022
There's a crucial chapter missing in the story we are told about manifestation: the aching of transformation. The awkward period between the "old guard" and the "new way" - the pimply adolescence of self actualization, if you will. The comfort blanket of how things were is no longer keeping you warm and feeling secure. But the new scenery hasn't settled in yet - in fact, you are hardly sure where you are going to land.
Will you even like it as much as you thought you would? The invisible thread that pulled you towards a change feels more ephemeral than ever as you are forced to make tangible shifts in your world to forge the new reality. Suddenly, something as sweetly magical as intuition may require abrupt changes and acts of willfulness that could even feel tinged with aggression. No one tells us that "not settling" and refusing to undermine our deepest desires may require a chorus of profoundly soul rattling and destabilizing NO's.
When sober-curious, you are not shown the amount of No's you will have to say in social situations to a culture that normalizes drinking. When choosing to no longer eat factory farmed animals, you are not prepared for the amount of unwanted confrontations or attempts at persuasion you will face by those eager to defend their own eating practices. And when instilling new boundaries in a relationship or friendship, you are not given a tour of the painful reactions you will encounter in the person you care for who may not share your perspective as you change.
For the last few years, I have spoken about being guided. I have based all of my work and much of my writing around this idea. And I would say that up until this point, except perhaps when I quit a lifelong vocation in acting last year, being guided largely constituted friendly changes and aligned, generative actions. This ranged from creative impulses, bold pings, taking chances at work and in public exposure etc. Essentially, the only cost of my following the internal/divine guidance was the fear of failure as I branched out creatively and spiritually. And the occasional awkward social conversation about my evolving consumption habits or unconventional professional life.
Recently, however, I have graduated to advanced level value alignment challenges (not as fun as it sounds). It was the same thing that motivated me to quit weed in January 2020. I was trying to manifest major professional upgrades and I scanned my life, asking: "where am I still settling?" "What could be blocking my success?" And the crutch of my dependency blared as the sacrifice I needed to make to the gods. So I did and it catapulted me to my next level of growth.
I am in a similar period now. But this one has been more heart wrenching than even my separation from a longstanding addiction. The very roots that have kept me feeling nourished, secure and grounded involving home, family and love are at stake .
This part of the post has been modified from the original version I published two days ago. Why? Because it spoke about this part of my life like it's in the past tense which is not an entirely honest depiction of what is happening at the heart and soul level. The truth is it's in the full midst of the manifestation growing pains. And the future is uncertain. Isn't it always?
In September I had to step back from my eight-year relationship and leave our shared home over potentially differing perspectives of the future. Not due to lack of love, respect or kindness. Nor a lack of intimacy, trust or attraction. No fighting and no disrespectful tones. And despite the most beautiful home, circle of friends and a shared love for our dog that would rival any epic romantic tale. That is what made it so hard to make a move because, in essence, it was risking an enormous amount of beauty, pleasure and peace now for an idea that is relatively abstract: the future.
As someone whose work is to help people manifest their aligned lives, and who revisits these visions every day in my morning routine, I have put in an incredible amount of time to refining my wants and needs and really painting myself a picture of the world I am trying to create. And I kept hoping to draw my beloved into this image but something in him resisted it. It was not his vision - at least he wasn't sure that it was to this point. And to be fair, most people don't spend an hour every morning figuring out: where they want to live, what they want their family to look like, who they want to become, the work they want to be doing, how their ideal daily routine looks etc.
I have always been a bit obsessed with this kind of imagining. I have a clear memory of being on the train as a kid with my mom going to Halifax and I suggested that she and I each do a page of (semi-fictional) writing describing what our ideal days would look like from morning to night. I used to wish the Truman Show was a real phenomenon so I could be exposed to how people lived in every nook and cranny of their day to day existence, from the humdrum to the sublime. No wonder I got completely absorbed into Instagram where I could finally get a glimpse of the many different ways of living that are potentially available to us (even if they are shown through a filter). If we are meant to do work as adults that resembles what fascinated us as children, I can certainly say I have this aspect covered.
And I have been so fortunate to have a partner for nearly a decade who completed the earthier and practical side of our yin yang. While I dreamed of possibility and aligned risk, his unwavering professional discipline, emotional support, organization and strategic thinking kept our ship sailing in the right direction and provided my soul the stability it needed to soar creatively. I have been with partners more spontaneous and dreamy than I and it was not right for me. But perhaps as I got to play in fishy waters, it required my boyfriend to be the sturdy rock. And he didn't find the same time and space to dream.
Out of respect for this person so dear to me and our relationship, I kept this life altering experience out of my normally transparent sharing on this medium and social media. As my partner himself has always joked, I am like a chinchilla when it comes to honesty - if I can't say the truth, I lose my hair from stress (metaphorically speaking, though lately I have noticed I have been losing more hair). Clients were beginning to ask me why the backgrounds of our online meetings were not my usual setting and some people following me online even started to ask if I was okay, likely sensing my newly surfaced vulnerability.
So while things are still unfolding behind the scenes and the outcome of this trial separation is uncertain, I finally feel like I need to clear the air and share my experience. Because this is not a case of anyone doing anything wrong. It's two people that deeply love each other who are clarifying the futures they authentically want to build and hoping they can genuinely intersect. And if they don't, it's about living with those painful consequences from a place of grace.
This is the aching liminal space of evolution. I am grateful that this painful period of transformation is something I have consciously chosen instead of it creeping up on me from the shadows. I am deeply cognizant that the largest challenges in my life at the moment result from acts of courage and self obedience. That's lucky. But that doesn't make the confusion and sadness any less thick.
So as always I share my story for my own sake but also for you to know that when you are "putting into practice" the guidance you are receiving and the aligned actions you are being led to, if it feels terrifying, destabilizing and rife with loss, it doesn't necessarily mean you are doing something wrong. Change may be desired but it doesn't mean it's comfortable.
When you change out of your pyjamas on a January morning, the cold air that hits your naked skin may feel abrasive and rude. By the time you put on a nice outfit for the day, you may step into your power and feel beautiful. Yet those moments of transition may feel like they take forever and the transmutation can be jarring, raw and deeply vulnerable. And what you're stepping into may even temporarily blur out of focus.
"Why am I doing this again?" "Is it even worth all this?" "Wouldn't it be easier to submit to how things have always been and keep the peace?"
This is why trust is often referred to as a muscle. When I am instructing my clients on how to put spiritual guidance into practice in their own lives, I always advise to start small. Call on your guides or intuition when ordering off a menu or choosing a date for a gathering. If you don't build resilience through those day to day decisions, it will be so difficult to stand firm in your intuitive guidance when your whole stability is at stake, as mine is today.
I am heading to Costa Rica towards the end of the month. I will travel as a small seed knowing only that I am honouring my desires, vision and integrity at this time, without any guarantees where that will lead. One thing I know is that there is freedom in listening to the inner voice and grace in commitment when we put both feet on the plate.
My incarnation cross in Human Design is the Right Angle Cross of Rulership which Jenna Zoe describes as "To master your life and model that for your wider community." While I have not mastered all aspects of my life to the level I desire whether that's my home, family, finances, career, lifestyle etc -- what I do hope to model for my community is integrity, honesty and faith in one's guidance. My morning routine course is called Living by Divine Guidance because it's not something you just practice during a morning ritual, it's a way of engaging with reality interwoven into everything you do. I am passionate about how we make decisions, take leaps of faith and exercise our intuition. So we can not regret the chances we didn't take because I don't know about you, but the only regrets I have are about the things I didn't do and not the things I did.
I hope you will join me in the recognition that the fear and uncertainty you are feeling in the bold moves you are making to honour your self and your soul's becoming are not in vain, because they are a part of who you are now and the you that is watching it all will never forget how you took a chance on them.