Be careful what you dream of – it will probably come true.
The new Happyseeker Hub started as just a vision but became very, very real.
Last winter my mom offered to do a fun little exercise with me. Every few days we would send each other an email describing our dream lives as if we were experiencing them in the moment. She spent her time describing her farm – the scent of the herbs, the vibrancy of the flowers, the sociality of the chickens. The rules were loose so we were free to describe anything we wanted. She warned me though, if I spend enough time visualizing something it very well may come true.
I decided to focus on visualizing the growth of Pursuit. I described the interactions with my teammates, the flexibility of my schedule and the space we were filling as we expanded. Taking 20 minutes of my day a few times per week to share my vision of an ideal work life was invigorating. As a driven person and a visionary, I always have new ideas and new goals to meet. The sense of always pushing forward for more is a core part of who I am but can also be quite stress inducing.
The goal setting experiences I’d had before usually made me feel like I was eons away from where I’d like to be. I’d find myself limiting my vision because it felt too far to reach. Sometimes I’d hit a wall and simply run out of ideas of things I could do or I’d just pull up vague and prescribed goals – $100,00 a year, take a vacation, buy a new car. I would often feel uninspired because I couldn’t really see the details of these goals.
During my exchanges with Mom I felt just the opposite. Something felt so good about describing my goals as if I were telling a story. The details of unlived experiences felt so real – like memories. But that’s just the thing, I was visiting my future memories. I was conjuring magic within my mind, I was telling the universe that this is my life. It’s not the life I want, it’s the life I live.
Nothing changed right away – except for the relief I felt during my visualizations. I’m ambitious. I can literally feel the weight of my own desires pull down on me. I noticed that when I started to speak in the present tense about things I had yet to achieve I was actually feeling the success. My chest felt light and like it was expanding. My face would turn up into a smile. I could breathe deeper knowing I was okay.
I felt like I found a new miracle drug and I needed to make it available to others. My mom and I followed through with our exchange for the month but I was hooked and I needed more. I brought it to my accountabilibuddy sessions with Annika. We would exchange our visions, dip into a few moments of mindful meditation then create an action plan to make this dream come true. I also started the PowerUp group, so I could show more people how simple it is to escape the grip of stress, even if only for a moment (SIDE NOTE: you should totally come on Thursday).
At one of our PowerUps in early summer, I spent my time describing my ideal office space. My mind’s eye travelled to a light-filled space that was shared by other innovators. There were sweeping views of Lake Union, plenty of free parking and really easy to get to. It comfortably held my meetup groups and was a place I was proud to invite my clients to. The leasing fees were minimal and there was room to grow.
I left my vision there, only periodically revisiting it. My cynical/practical side was out of the conversation. I didn’t have to worry about how I was going to make this happen, I just believed whole-heartedly that this is what I would have.
After operating my business from a home office (read: living room) for 3 years, I’d started to grow tired of the lack of physical separation from my work. I could compartmentalize mentally with relative ease but my downtime space was literally my work space. Ten days ago, I decided to hop on to Craigslist to just check out what my options were.
Well, the gods were listening and decided to present me with a gift. The first place I inquired about hit every item on my list, plus 2 resident cats (BONUS). I’m writing this post from my new office space overlooking the floating homes and sailboats of Fremont. As I set up my office on Saturday, I couldn’t miss the Blue Angels whizzing by, even if I tried. There are thousands of square feet of south-facing deck space to soak up the light and admire the tree covered hills. I now have a place to host my meetup groups I have tried to think of a place that could be better and I simply cannot imagine what could exceed the abundance this place provides. No one has left this office in over 3 years but the one time I decide to look into it, it opens up. This, my friends, is not luck, not coincidence, not chance. It is pure magic.
I’ve learned my lesson. Be careful what you dream of – it will probably come true and come true with force.