She was the client of my dreams - a prominent ER doctor, also a Harvard grad, beautiful house, amazing art collection, three children in private school. “Wow,” I thought, “I’ve finally hit the big time!”
Or so I thought.
After two coaching sessions the ER doctor sent me an email politely indicating I wasn’t the best fit for her. I had been so proud of myself for landing this referral. Now I read her email and my thoughts spiralled downward, out of control. It was horrible - this feeling of rejection, anger, and disappointment - I felt like a wounded animal in a cage.
My first impulse was to reply right away and convince her to keep working with me. Basically, I wanted to prove that she was wrong and I was right. But I knew better. “Stand down, Anna, don’t reply until you have a clear perspective,” I told myself.
I know myself well enough that I can embrace these situations as learning opportunities. However, I have to admit it’s not that easy or fun when you’re in the thick of it.
How do I handle these moments? With my head, my heart and my belly.
My head, heart, and belly practice
My head, heart and belly practice is a way for me to identify the negative beliefs that cause me pain. Once I know these, then I can navigate the hurt feelings with insight and compassion.
First, I need to understand why am I so upset. I ask myself three questions:
- I ask my head “What do I think is true for me?”
- I ask my heart “What do I feel is true for me?”
- I ask my belly “What do I believe is true for me?
In answering these questions, I realize that I’ve thoroughly convinced myself I am “less than”. The ER doctor has rejected me; she is better, smarter, more credentialed, etc., which all means my work is probably invalid anyway. No wonder I feel like a wounded animal in a cage.
So now what? I know why I’m upset but how do I get past it?
I accept that part of myself that holds negative beliefs and I have compassion for it. I know it’s not the real truth about myself, but I accept myself for it.
While I may believe that I’m not worthy or I’m lesser than, deep down I know these are big fat lies that I’m telling myself. I also know these lies separate me from my highest self, from the truth that no human better is better than another, that all life is valid.
Wisdom in a Sequoia tree
A giant Sequoia tree provides life to about 80 different life forms. But if one life form doesn’t feed off of the Sequoia tree, it doesn’t make the tree “less than”. The two life forms just don’t fit together. That’s all it is. Judgements of “better than” or “worse than” are not truth. In the case of the ER doctor, she just wasn’t the right fit for me. Period.
After I realized all of this and came to accept myself, I finally felt free to reply to the ER doctor’s email with grace and dignity. And yes, it’s true, she did not continue. But get this: The day this all happened, I got three new clients!
If you are ready to see what life is offering for growth, please feel free to contact me.