Whistling My Way into the Zone (and a Pair of Free Shoes)
The other day I was in my car whistling. It was seriously solid whistling. Of course, I was completely aware of my driving, but I was also totally into whistling.
As an introspective soul, I realized that I was in the zone. You know, that mental state where you are fully immersed in an activity and feeling totally energized and involved.
I was very curious about why I was whistling right at that moment. While I did inherit a whistling gene from my Dad and there was a good tune on the radio, why was I so absorbed in whistling just then? What was going on? How did I get there? How was it helping me?
(On a side note, getting curious and exploring a feeling or action is a good habit. When you get curious, you gain a deeper awareness that helps you to grow. Hmmm, that might be a good subject for my next blog.)
Anyway, back to my whistling. Let’s do a little analysis of that zone moment.
First, what was going on? Essentially, I had a general feeling of joy and peace because everything was going my way. Opportunities and good stuff were just dropping in my lap. Some things were big and others small.
- I had just received an email from BOGS, my favorite boot company telling me that although they couldn’t fix the ripped tab off my left boot, they were given me a gift card to buy a new pair of shoes.
- The day before I received two emails from executives who had heard about my work and were looking for executive coaching services and team development.
- Earlier the same week, I found the most perfect location on Seneca Lake for my Executive’s Retreat on exactly the October date that I wanted.
New shoes, new clients and a new perfect location. It was like winning the trifecta.
During that whistling zone moment, I had a question running in my head: “What have I been doing differently that has me in this place of goodness?”
What is different? So often that is the crucial question. In fact, it’s one of the questions people often explore on the DIY Professional Retreat that I designed to help people get answers in their life. I’d be happy to send you materials so you can go on this retreat yourself.
So here’s what I realized was different: I’ve been intentionally keeping my thoughts in check. (And that’s not an easy thing to do considering we have on average 6,200 thoughts a day.)
When I was feeling stressed around the variety of focuses in my life like family, kitchen renovations and business, I stopped to shift my mindset. I remembered that it was me – and me alone – who set these intentions at my own DYI Professional Retreat. That’s when I was in the zone, my most relaxed and intentional state paying attention to clues my Inner Coach provided for what I would accomplish this year.
When I was questioning whether I had set goals too high and doubted whether I could accomplish them, I reminded myself that the “how” always presents itself when I stay focused on the expectancy of those goals.
When I was thinking that I was not doing enough, I paused and remembered that this was an old habit that has burned me out in the past. Instead, I remembered the power of self-care.
When I was attempting to control something that was not mine to control, I paused and breathed in my favorite mantra — Trust and Surrender — over and over until I felt a sense of letting go and peace.
My curiosity was satisfied about my whistling moment. I realized that the practice of keeping my thoughts in check puts me in the flow, like being in a lazy river and allowing it to take me gently upstream as opposed to fighting against it and expending energy and feeling resistance.
When my head goes down the path of worry, control or negativity, I am in resistance mode where nothing good happens. Instead, I have the ability to switch my thoughts to trust, surrender, belief and gratitude.
That’s what keeps me in the zone and the place of expectancy for what I want in my life. Somehow, it just manifests itself. Sometimes in big ways like a new client, and sometimes in small ways like a groovy new pair of free shoes.