Missing the Boat

The power of words never fails to thrill and stun me. I started reading a paperback last night and finished it off this morning as a break from working on half a dozen coaching projects; by the end, I was sobbing into balls of sodden tissues, my throat aching, my eyes stinging as I sniffed back and swallowed tears.

If I’d read the blurb more carefully, I would have got to the bit where it was described as a ‘tearjerker’. I usually avoid anything labelled ‘heart-rending’, ‘harrowing’ or a ‘tearjerker’. Because of my age, I’m already at the mercy of the mood swings my young son calls ‘horrormoans’ – weeping one minute at anything that involves bereft parents then snapping murderously at my kids the next.

Tiredness doesn’t help, but it’s my own fault I ended up in bed today, an exhausted, frazzled, biscuit-eating mess – like a small child who’s had too much excitement all at once and can’t cope.

I committed a real coaching sin after I passed Step 2 of IAC certification; I didn’t give myself time to bask in the glow of passing before I moved on to a flurry of activity and exciting new projects that answered the question “So what next?”. I’d hooked up so many of my Big Picture dreams to becoming certified that suddenly I found myself working from morning till midnight, desperate not to see the energy and momentum dissipate.

The coaching world often leaves me with a sense of anxiety, feeling like I’m about to miss the boat without even knowing what the boat is. But now I have the feeling that if I don’t act soon to create multiple income streams based on what I can offer as a certified coach then somehow my training and IAC-CC  designation will simply evaporate.

I love coaching one-to-one as well as coachwriting, but I often feel like I’m treading water, trying to keep up with business trends, networking, marketing strategies, web building techniques, blogging and multiple streams of income simply to stay afloat. Hard work doesn’t scare me and I truly believe that marketing can be approached as a form of coaching; I also believe that we attract what we need if we believe in ourselves and in our products but sometimes the ratio of coaching related work to actual coaching just feels overwhelming.

So too are the paradoxes – passions pulling me apart like dogs yanking on a choke leash till I can barely breathe: wanting to contribute to the family income but spending less time with my family and being less present than ever before; working at home to follow the principles of ‘right livelihood’ yet becoming more of a mediocre marketer than a masterful coach; loving my homelife coaching yet shelving my own creative projects and clutter-clearing to find clients I can help with theirs.

Getting the balance back and dovetailing my goals would be smart, I know, but another symptom of being out of whack with myself and permanently attached to a computer is the dialogue my ego has with my Wise Best Self: “I hear you, WBS, but I’ll get back to loving the details just as soon as I finish reading this email about reducing the time I spend reading emails.”

The main character in the book I read worked so hard at building a business to provide for her children, using innate skills discovered through tragedy, that she missed sharing the wonder of their childhood with them and never fully appreciated her husband till it was too late to tell him.

Maybe it’s OK to miss the boat if it’s the wrong boat.