Surrender, and you’ll find that the real Business of Life does not lie in your hands, but in the hands of Life.
There’s a time when learning the tricks of business development is important; when it’s wise to set a few goals, create a vision, set up a website and social media presence, and learn strategies from those more experienced in commercial enterprise.
And then there’s a time when the rules of business must be set aside, for now you hear Life calling you more clearly, more urgently than ever, saying, “You’re ready. You’re working for us now. That period of your life is over!”
Entwined in these words is a recognition that you’ve done the work. You have, through years of deep self-reflection, healing and many courageous “Dark Nights of the Soul”, learned to bow to Life. You have created enough space inside for Mystery to turn you into its own doing, to be used as a vehicle of service to conduct its Business through.
By first taking care of your personal business you have readied yourself for that which is far from personal—the Business of Life.
Also entwined in these words is the insistence that you forget about money, and the cultural obsession that you must “pound the pavement” to “get” it. To forget fancy, manipulative marketing strategies, forget about having the sexiest website and glossiest, polished catch phrases. To forget much of what you’ve learned about business development because so much is fear- (lack) based, and the Business of Life is not in the business of fear most tend to.
In setting these old stories aside, you are agreeing to hand your business over in full. “We’re in charge now. Not you!”
And when you lose yourself in financial concerns you may hear laughter ring across the Cosmos. “Money? You actually think you need to worry about money?” To the infinitely abundant Cosmos, financial security is a myth, an old and deeply flawed human story.
“Understand, you are working for us now! Your job is to pay attention and follow, to listen carefully and tread with patience. You’ll know what to do when time.”
Now abundance chases you rather than the other way around! You’ve made yourself a clear enough vessel to receive it.
I’m not speaking about the “Law of Attraction” or New Age fluff. What I’m speaking about is something with a bit more grit, something more in-the-bones, a full-bodied living experience. I’m speaking of surrendering to such an extent that you feel Life’s fierce insatiable desire to use you, to gobble you up in its Business, reverberating through your cells. I’m speaking of feeling an inexorable, undeniable pull to commit to service on behalf of something ancient and unfathomable.
From this receptive state you are not in control as much as you once thought. You don’t know the lay of the land as Life does—what’s needed, where to go, what to learn, who’ll most benefit from what you have to offer, how they will benefit. You don’t know, until you do. You know parts, pieces, you have a general sense; but the larger view is only revealed to you bit by bit, when you are ready to take the next step.
Humble uncertainty is the ticket, bowing ever more deeply, a true servant to Mystery.
So thankfully, you give way to the “marketing agent” infinitely more powerful than any website spreading word, to the “business manager” more shrewd than any you could hire. Indeed, officially you are a faithful follower, an employee of—a servant to—Life!
Trusting and relaxing
By this point you may already have spent years cultivating, refining and sharing your gifts. And you may already have laid a business foundation such as a website, client network, procurement/operations framework, Youtube channel and/or social media presence. Wonderful! Keep them. This was an important foundation for you to build. Assuming Life builds upon it (which usually it does) it will find use for these gifts and tools of service.
But, again, you are being asked to remember this is not your business anymore; and to therefore let go of any belief that you must grip these gifts and tools as you once did, that they are the driving source of your abundance. They may have been at one time, and, of course, they may still play a vital role. But you now know, you feel without a doubt, that it is the invisible hand of Life that is the primary source leading your gifts and tools forward.
When Life leads, the roads are much more unpredictable and sinuous, and so any unhealthy, fear-based gripping only keeps you in control and along linear pathways, unavailable to what wants to happen. Again, it’s about bowing further down, making way for the mercurialness of Life to take you where you’d never have thought to look.
You, therefore, are being asked to be mindful of how you market this Business, how much is necessary—to be mindful not to chase, not to push. To be careful of temptations from so-called seemingly conscious “marketing experts”, the flashy ones, the quick-fix ones, the ones that make you work harder than you need to; the ones that advise on how to build a business separate from the ineffable organizing intelligence of Life; the ones that essentially teach how not to trust life (especially those promoting manipulative strategies, like having a countdown on a website to sign up for some service).
I hear the Cosmos laughing again…
From this surrendered state, whatever marketing or business development efforts you employ (and some are obviously useful) are done not to take something from Life (a fear- or separation-based response). No longer do you believe what you were taught. That old story of separation is over. There is nothing to force. Rather, your efforts now arise out of feeling intuitively called to spread the good word, to give of yourself, to generously share your gifts, to reach people simply because doing so brings you immense joy (a joy- and trust-based response).
How much does society teach us to lead from joy, simply for joy’s sake?
You spread the word with hands loose, a twinkle in your eye, a child’s playfulness at heart, following the intuitions and signals as they arise (and some may point you to use a particular marketing strategy). You are unencumbered by ideas of lack, of “not enough”, of competition, by the belief instilled in you when young that you cannot trust Life.
You relax more because you trust. You trust because you are relaxed. Trust and relaxation are two sides of the same coin. You are more willing to take risks because you are less attached to outcomes, less concerned with doing it “right”. You know Life has your back. You feel it. It’s simply done.
Personally, I spread word of my services by writing. I love this creative expression and joyfully share my poetry and articles on my newsletter and social media. I spread word by creating memes on Photoshop. I do this because putting words to pictures and taking those pictures is something that lights me up; it’s an artistic expression I love to inspire others with. I spread word by connecting with various clients about my travel schedule. I do this because I love my clients and love what I can offer them and want them to know that I will be traveling close by. (I don’t shove things down their throat. I respect their inbox and time. They’ve opted in for regional updates.) I spread word by having a subscriber box for my newsletter on my website. I do this because I want people to benefit from my material (not because I need them to!).
I act on the impulse to convey what my heart aches for, what I long for people to know, what I see the world silently and overtly crying for. I act on my playfulness, the mischievous Trickster in me desiring to stir the pot of conformity, challenge conventional worldviews, and invite new, empowering perspectives. I act on the dreaming instinct, sensing where my imagination calls me next, the imagination Life speaks through.
I don’t try to be anyone when putting myself out there or communicating to clients. I regularly tell people that I am no different in front of my clients than I am in front of family and friends. There is no such thing as a “professional” me. Just me—funny, eccentric, intense, sad, curious, excited, puzzled, frustrated, passionate, kind, etc. And people feel this, the approachable human in me, and it’s essential to why they hire me.
As you live less separate from Life, you will find it harder to separate personal from professional.
Co-creating the Garden
My marketing efforts are not really about “marketing” per se, but about joyfully creating—creating connection, creating messages, creating invitations, creating beauty. I spread word much like how one creates a garden. Joyfully I spread seeds to blossom, trust Life to flower what it will, and know the fragrances will find those who need them. Life knows who those people are, not me.
I’m very aware of why I choose to spread word of the Business in a particular way. Am I coming from fear, a “have-to”, because I think I “should”, because others are doing it? Am I trying to make the Garden grow, to force time? I’m regularly checking in on myself, and if I’m not clear on my intention, I don’t act.
As word of my gifts are spread and sowed, Life then creates from my actions, and a Garden flourishes. Co-creatively, in our mysterious dance, pieces come together, opportunities flower.
Rising in the morning I’m excited about what will show up in this Garden—what new joyful opportunities will present themselves; what wonderful and interesting people will I meet; what places will I be called to next; what dreams will conjure up in my mind? I live in surprise, grateful, each day unfolding me deeper into Mystery, each day further shattering what I held true about business, and Life.
This, of course, does not mean I don’t have my sour days, times of confusion and frustration (often technology-based), moments when I get afraid, when I doubt (when I want to throw my computer out the window!). That too is part of Life, part of the human experience. But, certainly within the context of having faith in the Garden, these days have become far less frequent. And when there is a lull in abundance, when seeds are not quite sprouting as I’d thought, I have learned to trust more than ever. I’ve learned to trust the down periods as much as I trust the ups. Just like the tides, the coming and going of things, I know there is wisdom to the unfolding rhythms of Life. And if looked upon carefully, the down is much needed—an up in disguise!
The real Business of Life
The success we seek lies in surrendering and serving. That is true “success”!
The more we heal and surrender the more we live this fluid truth in our hearts. We fall into an intimate dance with Life, pulled ever closer into its arms, its lead, its mysterious ways; one where we see ourselves as helpers helping Life fulfill its sacred promise.
With ever greater clarity the work the world desperately needs is felt and seen—healing, connecting, reconciliation, grieving, gentleness, empathy, listening, kindness, loving; considering the whole, not just the individual, the Self, not just the self; living more harmoniously with Nature, as Nature. We understand that this is the real Business of Life, certainly not the business we were taught in school or on television.
We see more clearly that business is meant to serve Business. As entrepreneurs and enterprise continue to become conscious and caring, which so many are, they will continue to align their visions accordingly. There will be continued sensitivity to Gaia, to her needs, an awareness that we are not separate from the green and blue organism we temporarily live on; that we are inextricably linked to this living body, that it is an extension of our nervous system, our heart, our soul.
And as schools become more conscious and caring, they will emphasize the Business of Life rather than solely and blindly conveyor-belting kids into the consumerist, fear-based business world without any sense of the larger Agenda at hand. They will attune to how the Business of Life already expresses itself through the purity of children, through their natural openness and native gifts. Knowing this, they will not push a child unnecessarily, much like how I don’t push the Garden. Rather, they will allow room for the child’s soul to lead, to come out and play, to blossom in time.
Beyond the personal
The Business of Life is not something any human can “manage” on their own. It’s not something we can address with our wily ruses, our erudite business strategies (although, again, strategies can be effective tools of service), by simply shifting pieces of the pie around (such as reductive or political approaches). It’s not something we can “figure out”, for it’s not our business! It’s not personal. It can’t be!
Hence, the Business of Life!
Just turn on the news; look closely at your community. The problems are too big, too incredibly complex, too never-ending for the limited human mind to solve. Solutions employed by the human intellect, and without guidance from Life, can be dangerous, and tend to lead to a cavalcade of new, unexpected (and expected) problems. Politicians prove this regularly. And so does Big Pharma.
This holistic world-work—the Business of Life—can only be done with the love, wisdom and organizing intelligence of Life working through us. By going into our darkness, clearing our blocks (including trauma), owning our gifts, opening our hearts and purifying our nervous systems—by first taking care of our personal business and becoming as we were when young children—we discover the impersonal Light on the other side, the Light the dark world is waiting for. We discover the Business of Life waiting to be surrendered to, wanting our help, the Life dearly longing to take us in full for its own covetous use.
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Check out Vince’s book: Wild Empty Spaces ~ Poems for the Opening Heart