There’s an undeniable moment when you realize your life is going through a chapter change.
At first it’s so gradual you may barely notice it. But as more time passes you realize your life is unquestionably evolving. What was, is fading into the past. And what’s opening, is enveloping your daily life in ways that make everything feel brand new.
There are endless resources out there discussing how to set large goals, break them into smaller action steps, and go about the daily tasks of strategically moving your life in a new direction. And it’s nice when at least parts of the change you’re in can be addressed that way.
But life isn’t always that neat and tidy. Not every change can be strategically planned. Sometimes the best you can do is push the first domino with the clarity of your intention, and from there let life take care of the rest of it.
But this doesn’t mean it has to be a scary cause for fear or drama. You just have to develop your ability to dance with life, steer with intention, and evolve with the flow.
Once upon a time I worked full time as a healer, counselor, and intuitive. Starting with my first psych job in a battered women’s shelter in 1998, I worked exclusively in the mental health and healing arts world for the next 12 years. How this looked changed over time, starting with social work and gradually evolving into working as an intuitive and holistic counselor, seeing 15-ish clients a week, teaching 2-3 intuition development classes a week, and leading periodic retreats on the weekends.
In 2010 I’d recently moved back to SF from LA. I had little cash, a desk job at a retreat center, and I felt uninspired to recreate my practice as it had been in LA. I felt burnt out. Like a chapter had run its course and I needed a change.
So I asked life to guide me, as it had before in other times. I did this by asking life to direct me to work that was more artistically oriented, physically active, outside, social, and that built upon my skill set.
This was the first domino and the only part of the change that I intentionally planned: sending a request out to life through my intention.
What life brought to me was inspiration to pursue photography.
At the time this sounded like a bad idea. I hardly needed another artistic hobby. But the idea kept coming so instead of fighting it, I started researching what photographers do, lifestyle, incomes, etc. After about 10 months of exploratory research I found portrait photography and I could immediately see how it could be used to artistically show women (and men) a positive reflection of themselves that can empower their sense of self. Jackpot!
Just as I got clear on this, I got fired from my desk job that was a large part of my monthly income. Initially I freaked out. Then I decided to take it more like a motivational push to stop researching photography, and to instead, step into it.
Two+ years later photography has deeply taken hold in my life. I still do coaching two days a week which I love, but well over half of what I do is with photography. This may make it sound like it was an effortless transition, which is definitely not the case. Each step forward has been (and is) a byproduct of challenging insights, making mistakes, and leaning into rigorous learning curves.
But it’s been so worth it because I got to see how powerfully life RESPONDS when we set intentions, let go of what it needs to look like, listen for how the muse guides us, and follow.
If you waved your magic wand and called in a new chapter, what qualities would you like it to have? Listen to your heart, be brave, and call it in!