A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about forgiveness. The experience of forgiveness that I described in the post felt as though it was the very last piece in the closure puzzle for a particularly difficult part of my life. When I finally hit publish on that article, I felt totally at peace.
In the article, I referenced my favourite book about emotional literacy. I love that book, and I welcome any chance to share it with the world. By pure coincidence, I received an email from the author of the book a day or two after I posted the article. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t a personal email. It was a bulk email to his mailing list, one of the sixty gazillion mailing lists that my multiple email addresses seem to have found their way to. The email invited people to send examples of their emotional learning experiences, for possible inclusion in the author’s regular newsletter.
My first thought was Wow, I could send him my forgiveness article! My second thought was Seriously, Deanne? Do you really think that a world renowned authority on emotions is going to have time to read your entire blog post? He would have been wanting people to send him a paragraph or two, not an entire post. Contacting him is a crazy idea.
As my little internal send-it-don’t-send-it tussle continued, I asked myself to pause. Then, I asked myself a question: For the sake of what do I want to send my blog post to this author? I realised that my reason was simply that I wanted him to know of the profound impact that his book and his work have had on me. Often in the coaching world, we have no idea of the impact we may have had on others, and I wanted him to know that his work had had an impact on me.
Great. If that is your reason then it doesn’t matter whether he replies. You have nothing to lose. Send him an email.
This led to another question: What emotion would help me, right now, to stop hesitating and send the author a link to my blog post? I decided on boldness.
In the past, I think I have had a negative view of boldness. I have thought of it in the same way as being brazen. However, boldness is really about taking action even though we may be experiencing uncertainty or fear of doing so. It is an emotion that allows us to make forward progress even though we may be feeling challenged in doing so. It helps us to initiate action.
So, I took a deep breath, and settled into boldness. Then I typed an email, telling this author that I loved his work, and that his book had contributed significantly to some learning around forgiveness. I provided the link, telling him that I was sure he wouldn’t have been expecting to receive an entire blog post, so I didn’t expect him to do anything with it.
With my moment of boldness over, I went to bed, assuming that I would probably never hear from him and at peace that I had absolutely nothing to lose. The next morning, I woke up to a reply! One of my favourite authors in the ontological world had replied to an email from me! That felt cool. We had a couple of email exchanges, the result of which was that we arranged a call with the author and some of my colleagues within the ontological coaching world. I was so excited.
Then we had the call.
Sometimes in life, we experience moments that appear as turning points. They are the moments where it feels as though there won’t ever be any going back. I had a few of these when I was receiving coaching. They were always incredibly special and often life changing. This call was one of those moments. For me, there is no going back from the call, and I feel as though my life is so much richer because of it. I finished the call in total joy and gratitude.
As I was reflecting on the beauty of the call later, five little words popped into my head, the same five words that had popped up continually throughout the call:
Thank goodness I chose bold.
- Where might “choosing bold” be helpful for you?
- If not boldness, what other emotion might be useful?
As a leadership and life coach, these points are all points that I am able to help people to explore. If you feel that it would be useful to HAVE A CONVERSATION WITH ME, please feel free to view my services on the Leading and Being website.