I stopped at the grocery store early one evening to grab a coffee and some “snowzilla” provisions. Good thing I did, too, because I’m staring out the window at 13 inches of beautiful powdery snow.
As I made my way into the parking lot, I spied an open space about five cars up. I pushed the gas to approach as I turned on my blinker. Just as I start to turn into the space, something in front of me caught my eye.
A small car was tearing around the corner. The driver slowed down a smidge, made brief eye contact with me, made her choice, and pulled right into the spot I was about to occupy.
My jaw dropped open.
“Seriously?” I said out loud to no one but myself. I looked around. Yes, she really did that.
I sat there for a second with my foot on the brake and my blinker still blinking.
“Jack wagon.” This is only part of the the insult I breathed out.
And then, I looked to my right and spied another empty space. I switched my blinker, pushed the gas, and pulled in.
As I slid the gear shift into “park,” I was reminded of something important.
Don Miguel Ruiz has written a magnificent little book called “The Four Agreements.” Sitting in that parking space, I decided now was a brilliant time to live three of the four agreements:
2. Take nothing personally
3. Don’t make assumptions
4. Always do your best
(The first is be impeccable with your word.)
A few years ago, I would have been outraged and pissed off at the woman who “stole” my spot. I would have pissed going into the store. I would have been pissed going home. It’s taken me years to feel that emotion and deliberately move on to a different state of mind. It’s about choices. I deliberately choose to these days.
Maybe that woman was just a giant jerk. Or maybe she didn’t realize I had been about to pull into that spot. Maybe her toddler or dog (or both) were barfing her backseat and she needed a parking spot pronto.
Who knows? Who cares? All I knew was: I could let this interaction ruin my night OR I could decide to not take it personally and instead head inside for a steaming cup of coffee, some delicious groceries, and happily head home to my handsome husband.
I chose the latter.
“What’s your point, Angie?”
My point is: I, you, we have choices. You can choose anger. You can choose peace. You can choose confrontation. You can choose conversation.
More and more, I am realizing that my work is actually about noticing things for a living. Noticing how I act/react. Noticing how my clients act/react.
And then my mission (for myself and for my clients) is to invite change to happen. To invite change for the better. To invite change for peace. For happiness. For prosperity of the heart and Soul.
It’s work I love to do, partly because it requires slowing down and making some room to observe and realize.
And I LOVE making some room. Slowing down. Feeeeeling into something. It’s where magic happens. A fresh realization. An “Ah-Ha” moment. Clarity. Knowing.
Then life re-starts. It can be beautiful.
My hubby Nelson and I have made significant effort to make some room in our lives. I have book #4 almost ready – it’s all about making some room. Nelson and I are also cooking up something magical – a way to guide people to make some room in their own lives – time to breath, be outdoors, and observe themselves. Stay tuned for details.
In our “busy” world, making some room is an important life skill. It could mean the difference between an ugly confrontation in a parking lot or a lovely trip to the grocery.
Make some room,
Angie Mattson Stegall