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The Versions of You

 

Noah Kahan has a song lyric that is currently haunting me. When I tried to share it verbally I choked, realizing I could not actually say the words out loud. They were too charged.

 

It goes like this:

 

“I dream each night of a version of you; that I may not have but I did not lose.”

 

At first I thought my brain was throwing back to my ex husband, whose heart I quite possibly shattered to pieces over a decade ago.

 

But as the words tumbled around in my head day after day, I realized I was actually thinking about myself.


I was thinking about losing some unrealized version of myself.

 

A strange entanglement of meta cognition and parallel existence. Welcome to my brain.

 

Who is this woman that I never became and do not have to grieve? What is her life? Is she free? Is she happy? Does she wear long skirts, have braided hair, drive a fast car?

 

Does she know about me?

 

One of my favorite meeting check in questions is “what career would you have in a parallel universe?”

 

These answers are so fun. People usually pick something completely unrelated to their current business. They always know the answer. It comes quickly, effortlessly and with a smile.

 

CFOs who would be park rangers, Lawyers who are artists, CEO’s who would teach high school chemistry.

 

When I am lucky enough to coach these leaders we often revisit their parallel existence for deeper exploration.

 

It’s often prompted when people feel burnt out and tired. They are bored of living the same day over and over again. If you own a business you get it. The timeline of business ownership looks like a loopy loop roller coaster on a gradual incline. You’re moving up and forward over time, but the day to day is a recurring cycle. It repeats over and over again.

 

It can get boring. That’s when the thoughts about selling it all and buying a camper van set in. BTW…I’m all for this but sometimes it’s not necessary.😉

 

Instead of selling it all, how can we breathe life into our everyday experience.

 

We start with visualizing the version of you (that you may not have, but did not lose.)

 

Over several minutes with our eyes closed, we describe everything we see and feel about this person. Then we look for the trends. In the trends, we find a direction to move towards.

 

The result of this work is usually finding a new hobby, learning a new skill, shifting something ordinary in our lives into something a little extraordinary. Simple things that can be incredibly daunting.

 

Personally, I find that every 2 years I need to take on something new. I’ve started a micro business at our farm, become a fitness instructor, and taken a nutrition certification course.

 

All of these experiences align with the parallel version of me. When I allow myself to be both of these women, the result is a me that feels more whole and attuned to my unique strengths.

 

What version of you exists somewhere in the multiverse??? Are you compelled to bring this version into your life as it is today?

 

I’d love to explore this with you.

 

May you live and leadWell,

 

~E

 




 

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