Written by Harmony Leanna Eichsteadt
October 17, 2018
The Amorphous, Messy Unknown: Entrepreneurship as a Spiritual Journey
Heart-centered business is about more than dollars and spreadsheets; it's a path of discovery and transformation.
Written by Harmony Leanna Eichsteadt
October 17, 2018

A friend of mine just quit a long career in teaching to explore the possibility of working for herself. It’s a huge, big, amazingly beautiful, life transition that will totally honor her heart, body, and soul.

And she’s feeling a little unsteady about this radical change in her day-to-day. How does she organize her time, track to-do’s, stay focused? How does she know this is the right choice? How does she measure accomplishments and success without external structures? Is she even cut out to be an entrepreneur? She’s feeling a little unsure and uncertain about all of it. She reached out for advice, and it got me started thinking about the number of times I’ve made a life transition like that. You know the kind that not only changes the surface details of your life but the entire way you see the world and yourself? Yeah. Intense.

When I first started working for myself I remember those feelings. Being unmoored and ungrounded. I had no idea how to structure or measure my days and weeks. I had existential thoughts like “what even is time?” In some ways, I didn’t even know who I was anymore. No one had prepared me for the intensity of the transition on a deep soul level.

Don’t get me wrong, I was also totally high on possibility and excitement and gratitude, AND I had no ground beneath me and no idea how to navigate this entire new reality.

After going through a few of these life-altering changes, I am (slowly) learning to give transitions the gravity they are due. Rather than rushing through them, or treating them as just a purely positive celebration, I’m recognizing that every change includes loss. It’s a death in a way and a rebirth. And those are traumatic, revolutionary experiences — even when they are our choice and we are over the moon about them.

I’m learning to give myself time and space and compassion to undo my old self, my old way of life. I’m learning the importance of giving space — wide, open, unstructured, scary, amorphous, messy space for the new world to be born. Because birth of any kind is messy and weird and scary and it needs space to happen in its own way, in its own time.

Yes at some point there will be structure required, but if we rush into it, we just replicate the same stuff we were trying to change from our old lives.

It may require examining our relationship to trusting ourselves (I must whip myself into action or I’ll never get anything done vs. I can be trusted to create because of my internal drive). It may make us question what “productivity” even means. We may have to regroup and recreate our physical space. Our relationships, clothes, media choices, words, desires, diets, and art may change in subtle or dramatic ways. Our sense of self is suddenly up in the air, and while those fundamental pieces that make us who we are will remain, we may have to let go of things we thought were fundamental to get down to our deeper truths.

We might go through the dark valley of excessive social media consumption, or we may find ourselves staring at the ceiling in utter boredom. We might read a bunch of books and then fail to implement all of them. We might try different strategies and struggle because they are not the right strategies for us and worry that maybe we are the ones who are fundamentally inept.

With breathing, with softness, with slowness, with curiosity, and with compassion, we will eventually rebirth ourselves into this new world, and discover the routines, structures, support, community that we want and need in this new paradigm.

In these moments of transition, I think about this Rumi poem and remind myself to allow for the quiet spaces that feel like dying. Because entrepreneurship is a spiritual journey. And the death of self is one of the most crucial pieces of initiation into that path. For my dear friend and for all of you taking the leap into an entirely new life, I hope this inspires you to take time for the transition, the grief, the unknown. To allow for rituals and transformation and messiness as you create your whole new self in this beautiful new world.

Inside this new love, die.
Your way begins on the other side.
Become the sky.
Take an axe to the prison wall.
Escape.
Walk out like someone
suddenly born into color.
Do it now.
You’re covered with thick cloud.
Slide out the side. Die,
and be quiet. Quietness is the surest sign
that you have died.
Your old life was a frantic running
from silence.
The speechless full moon
comes out now.

. . .

October 17, 2018
Written by Harmony Leanna Eichsteadt, our chief community officer, who loves everything about community building, heart-centered business, and advocating for those who need a voice.

Worth The Journey Blog

You’re running a heart-centered business. We share experiences and tips on how to make it sustainable.

October 17, 2018
Written by Harmony Leanna Eichsteadt, our chief community officer, who loves everything about community building, heart-centered business, and advocating for those who need a voice.

Worth The Journey Blog

You’re running a heart-centered business. We share experiences and tips on how to make it sustainable.

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