How to Heal

We Have Our Heading!

Once upon a time, I knew everything. “I would never have chemo,” I declared. It was one of those moments of personal prisonification during which, upon reflection, you realize that the distant sound you heard, like the gentle swish of glass shards spreading across a marble countertop, was the reverberation of God’s laughter at your plans. That which I perceived to be true for me turned out to be a story I was telling myself because I was attached to a certain identity. What was really happening was that I was making a clear announcement to the universe about the exact place where my deepest healing would need to begin, or, alternatively, where I could choose to die on the cross of my ego.

When I checked myself into the hospital and admitted to the radiology tech, in the delirium of anesthesia, that “hospitals are places of disease and death, but I don’t know where else to go,” it turned out that I was discharging the sparks of annihilitory collision with reality, and speaking the opposite of what was true, because I did know, finally, where to go. The answer was within. I had to abandon the belief that I was in charge of what was without. When I went to the hospital that day, it wasn’t out of fear. It was in exhaustion, certainly, but mostly, it was with relief.

When you feel that feeling, of something held long and tight releasing you into the great river of the Tao, and you surrender to it, you are finally on the journey home. I was, at last, so tired that I couldn’t muster the energy of my intellect to override my intuition anymore, and so the faint stirring of my inner compass was no longer drowned by the static of my monologue.

The magic compass in The Pirates of The Caribbean doesn’t point North. It points to the treasure. But North, being cardinal, can be confirmed and corroborated by outside authorities. Because it can be so terrifying to take full responsibility for our choices, we pick some authority and hitch our identity to it, and then, as long as we stay in that club, even if our actions cause us harm, we can congratulate ourselves on having maintained our convictions. But are they really ours? Or is it someone else’s North, driving us to override the guidance within? Are we missing the opportunity to set a course to our treasure, because someone else is telling us they know where our North should be? How can we know?

There is a way, and it’s available to everyone. It doesn’t require a guru or a sudden spiritual awakening. All you need to do is look with clear eyes at where you’ve been. You are a master of creating exactly what you have right now. This life, this moment - everything you’ve done up until now has brought you here. When you understand where you are, what it feels like, and why, you will discover that you HAVE had a clear priority, and pursued it, and made it manifest. If where you are does not feel like where you want to be, fabulous! That means it’s time to get clear on what the priority has been, and to determine what you wish it to be.

A thousand years ago, I was a junior equity analyst in a small financial firm. From eight year old me sitting on the floor on Fridays watching "Wall Street Week with Louis Rukeyser,” hanging on every word from the sharp sell-side ladies in their smart suits and perfect hair, through analyzing game theory and “The Money Game” while rebalancing private portfolios during my independent study project in high school, to very-nearly taking a job as an assistant to a financial advisor who was a predatory sleazeball (special thanks to my internship mentor at the time, who said, “don’t take that job, he just wants to sleep with you.”), all I wanted to do was work on Wall Street. There, I thought, I would find the ideal combination of glamorous affluence and the harmonious humming machinery of cooperative, peaceful, and free exchange.

Michael Lewis, in “Liar’s Poker,” depicts a world of self-serving, corrupt, arrogant, and hierarchical amorality at the heart of Wall St. It is the residue of cronyist grift, and I lasted three years, start to finish, from graduation to quitting in disgust lest the ooze reach my desk. I was also terrible at it, because it wasn’t the work I was meant to do at all. I was lying to myself.

My priority was clear, and I’d made it reality, and then that reality crashed into the truth of who I was at heart, and I couldn’t live in it anymore. The wheels were turning, but the rims were crooked, and there were rocks and chunks of concrete all over the tires.  I was chewing up the road without getting anywhere. So I dropped out, and I floundered for a while.

A couple decades later, not too many years ago, I was sitting on the couch feeling angry that I hadn’t created a cushy life of material luxury. I was struggling to get traction in my work, feeling cramped and trapped, while other people seemed to have second homes and vacation plans and cars with fewer than 150,000 miles on them. My frequent-flyer-points-to-odometer ratio felt all wrong.


Over seventeen years ago, I held a tiny baby in my arms. I decided to do that right, and that meant doing it differently. I devoted all of my attention to becoming the best mother I could possibly be, little knowing, at the time, how profoundly that process would change me. In raising children who truly love themselves, whose lives are abundant and rich in their own estimation rather than by outside definition, and who define success on their own terms, I learned what it meant to be healthy and whole.

Sitting on the couch, I looked at my life and was struck: “THIS is what I did. THIS was my priority. I chose it, and I made it a reality.”

That doesn’t mean I didn’t twist, and doubt, and travel in the dark. It doesn’t mean I was patient, and pleasant, and present, all the time. All the other things I didn’t prioritize, well, they didn’t happen. So now, with one child on the cusp of adulthood and the other close behind, I can understand, by looking backwards, how I got here. I aligned my course with my compass and I kept a hand on the tiller, through the frozen sleet and sideways winds, without even knowing I was doing it, because the center of gravity in my life is this:

My life is easy and magical. I am powerful and unconventional, and I live outside the rules.

That, and patience; “slowly, and then fast,” to quote Hemingway.

When the priority didn’t line up with my compass, I didn’t get that feeling, and that’s how I learned to hear that subtle sound. I looked backwards and moved forwards. The finance career I was building was never going to line up with that feeling, so I had to abandon it. Raising my children in the woods did, and so it is satisfying. It was only when I could see which was the easy way, and which the hard, that I could find those words.

Everything you think you want is towards the end of how you want to feel. You already have that information, whether you got it the easy way, or the hard one. Identify it, and the gems of your life will encrust upon that armature.

In the prospectus for an investment portfolio, there is a disclaimer. Past performance is not an indication of future returns.

Except, it is. The components of your portfolio don’t always do what you want them to do, but if your investment objectives are clear, and they line up with who you are at the deepest level, you can trust the process, and surrender.

It’s the easy way.

What’s Your Heading?



I can help. I’d love to offer everything that I’ve learned, and used, on my own healing journey, in service of your process. If you’d like to learn more about my Navigating Your Healing Journey 26 week program of homeopathy-driven growth and self-discovery, and how you can follow these steps to gain greater access to your intuition and process, please click HERE for your FREE Embark on Healing call. Current and recent clients receive 10% off this transformational work. I am offering you the Irresistible Invitation to Surrender. Will you accept it?

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