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I was recently coaching and the discussion moved into moving on from that which is holding him back. We had shifted direction because we talking about his role within his business and I had sensed for a while that there were some underlying issues that he really wanted to talk about.

We skirted the issue for a while – 2 sessions in fact – but I really encouraged him to show his vulnerability and then he opened up. He was struggling to move on from a bad time in his life, many people clawing at him and holding him back and we talked about a new way – a new road because life is about him and compassion for himself.

I love poetry as a way of finding meaning and we read Mary Oliver’s – The Journey. Sadly she is dead now but this is so powerful. Do read it slowly and feel the strength of the words. Yours is the life to save first and foremost…

The Journey

One day you finally knew

what you had to do, and began,

though the voices around you

kept shouting

their bad advice—

though the whole house

began to tremble

and you felt the old tug

at your ankles.

“Mend my life!”

each voice cried.

But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,

though the wind pried

with its stiff fingers

at the very foundations,

though their melancholy

was terrible.

It was already late

enough, and a wild night,

and the road full of fallen

branches and stones.

But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do—

determined to save

the only life you could save.

By Mary Oliver

Leadership Coaching and Development | Game-changing Behaviours and Impact | Adaptability | Resilience | Non-Executive Director | Chair |

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