You probably heard the same message I did as a kid.
"If you work hard, you'll make it."
"You have to work hard in order to make money."
"It's important to work hard."
Well, what if I told you that was not exactly true?
Now, I don't want you to get me confused...I do believe in work, and I don't think you can just make money, while you're sitting on the couch watching TV.
However, I also believe that sometimes you have to PLAY and NOT work, when you want to attract money.
Yes, that's right. Play!
When I first met Phoebe, she was desperately looking for a job. Her energy was super low, almost to the point of depression.
She told me that it had been a year of everyday combing through job listings, writing cover letters, sending resumes, networking and a few interviews that lead nowhere. Her money had run out, and she was despondent.
"I felt like I was doing something wrong or was profoundly flawed as a job candidate."
Instead of focusing on what more she could do to find a job, I knew she needed to shake up her energy. Even if she did find the "right" job, she wouldn't be able to land it, with the energy she had, in this moment.
I'll let her tell you what I asked her next...
"...instead of offering job search advice, she asked me whether I did anything in my life that wasn't outcome-oriented. I thought about it, and admitted that no, everything I did had some sort of outcome connected to it."
So, then I asked Phoebe what she loved to do as a kid that was purely just for fun, she said, "I loved to swing!"
I, then, gave her an assignment.
Go find a nearby park with a swing-set, and I want you to swing at least 5 minutes each day.
"I reluctantly started going to the park and going on the swings. It felt ridiculous at first, but after a few days I started to really find peace on them. I remembered how happy I felt swinging as a little girl, before I'd gotten older and so stressed out about work, success, and achievement."
In our next session, she told me that, at first, she just wanted to go back to her job search and look at listings. In that session, we also did some forgiveness and self-compassion work around a previous toxic work environment.
That week, she got several interviews.
About a month and half after swinging each day, a recruiter called her to interview with a company that totally aligned with her values.
She did five interviews with different people on the team, and everyone was warm, welcoming, respectful, and kind...very different from her past experience of working for a company that didn't value her.
Instead, Phoebe landed her dream job, making the most money she's ever made!
Phoebe is not the only client whom I've given this advice to. It's come up over and over again in the hundreds of clients I've coached.
Most of the time, people are surprised and reluctant, at first, to just "play."
It feels wrong, somehow.
It feels like you're not doing what you "should" be doing -- nose to the grindstone, pounding the pavement, and hustling to find that next job, gig, client or role.
However, sometimes when you feel stuck, blocked, like nothing is working, don't work at looking at job listings, sending your resume and networking. Instead, the best thing you can do is change, create or heal your energy by getting into the energy of play.
The energy of play is also the secret to creating financial flow in the same way as your creative flow. When you're in the energy of play, you are more creative and innovative. When you are more creative and innovative, you attract more opportunities because everyone wants to be around energy that's fun, creative and innovative.
Also, money is a currency, so it's important to go with the flow of the currents. If you hit a rock or find yourself going upstream, it's time to get to shore, stretch your legs, play hacky sack or frisbee and wait until the currents shift, so that you can go with the flow, rather than against it. It will make your journey that much easier.
So, are you committed to playing for at least 5 minutes per day in the next month? Tell me in the comments what is one thing you LOVED to do as a kid, that had no real purpose or outcome. You just loved doing it because it was FUN...
Here's to Play, Love & Gratitude,