Have you ever truly gasped? Like, something so amazing and unexpected took your breath away? It is rare. I’m not sure I ever really gasped until last week.
This is going to take a little background, so hang with me to get to the gasp moment.
It began when I was in Honduras, but has nothing to do with Honduras except for the fact that internet signal was spotty. (I will write more about our Honduras retreat later.) I got an email from a 36 year-old mum with 2 young girls that lives in London. She bought The Holding Space Practice book and is working her way through it. I offer and encourage readers to contact me to get a live person to mentor them through the practice.
In three years that the book has been out there (maybe 200 copies sold), Farzana is the first reader that has been brave enough to reach out and ask for a mentor. I asked her to tell me more of her story. (I will write another blog post about her story.) She wrote, “Your book resonated with me even before opening or reading any of it. There was a very short recommendation on someone’s webpage & the title just grabbed my attention.”
The fact that she had read someone’s recommendation of the HSP grabbed MY attention. I asked her for a link to the recommendation which she kindly provided.
I was in Copan Ruinas, Honduras in a wifi area at Macaw Mountain Bird Sanctuary when I read her story and was able to respond. I was alone at a table after looking at the amazing birds that are cared for at the bird park. I was waiting there while my more adventurous friends went on a cool zipline tour. (photos below) I didn’t have much “alone time” that week, so sitting there alone stands out. And how I felt connected to Farzana as I read her story stands out more!
I went to click on the link that Farzana sent, but my click wouldn’t go through. The link didn’t work for me until the morning after I returned home to the United States.
Here is the link. Maybe you want to click on it yourself before you read on.
I noticed the title even when I couldn’t open the web page. That alone amazed me. The HSP was on anyone’s top 10 list anywhere???
When I got to the webpage and scrolled down and saw the number “1” and then a photo of my book I literally gasped. I was just not expecting it. I sent the link to my husband and told him to click on it and scroll. I was standing by him and HE gasped just like I did as he scrolled down.
What added to my amazement were the other books on the list by really well-known authors I like Tony Robbins, Eckhart Tolle and Viktor Frankl.
This whole experience reminds me of a story. It is the first chapter in the book Aspire! By Kevin Hall. He tells of visiting Austria for the purpose of moving forward a project to build a statue called the “Statue of Responsibility” on the West Coast of the USA as a bookend to the Statue of Liberty on the East Coast. It was a vision that Viktor Frankl had and Kevin was visiting Viktor’s family as a representative for an organization that was carrying out his vision.
Kevin ended up in a mysterious-sounding shop and tells of his conversation with Pravin Cherkoori who was raised as a poor boy in Kalcutta, India. Upon hearing Kevin’s purpose for his visit to Austria, Pravin asks him to sign his large leather guest book called the “Book of Greats” which he kept in his shop. “Viktor, like many other who have passed through Vienna, signed this Book of Greats.” Pravin explains.
“Kevin,” he continues, “you are one of the greats. Will you sign my book?” Kevin sees Dr. Frankl’s signature along with Mother Teresa and members of Mahatma Gandhi’s family. He felt unworthy to sign alongside such distinguished names and told Pravin, “I do not believe I am one of the greats.”
The story continues and Pravin teaches him the Hindi word “genshai” which means to never treat anyone small– including yourself!”
I have used this story in workshops. I once felt inspired to buy a handmade book and didn’t know why until I read Kevin’s story, then I knew, it was meant to be my “guest book” of the great people I meet in my life. It became my own “Book of Greats”. I have asked people that I tell that story to if they would please sign my book. I know some of the greatest people on earth and I have their signature in my book!
Being famous and being great are not synonymous.
The Holding Space Practice is something I wrote hoping to be of service–that people could benefit from the things I have learned. I am so humbled to be considered an author. I’m just a regular person living a regular life. I think all great people feel like that. Like you probably feel too. Nothing spectacular. Just simple. But in honest, straight-forward, simple living lies greatness. This is what Rob wrote:
what I love most about this book…its’ simplicity!
As I went through this book over the course of a couple weeks, and several weeks thereafter, I would constantly catch myself doing The Work in my head when I recognized a thought that wasn’t serving me.
This book really taught me that just the simple act of questioning our thoughts is enough to see through all our made up bull shit.
Who would I recommend this book for?
Seriously…everyone. There is not one single human being on this earth that could not benefit from this book.
I guess the gasp of my experience is that other strangers on this planet can read what I wrote and feel a true change in their heart like I have, and did, and do. A change that, as I say in the book, brings permanent peace. Rob also says,
I will warn you, the exercises are not for the faint of heart, and you must check your ego at the door. If completed, the exercises are life changing, I speak from personal experience.
It is work, but it is not complicated. It is not gaspingly exciting, either. Sometimes it is really hard. But it is simple. I can’t tell you how grateful I am for everyone that has done The Work– their personal work (using my book or any other resource!). In my view, THIS is what makes the world a better place. One simple life at a time. And it is the true measure of greatness. Sigh. Smile.