This ⬆︎ is the card I drew from an Angel Card deck in Bali three visits ago after a crystal bowl sound healing session.
*Bali, Angel Cards, Crystal Bowls . . . Could I possibly shove any more granola-hippy clichés into one sentence?*
BUT (guilty, counter-cliché time), instead of returning the card to the deck, it went in my pocket, and I accidentally took it home. For the next two years, this absconded card has been used as a bookmark, tucked in drawers, lost under the bed, and almost trashed–all the while, popping up again and again at the oddest intervals, taunting me, reminding me that I was depriving someone else of the opportunity to pull this card. Or, perhaps, reminding me that I haven’t contemplated Opportunity fully. After a few years of this little bugger stalking me, I finally returned it to its rightful home on my third trip to Bali.
Initially, I thought the card was beckoning me to keep my eyes peeled for what opportunities, subtle or obvious, were presenting themselves to me. Or maybe it was encouraging me to be more assertive and proactively create my own opportunities versus passively accepting ones that just fell in my lap.
But a simple gratitude practice today revealed a reinterpretation of Opportunity that resounded strongly for me with some self-inquiry:
- What opportunities am I creating for OTHERS?
- Am I creating pathways for others to flourish?
- When I am teaching, am I being too heavy handed? Am I talking so much that I am depriving my students of the opportunity to have their OWN experiences on the yoga mat?
Decades of Opportunity Memories flooded through my brain and heart. I especially remember one of my earliest teachers Sue Elkind. After my first Teacher Training in 2002, a primetime slot opened up on the City Yoga schedule. She wanted to see if I had the chops to handle a 90-minute class, so I taught an “audition class” for her and my peers.
The class went so horribly wrong that my ears still turn red when I write about it all these years later. She called me into her office afterwards. I couldn’t even make eye contact.
And then she offered me my very first teaching job.
When she saw my shock, she simply said: “There is room for improvement, but I see your potential.”
Pay opportunity forward. Penetrate the surface to see potential. Give someone a chance, or a second chance, to flourish. It could change the course of a life.
And don’t steal Angel Cards.