LIFE: Adventure as a Gateway to Growth
My wise friend Leslie Marchand recently gave a TEDx SugarLand (south of Houston, Texas) talk entitled “Disruption as a Gateway to Growth.” She starts with a few points on the idea of disruption, including the definition:
1a: to break apart : RUPTURE
b: to throw into disorder
2: to interrupt the normal course or unity of
When you see those terms, disruption sounds pretty unwelcome. Why would anyone willingly, knowingly, and intentionally invite disorder into their life, which often feels effortlessly chaotic enough.
Leslie points out that natural disasters are disruptions, including Hurricane Harvey which hit Houston in 2017 and caused a major disruption to her family’s farm. Harvey, by the way is tied with 2005’s Hurricane Katrina as the most costly ($125 billion in damage per wikipedia.)
Again, would you invite a hurricane into your life?!
These external disruptions take control and all we can control is our response to them, which is exactly what Leslie’s family is doing with their farm. They are embracing the changes brought on by the disruption…and allowing for growth.
Leslie brilliantly explains that voluntary disruption starts inside as a dream and further discusses why this may actually be a path to growth.
I encourage you to watch Leslie’s talk below. You’ll hear her elaborate on my nutshell version of her formula for internal disruption:
Start with a dream in your heart;
Set a goal to make that dream a reality;
Commit to that dream and those goals;
Go “all in”;
Trust the process;
Allow for growth;
Wait. Watch. See what happens.
With Leslie's encouraging thoughts on “Disruption as a Gateway to Growth,” I realize that I am about to embark on a disruption. I have been disrupting my life since I was 23, when I decided I wanted to move from Michigan to California — San Francisco, specifically, though I had never been and knew exactly zero people there. That move was the first of many cross-country relocation disruptions I’ve taken in my life.
In the 27 years since I moved to San Francisco, I have created a new definition of disruption that makes it a synonym for adventure. Every time I see a fork in the road, I take it.
Amelia Earhart said, “Adventure is worthwhile in itself.” I’d take it a step further and say, “Disruption is worthwhile in itself.”
The Two Sisters Writing and Publishing Adventure.
Elizabeth and I started Two Sisters Writing and Publishing in February 2016, when we both had day jobs. That summer, we quit those jobs (disruption alert!) to focus on our business, which at the time was primarily ghostwriting. That year, I had yet another relocation adventure/disruption: I moved from Nevada to New Mexico, where I still live. (At least for the time being!)
This year we started working with a business coach, Leisa Peterson, who, in 2013 as the friend of a friend gave me some career advice as I transitioned out of a decade in financial services. Our experience with Leisa this year has been revelatory on so many levels. Leisa’s vision led her to create the Atlas Collective: “A community dedicated to improving the world by helping members unearth their fullest potential and soar to new heights financially, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.”
The growth Elizabeth and I and our business have experienced from this group and Leisa has been off the chart. After a retreat with the group last month in Sedona, Elizabeth and I held our first Two Sisters Summit in Santa Fe, New Mexico. We immersed in our business like nobody’s business! Being 1800 miles apart works for the day-to-day, but the creative energy that bubbled up while on a timeout from everything else in life sparked an idea for — yes, you guessed it: disruption!
The adventure begins when I leave my comfortable life in southern New Mexico (5 inches of snow and almost 300 days of sunshine per year) and spend the winter in Michigan (44 inches of snow and almost 300 cloudy days per year) for a business immersion quarter with Elizabeth.
Yes, I’ve gone through Leslie’s checklist: we have the dream, we are committed…and now I am taking action. Trusting in the process and allowing for growth.
(c) 2018 Two Sisters Writing and Publishing