“What part of you has been creating the problems of your life? What are those problems a reflection of?” – Jesse van der Velde
In this episode of The Spiritual Game of Business, Jesse van der Velde explores the nature of how we face discomfort and how moments of discomfort can teach us about our own businesses. Jesse shares his personal story about how a sacred plant medicine sweat lodge transformed his understanding of the spiritual game of business. Join Jesse in exploring:
- What is your reaction when you are in an uncomfortable situation?
- How is your business a reflection of your life?
- What drives your need for success?
- What are you trying to achieve?
In this podcast, Jesse reveals how our own businesses are a reflection of our inner world and, ultimately, a manifestation of our search for inner peace. Join Jesse in exploring what ways your own business is mirroring your inner world.
What does your business reflect about your own life, values, and even unresolved aspirations? Is your business really about making an income, or is there an element of self-discovery innate in the journey of business ownership? In a unique sacred plant medicine ceremony, I had enlightening epiphanies about how we choose to react when facing discomfort, as well as the nature of business and its role as a mirror to our lives. First, how do you face discomfort?
How do you Face Discomfort?
For my 30th birthday, my friend took me to see a shaman of the North American Lakota tribe who has been working with sacred plant medicine for nearly 30 years. This shaman specializes in what are known as sweat lodge ceremonies, which he had learned from the North American Lakota tribe.
Sweat lodge ceremonies involve heating stones in a fire and then sitting with those red hot stones in a pitch-black lodge, sealed with warm blankets. During the ceremony, the shaman pours water over the stones, creating an even more intense and consuming experience.
The experience becomes so uncomfortable that you feel like your skin may boil off and all you want to do is escape from the discomfort. At this moment, there are two choices:
- Escape: You can strive to escape the discomfort, living in anticipation of the moment when you are no longer suffering.
- Surrender: You can accept the discomfort, breathe into it, and surrender to the presence of what is being offered in life.
The sweat lodge ceremony reveals so much about how we respond to discomfort, and thus what is living inside of us. Everything in life is a direct reflection of what lives inside of us. Our business is also a direct reflection of what lives inside of us.
What is Your Motivation?
What motivates you in owning a business? What are you striving for?
Is it a certain income? To experience certain luxuries, such as car ownership or extravagant holidays? Perhaps to have personal recognition, awards, or professional respect? Or maybe you strive to have a positive impact on the world?
The opportunities we chase, how we spend money, and how we choose to spend our time are indicators of something very deep within ourselves. The thing you are trying to achieve in owning a business is something you wish to have; it is something you wish to experience. The thing you are trying to achieve is something that you have not yet experienced within yourself. The very thing you are searching for is a direct reflection of your needs.
At its core, a business is ultimately a vehicle to meet your needs – to meet the needs that you have yet to find in the silence and peace that exists within yourself.
Your Business is a Mirror
Just like a mirror, you receive the energy that you give. If you are closed and untrusting, you will not be able to receive the openness and opportunity that you seek. However, when you decide that you are ready and remain open to possibility, you allow a flow into your life that brings with it opportunity.
That opportunity has always been there; it’s been there for years; it’s been there waiting for you. All you needed to do was say “yes;” to give yourself permission. Oftentimes, this comes down to merely accepting that you are indeed worthy of chasing an opportunity.
Look in the Mirror
Given that you have personally invited the opportunities that have come your way – we can then reflect on any problems you may have in your life or business. Without even realizing it, it is easy to create problems rather than solutions in our life.
As an example: think about your business and the very first time you hired someone. Why did you decide that it was time to hire someone? Perhaps you felt “ready” – it was time to expand your business and invite someone to help it grow.
But – have you ever thought about why you chose the person you hired? Did you choose someone who you believed to be most qualified for the position? Someone that you could trust to be creative and independent? Or is there a part of you that chose someone because you thought they’d allow you to retain control? Someone who you thought would easily do things your way?
The person that you hired is also a reflection of what lives inside of you. In this same way, the business you have built, its success, and any problems you face with it, are all a reflection of what lives inside of you.
What do you see in the Mirror?
When you take a moment of quiet to close your eyes and reflect, what is it that you see in the mirror?
What is it inside you that has invited success? What is it inside you that has subconsciously created problems in your life?
At what points in your business have you tried to escape discomfort? At which points have you surrendered, allowing yourself to breathe into what is being offered to you in life?
What is a situation in your life with which you are unhappy? What is it teaching you? How can you change your perspective of this problem?
An Inner Journey
In this series, we will go on an inner journey together: a path of becoming and of healing the deep wounds we have not been willing to see until this moment. We will connect with the parts of our life we are trying to avoid and make the decision whether to take action or to accept where we presently exist. We will look in the mirror of our lives and businesses to learn more about what is inside of us. Ultimately, our business will only grow at the level at which we are willing to grow. What do you see in your mirror?