This is a guest blog post written by Julie Chazotte.
Photo by Vinicius Altava on Pexels
One of the many defining moments in my life happened when I was 19 years old. I had just started my first full-time waitressing job, and one of my tables was really upset about something. They had already snapped at me over whatever it was and I had this inclination to pause before I went back to the table.
As I stood there, I felt like I had an important decision to make: was I going to be the type of person who was rude back or was there another way I could be? I knew there would be many moments like this in life and I knew I didn’t want to be a part of creating a world where everyone was rude to each other.
As I stood there, I simply heard, “kill them with kindness”. The feeling that came through was what I imagine people are pointing to when they say, “namaste” meaning “the divine in me sees the divine in you.”
It felt as if the wisdom behind these words is what would guide me, and I found over time that it did.
Over the next eight years I waitressed my way through college and my masters program, and was able to experience the miracles this wisdom created. The thing I noticed more than anything else was that in almost every single case, people’s state of mind seemed to improve when they were met with presence and deep respect.
I continued to see the power this wisdom has as I went on to become a teacher and then a coach, and as we face some really difficult times together on this planet, I wonder if this same power can help us now?
This question reminds me of a dream I had years ago. I was standing outside in the parking lot behind the restaurant I worked in. An angry mob of thousands of people were headed toward me. My aunt, who is a nun, handed me a megaphone. She and I felt peaceful and this feeling of love for the people in the mob came through me.
As they marched toward me, I spoke to them. I don’t know what I said, but the energy behind it was loving. I repeated the same message over and over again in different ways and each time I said it more and more people settled down until everyone stood there in peace.
While I’ve had many lessons occur to me from this dream, the one that stands out to me now is how it wasn’t the words that seemed to matter, it was the energy of love and respect that settled everyone down and brought us together.
While I don’t know the ways in which we will be guided to address the climate crisis, or to heal the inequities and bigotry that ails our society, or how exactly we will make it through this global pandemic, one thing that seems obvious to me is that the healthiest way forward is together.
What if the best way to find togetherness is by looking toward our collective state of mind? I really don’t believe there is anything we can’t face with wisdom when we have deep respect for one another.
The last memory that comes to me to share took place during my third year of teaching. I had learned that my students benefited deeply from loving structure and by having that in place, we were able to create an environment where we could have some really powerful and important conversations.
I asked my students if they wanted to feel safe in our classroom. While I knew deep down they did, I didn’t know how they would respond to my question.
Every single student I had that semester said yes.
From there, we were able to talk about what that actually meant and what that looked like for us. We came up with agreements together, and our conversation was powered by the energy of love and respect we had for one another.
It didn’t matter that the students were teenagers, or that some of them were in gangs, or that they didn’t know me that well and my question probably threw them off. What mattered was that there was this universal love and respect fueling it all.
The wisdom we needed to find our way came from there.
I think this example more than any other is what has me most excited about the power community can have. What is possible for us when our wisdom not only serves us as individuals but brings us together with others? I for one am excited and inspired to find out.
Julie Chazotte is a co-founder of SimpleSHIFT, a forthcoming platform based on the Three Principles understanding, whose mission it is to help people create more health, well-being, and ease across all areas of life and the way we do business.
Additionally, Julie is a transformational coach who guides and supports individuals and businesses in navigating life with greater ease. She points people away from the habits that create stress, pressure and sometimes burnout, and points them toward what naturally allows them to access better quality thinking, creativity and momentum.
With masters degrees in education and in spiritual psychology, Julie brings over 18 years of experience in the field of education and coaching to each person, project and company she works with.
Rohini Ross is co-founder of “The Rewilders.” Listen to her podcast, with her partner Angus Ross, Rewilding Love. They believe too many good relationships fall apart because couples give up thinking their relationship problems can’t be solved. In this season of the Rewilding Love Podcast, Rohini and Angus help a couple on the brink of divorce due to conflict. Angus and Rohini also co-facilitate private couples’ intensives retreat program that rewild relationships back to their natural state of love. Rohini is also the author of the ebook Marriage, and she and Angus are co-founders of The 29-Day Rewilding Experience and The Rewilding Community. You can follow Rohini on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. To learn more about her work and subscribe to her blog visit: TheRewilders.org.