Read on… You will love this story!
With my Grand Canyon retreat, we hike into the canyon and stay 2 or 3 nights at the bottom in a beautiful cabin surrounded by trees and walls of rock.
This space is called Phantom Ranch. It was designed by one of the very few female American architects in her day, Mary Jane Colter.
At fifty-three years old, Mary Jane was given the assignment to design a small group of rustic stone cabins on the north side of the Colorado River near the mouth of Bright Angel Creek. She called it Phantom Ranch. The ranch was completed in 1922. The rustic cabins and main lodge are built of wood and native stone and fit in with the natural beauty and solitude of the setting.
There are times when, yes, we can actually feel the presence, or ghost, of Mary Jane Colter while in our cabins. You may think this is odd, but I don’t. Not anymore.
I’ve experienced some of the most beautiful moments while in this vast space of the Grand Canyon (I’ll be sharing more of those intimate moments in my daily posts.) And we’ve had wild unexplainable moments in the cabins.
I’ve become friends with most of the people who work at the bottom of the GC, or “ditch” as we like to call it. Yes, Mary Jane has shown up for them, too. From wet footprints guiding the morning cook to the spot where she once hung her apron, to pots clanging in the kitchen, and hanging guitars making tunes.
Don’t believe it?
You don’t have to.
But it’s fun to sit in the magic either way.
And that is where it all begins.
You see when I was at my lowest point in life, I stopped believing. I stopped believing in my abilities. I stopped believing in my sanity. In my own thoughts, emotions, capabilities, choices, and decisions… Shall I go on?
I stopped believing in my life.
Yeah, you may look at me and say, “Her? Are you serious?”
I’m not the same person that I was 10 years ago.
You see when you find out that your entire marriage of 17 years isn’t what you thought, and your entire existence implodes in front of you, trust me… You would stop believing in yourself for a while, too.
Here is the catch, if you will.
IT’S OK TO STOP BELIEVING IN YOURSELF FOR A WHILE.
TAKE WHAT TIME YOU NEED TO MOURN THE LOSS OF WHAT YOU THOUGHT TO BE TRUE.
BUT DO NOT STAY IN THIS SPACE.
At some point, you have to get back up and start rebuilding. What is the alternative? I had a choice to stay knocked down. We all do. But I didn’t like that choice.
So I chose to believe again.
I believed in my breath. I believed in my smile as much as I did in my tears. I believed in my thoughts of the present, not those from the past. I believed in my ideas. I believed in my gifts.
I BELIEVED IN MY OWN MAGIC, AS WELL AS THE MAGIC OF THE WORLD HAPPENING AROUND ME.
Now, at 49 years old, where I once didn’t believe in the magic of Mary Jane Colter at the bottom of the Grand Canyon, I do.
Because if I can show up for myself as I have after living through some of life’s most debilitating traumas, I can understand how her magical self could show up for us in this space, too.
Wanna hear the ways Mary Jane Colter has shown up for us in the canyon? You have to show up for a retreat to learn and experience more!
Now, how does this correlate to this picture of me and 5-men at the Grand Canyon?
In February 2018, I had a last-minute reservation for one night at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. Normally it takes 13 months to get a reservation, so I wanted to fill these 2 days, and fast. And, I wanted to run this one a bit differently.
I wanted to try something I had never done before. I wanted to push myself out of my comfort zone.
I WANTED TO LEAD DIFFERENTLY.
So, I marketed this retreat to ONLY MEN.
It was filled.
And it was one epic retreat!
Leading groups or others whom you have never led before can be intimidating. But how will you grow and rise as a leader otherwise?
In moments of questioning, I did what I would do in any other given situation. I stood my ground, gave directions, believed in my abilities because I’ve believed in them before, focused on what needed to be done, and had an amazing experience as a result.
Look, we’ve all experienced struggles at some point in our life.
Moments of uncertainty happen. AND.. It’s in those moments of uncertainty where feeding our belief in self is most important, regardless of how minute and small that belief is.
One seed will not grow a flower.
It takes nourishment from water, sun, and elements to make that happen.
What you feed grows. Growing your self-belief is in your hands.
Below are five tips to guide you:
- Look for what can be learned during difficult experiences. Turn hard life knocks into beloved life lessons. There are no failures in life if learning is involved.
- Find your tribe-love them hard. You are never alone. Look for, or build, your support team and accept their love. In turn, you are loving yourself.
- Honor your adversity. Be grateful for your difficulties in life as they provide room for growth. You will love, accept, and believe in yourself by doing so.
- Handle difficult times with humility, authenticity, integrity, and honesty. Be true to you. In doing so, your self-esteem and self-love will grow.
- Respect yourself and your emotions. If emotions rise, identify and release them in a healthy way. Go hike, meditate, run, or do yoga. Get back to nature. Take care of you.
Remember, everything in life is a practice. It’s a daily practice of believing in yourself.
Never seek out perfection. Perfection is not real.
When you fall and need a moment, take it.
But don’t stay there.
Get back up, wipe yourself off, and take that next step.
This very life is magical, and I believe in you.
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