I have found that it is not the magnitude of your purpose that will calm your soul. It is the value you believe you are giving at any given moment and the recognition that what you offer is “enough.”
I had left a workshop early to make sure I got through the Friday afternoon security line at the Washington Reagan National airport in time to catch my flight home. I had not been home for more than a day in three weeks. I was looking forward to spending the weekend quietly unpacking, answering my mail and lying around with Karl.
When I got to the gate, people were swarming around the agent. The flight was delayed. This meant anyone who had to make a connection, including me, might need to find another flight or spend the night somewhere other than home.
The closer I got to the desk, the louder the disgruntled passengers were screaming. The adrenalin surged through my blood. If I didn’t make my demands known, I might be stuck in Washington. I am a Platinum frequent flyer. They should be talking to me first. I maneuvered my way toward the front of the crowd. I ignored the complaints knowing I had the right to be pushy.
When I got to the desk, I heard the agent say, “I’m doing my best sir. We have the list. If we can find you a connection, we will.” I threw my ticket on the counter. The agent looked at me. I said, “It must be very difficult helping people when all they want to do is scream at you.” A wave of relief washed over his face as he smiled and then turned back to the irritated man in front of him. My body relaxed as well.
I left the desk and sat away from the crowd so I could read my book. I would either go home that night or first thing in the morning. In the big scheme of things, a few less hours at home didn’t matter. It mattered much less compared to the gift I could give the agent.
When I remembered how good it makes me feel when I help people cope with adversity, I knew what I had to say to the ticket agent. My words connected us both to a sense of peace that allowed us to go with the flow of what life was dishing out at that moment.
When you know that even your smile, a kind word or your willingness to listen is a part of your noble purpose, you will finally know what it feels like to be “in alignment” with yourself and the world around you. You can feel contentment in your restlessness. You can channel your passion so that it is constantly renewed and you won’t burn out. This is the life energy you need to sustain the journey.