Last night I needed a walk. I hesitated briefly, the clouds were threatening to explode with moisture any moment. But by judging them, I decided I had time to make it to the half way point, to a cabana mid-trail, if it started to rain. The sky boomed electric cracks of thunder, and I felt energy around me everywhere, in the moving sky, the branches swaying in the wind, the birds fluttering toward shelter. It felt so good, so centering, to be part of the energy surrounding me.
I paused at the creek and listened to the water rushing, always therapeutic to my mind, and when the sky cracked once more, this time large splotchy raindrops began to fall. They hit the paved trail, they hit me, and I began to run toward the cabana, making it just as the rain began to fall in sheets. It was beautiful, to sit under the safety of the open cabana and watch the rain pour every direction around me, falling on fields, the trees, into the creek. It only lasted a few minutes and let up again. I had a decision to make, hurry and finish the walk or wait. Gray-blue clouds threatened on the horizon and there was still a good chance of being caught in a storm. Again, I judged the clouds and decided I had just enough time to make it back.
I hurried, but still allowed myself to absorb the new after-rain scents around me. It wasn't a clean ozone clearing smell but dense earthwormy, muddy scents of life surrounding the creek. The smells were completely new, a different experience than just moments earlier, and as I kept a good pace, I couldn't help but correlate this walk with life.
Taking risks in our careers, whatever it is we do, is a lot like venturing out on the walk. Knowing there will be storms but not knowing when or how tough. Yet, still taking the walk because being engaged in life is what invigorates us, keeps us going. And using our intuition - when to go, when to stay, what to pursue, what to leave alone, are all important aspects of guiding our careers.
Intuition. Trusting we have the answers when we need them. I made it home, opened the door - and honestly, this was just as the storm began to beat and hail against the house. I was fine. And even if I'd been caught in the storm, I would have found a way to be okay. But I'm glad I didn't pass up the walk. I came home feeling more alive than ever.