When I was going through coach training, Martha Beck – the woman who taught me to coach – did an exercise with us about how to connect with our inner wisdom. She asked us to imagine the person we aspire to be 20 years from now. She posed questions like: What is she doing? Where is she living? What is she like? How is she being? What does she want to tell you?
My future self was a woman who was comfortable in her own skin – a woman who has purpose in her work – who expresses herself openly and confidently in her writing and when she uses her voice. She is wise, happy, and has integrity – she’s a woman who really knows who she is.
And she wants me to know that all of those qualities I aspire to have are already there within me – that they are just buried parts of my true self – qualities that I’ve buried and hidden due to fear, the need to people-please, to be loved, and believing that I’m not good enough.
You may be thinking: Oh, that’s a nice exercise to do, but how does that help me? It only reinforces the gap between where I am now and who I want to become.
But that version of my future self has become my inner guide – my North Star – my higher self – making sure I stay on course when I stray (and I do!). She has been calling me over the years to move in the direction of my best and higher self.
And even though I’m not fully her yet, I have found myself over the years growing into her - always checking in and asking myself: what would she do and say to me when I feel insecure and want to hide out in my work? What would she say to me when I’m overcome with fear of others criticizing me? When would she tell me to lighten up and not take myself so seriously?
Her voice is always one I have come to trust. She knows exactly who I should be – who I would be – if only I could trust and know who I really am at my core.
I have read hundreds of self-help books – I’ve listened to so many well-meaning coaches and guides who tell me how to get unstuck and improve my life. But there is no one who knows me better than my inner guide – my future self.
She’ll give you the support and wisdom that’s right for you. She’s inside of you and always will be.
You know exactly who you want to be – who you would be – if you were brave enough to show up and live as your true self.
Isn't that true?