projects / work

Holding On to Spiritual Learnings

This last week has been quite trying for my wee spirit. Personally, I had two major projects launch at work (and they did not go well, oh no they didn’t), I’m planning a bridal shower for next weekend, my boyfriend has been in Ohio visiting family for 5 weeks, and we’re waiting on answers to other family news. And in the world around us, somehow the stocks have plummeted; even though I have worked in the mutual fund industry, I found myself wondering if I should move money from a money fund to a bank account. Dear friends were evacuated from Houston and still do not know when they may be allowed to go home.

At this moment, I’m hoping to make sense of some of the lessons that are being taught. Right now it seems they are being taught in the hardest, most visceral ways. And perhaps they are lessons my head and my heart are fighting.

For daily work, I am a Senior Project Manager at an advertising agency where we build websites. Mostly, big cool websites that make me proud and excited. The larger of the sites I launched this last week was wrought with trouble, induced and supported by one rogue lead programmer. It’s been such a long time since I’ve witnessed the kind of chaos this one person was able to inject into the life cycle of this project.

What does this scenario have to do with anyone’s spiritual path, one might ask? Here are my thoughts:

1. My role at work and in life is to help others be happy and succeed, and I firmly believe this and try to live it. (This is part of why I love being a project manager.) Success is generally reached when people work together and play by a similar set of rules, whether those be stated or unstated. And a successful group is fueled by every person willingly participating, following their own free will, but engaging with each other in a respectful way. If someone is in a group refuses to participate and does not follow up on their agreed tasks, though, sometimes you have to allow someone else to fail. This may not be a popular statement, but I strongly believe its an important learning experience for both sides.

2. In life, its best to be really upfront about your what your abilities, gifts, and interests are. This one is kind of a spin off of the last points, but the scenario at work reminds me that each of us needs to speak up if we’ve been given an assignment that’s overwhelming. We’re not alone. Each of us has a team, be that family, friends, church folk or co-workers – each of us has a team that is on the ready to help. And I do believe its in human nature to want to help and see each other succeed. It’s only when ego gets in the way that we start to fear that our human experience needs to be lonely and solitary.

3. Don’t let your ego talk you into believing you might fail. Your spirit is much bigger than your ego, and it is tied to something much bigger and more powerful than whatever your current experience is.

4. Patience and faith are often the tools that will pull you through, even in difficult situations.

What unexpected events have reminded you of important spiritual learnings?