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Paying Attention to My Quiet

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Paying Attention to My Quiet

By Michelle Yozzo Drake

The first step in following my dreams was to become aware of them. During different times in my life my dreams have focused on different interests and aspects of my life utilizing my tools in different ways.

I still remember my college graduation.

I am the oldest of 5 children, therefore the first to graduate from college. I turned to my father after the ceremony and said,

"I am not qualified to do anything. I am not a teacher, an accountant, a librarian or a doctor...I'm not anything...what does a marketing major do?" At 17 years old I chose to be a business major, specifically marketing/management, because my father told me not to go into education (he was a teacher) and numbers did not interest me so accounting and finance were out.

I never really thought...what will I do when I graduate?

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Hearing his 21 year-old daughter announce that she was qualified for nothing, well to say the least my father was shocked and annoyed. My college education was no small financial sacrifice for my family or myself (can you say student loans?) and I had never really thought about what I would do after graduation...I just thought of getting through classes and having some fun. (and if I'm honest...there was more emphasis on fun)

My Dad wondered--"How could she be trained for nothing?" Later in life, my career relied heavily on the lessons I learned at Siena College while pursuing my business degree.

My aspirations were limited to my experience in life. My parents were teachers so I did not have much exposure to the business world. I knew that I wanted to live in the city (New York, that is) and be independent and successful. I did not give much thought to what my job might be.

At this point...I needed to listen to my quiet, that little voice that whispers (and sometimes shouts) to us... when we pay attention.

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That voice helps give us a direction to explore. It gives us clues at what will make us happy and fulfilled in our life.

We all listen to our quiet in different ways.

My quiet speaks to me at the beach.

I grew up on the water...when I am in times of conflict or adversity...the water brings my life back into focus. My quiet is most inspirational when I am near the water. Today, I begin each day with a meditative walk to 4 beaches in my neighborhood, reflecting on a different aspect of my life at each beach.

I have a client that hears his quiet
when he is working on his car...
another when he is rowing his boat...
still another when she is holding her sleeping child.

When is your best time to listen to your quiet?

This week...
pay attention to what your quiet is telling you!


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I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestioned ability of a man to elevate his life by conscious endeavor. Henry David Thoreau