Posted by: clearspaces60 | May 29, 2014

The Power of AND

I believe that if something shows up in your life three times, it is a sign to pay close attention.

Signpost No. 1- I was reading Tina Fey’s autobiography and in it she describes some of the rules of improvisation. I had heard a couple of these before but not being a performer, I really did not pay that close attention. It is the process of Yes, And. Now as a mom and perhaps it works as a wife as well, I am familiar with the power of Yes. Say yes as much as possible, for example, to your toddler you say “Yes, you may have a cookie after lunch”. You are really saying No in a way that won’t provoke a tantrum in either your child or husband. It was the AND that caught my attention here. You say Yes to whatever the other person is saying with And. “Yes you are a raving lunatic AND you want to give me a million dollars, where can I pick up the check?” the possibilities between the characters become unlimited.

Signpost No. 2 – I am talking with a friend, letting her know I received an invitation to a home goods party too late but am familiar with the company and have a couple of things from them. She told me it was a last minute party for another friend but that it had gone very well and that she was able to get both the Seaweed and Bamboo sheets. This statement struck me like a bolt of lightning. Both the Seaweed AND Bamboo. Both!! I told her that I wanted to get one set and could not decide between the two. It had never occurred to me to entertain the idea of even wanting both sets. AND AND AND, it made so much sense. Now these sheets are around $300 for a California King bed so this may sound frivolous or extravagant or just plain nuts. But in the meantime, my best friend, Kaye,  wanted to buy me a set of sheets-no matter how any times I have told her this is not necessary- as a thank you gift for me helping her move and she kept insisting. Since I wanted to get a set anyway AND my best friend wants to buy me a set, I realized how quickly I decide that I do not deserve something and limit myself to a small place of- “I guess I deserve a little bit.”

Signpost No. 3-In my writer’s group, another friend, Elle,  wants to start a blog but cannot decide what it should be about. She feels it has to have a directed focus and since she can’t ever decide what she wants to do or be or even what to order in a restaurant, she often orders the Combination Plate. When Elle said this, Linda, another member of the group and I were visibly having an Ah Ha moment. Perfect name for a blog! Why did Elle think she had to choose one direction? She could write about whatever came to mind. She did not have to limit her many talents, abilities and vast experience to a single topic.

Then I remembered how this Elle had showed me how to use the power of AND in the past. I was working with a team of people and wanted to express my gratitude and appreciation for the time they put in as volunteers and to let them know of a few procedural changes. She was on this team at the time, I knew of her extensive background and experience in business communication and working with teams, so I sent my letter to her to review.

Her response was that I had two documents, a letter and a list of instructions. She pulled them apart, making each one clearer. This was an amazing insight to me even after 30 years of writing and creating business letters, documents, procedures, etc. I had a letter AND a list.

I am finding a lot of power in this little word- AND.  It has expanded my choices, my possibilities and is helping me see the self-imposed limits I am creating in my life.

AND; this short little conjunction can link together unlimited possibilities. I can want both A and B. I can have Surf and Turf. I can possess corporate worker bee skills and be a creative artist. I can be a spiritual being and have unloving thoughts. I can be patient with one person and frustrated with another. I can be organized in one area of my life and a complete mess in another. I can want the Seaweed sheets AND the Bamboo sheets. I can have them too!

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