Cultivating meaningful lightbulb moments
Stuck in a pattern or challenge? Lightbulb moments help us to see outside of our usual, invisible-to-us boxes. Meaningful lightbulb moments have a personal charge to them and result in change.
Lightbulb moments are closely related to another topic I’ve covered, elevation. They can look and feel like:
- A broader perspective on the possibilities and issues
- Inspiration, freedom of thought and an unleashing of creativity
- An almost physical sense of “hovering” and seeing from a bird’s eye view
- Ideas that connect us to our higher purpose, higher values and higher selves
What they’re not?
- Unintegrated and heady highs (“head in the clouds”) followed by a crash
- Likewise, losing touch with ground level pain points and vulnerabilities, including emotions and needs
- Observing and understanding mentally without being in our experience
- Glossing over, rejecting or denying our own or others’ less enlightened and more animalistic “human parts”
When it comes to steering our lives and businesses wisely, there’s usually a physical element to lightbulb moments. I was on a long flight recently — literally elevated — and had a lightbulb moment that clarified my business mission, a topic of much existential wrangling. It was integrated (past, future, diverse training and experiences), personally meaningful and authentic, even simple. There were no doubts or dangling ends.
If you want to save your carbon offsets there are lots of catalyzing conditions for meaningful lightbulb moments that don’t require flying around the world:
- Elevating conversations, as in coaching
- Time off for rest and reflection if you tend to be overbooked (a sabbatical, a retreat, a long walk, being in nature)
- Exposure to new groups, norms and experiences
- An emotional juggernaut like a huge win or loss, assuming it doesn’t hijack your ego or nervous system
- Solid self care and nervous system self regulation (foundational for any change work)
Meaningful lightbulb moments are expansive and enlightening. They bring us closer to who we are and what we’re here to do. The good news is that while we can’t control them we also don’t have to sit back and wait. By actively cultivating supporting conditions, we can empower ourselves to have them more and more potently every step of the way.
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