I Spent a Long, Dreamy Day Resting in a Tiny Village in Portugal and Here’s What I’m Thinking About

When Brenda Porter and I were talking the other day about running another Creative Camino trip next year, I was clear about my position—it was a definite yes! I wanted to do it again.

But I hadn’t been the person who had organized all the logistics, who had sent those hundreds of emails to hoteliers and vendors and transportation companies, who had scouted every detail of the trip and stayed on top of every detail. Who had set it up in 2020, canceled it, set it up again for 2021, canceled it again and finally rebooked everything for the 2023 trip we just ran.

The major factor as to whether we can offer the trip next year has to do with hotel availability. Our group size requires a lot of hotel rooms in nine different small hotels and getting that room availability to line up in small hotels is like threading a very fat thread through a tiny needle. These hotels get booked more than a year ahead of time—yet it hadn’t seemed prudent to book a second trip before we’d even run the first.

But after we talked on our last night together, Brenda wrote to the hotels and we’re awaiting their responses. When the first hotel came back with a yes—narrowing down the dates we’d have to get for all the others—I got excited. I responded with my typical life force energy—even though I sick, it was still there—the primal energy that generally fuels my life: making things happen. It’s a P-U-S-H energy, one that has led me to publish seven books, build a business and a brand, succeed as a creative entrepreneur, and to do just about everything else in my life. That core drive has propelled me through life generating, creating, envisioning, resourcing, manifesting, connecting, teaching, writing, promoting, synthesizing, DOING. To me, it’s not primarily about being busy, though when I overcommit, I often get far too busy; it’s about tapping and shaping deep creativity as a force for communication and change. As such, my doer has both positive and negative attributes. It has enabled me to manifest my life path and gifts. But when it’s interlaced with anxiety, another core part in my wiring, my need to control, a compelling urgency, and a lack of receptivity becomes corrosive to relationships, connection, and presence. Finding the balance has been my core growth edge for decades.

When something is powerful, successful, satisfying, magical, transformation, positive, of course, being who I am, I want to do it again. And I don’t want to wait. I want to make it happen again right away. And then I push for it. I find a way. That’s how I feel about coming back to the Camino. So, when the first hotel said yes, I expressed my hope that we’d get yeses from all of the others.

Brenda’s response was so different than mine it could have come from another planet. She responded to me in a text thread, “I like to go as the way opens.”

That was two days ago, I’ve been sitting with her words ever since. What would it be like to live the next years of my life that way? Or even moving in that direction? To receive, to slow, to drink in life as it comes to me, saying yes to what arises rather than reaching for and generating what is not? I’ve lived a life creating what isn’t there. Brenda’s way necessitates a kind of trust and patience I can barely imagine, a deeper faith in the universe and its unfolding than I’ve ever known.

But her words continue to echo, “I like to go as the way opens.”

Is it too late for me to learn a whole new way to live? Is that level of change really possible? Or are we just wired the way we’re wired…for better or for worse?

Or am I just creating a false dichotomy with these words?

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