(*note this is a testimonial by Soul Surfer Client Diane)
I first came across Tim McAuley through the Facebook page of a friend.
I’m not sure exactly what made me sign up for his weekly “Soul Surfer” lessons, but sign up I did, and every so often I’d actually read one or two.
I have been preparing for a 1500-mile hike in the summer of 2013.
I had come to the realization that my mental/spiritual preparation was more important than anything I could do physically, but I was totally at a loss of how to go about it.
The more Saturday Soul Surfer Sessions I opened and read, the more of a change in my perspective I could feel, so I commented to one of them – and lo and behold, there was Tim offering to spend 30 days working with me (little did I realize he was awarding scholarships to folks who commented to his blog).
Filling out his coaching questionnaire was a tad daunting, but I did it, being as honest as I knew how to be – and in his truly blunt, honest style, his response was that he could already tell this was going to take longer than 30 days but we would start out and see where we wound up. At that moment I felt like perhaps the most messed-up soul on Planet Earth! I decided to begin reading his book (I think in the first week I had it, I read it through cover to cover twice), watching his YouTube videos, and reading more of his blogs – more, I think, to figure out just what in the world I was getting myself into!
Then we dug in – and I say ‘we’ because Tim was there every step of the way, offering suggestions, fine tuning, encouraging me when I thought I couldn’t continue, kicking my butt when I didn’t want to continue, always keeping it real, and always with genuine love and compassion. He truly has a gift for seeing what’s inside a person, even when we can’t see it ourselves.
The epiphanies came, sometimes rapid fire, sometimes more slowly; painful at times, but always exactly what I needed when I needed it. Through the practice of stillness, I learned to listen to that still, small voice inside of me that had been drowning in the chatter in my head. Through journaling my gratitude list, I developed an attitude of thankfulness. At the end of the day, writing out an honest look at how I did, I saw it was OK to give myself a pat on the back.
The past 30 days have been amazing!
I’ve learned to make myself a priority, not in a narcissistic way, but in a loving, caring manner. I’ve learned to say no a bit more to the demands and requests of others. I can see possibilities for my life that didn’t seem to be there a month ago. I’ve learned to like who I am just a bit more, and I’m hopeful that in time, I’ll honestly be able to say I LOVE who I am!
What I was looking for 30 days ago was a lighthouse to shine a light and help me find my way home. Tim was that lighthouse.
In the ensuing week, I’ve learned that that beacon of light has always been within my own soul, and if I continue to watch for it, to really listen to it, I’ll always be right where I need to be – at home in myself.
Tim has been a phenomenal teacher, an amazing guru, and now someone I am very blessed to call my friend. It is no coincidence that this part of my journey ends today – September 2, 2012. I will be leaving 9 months from today to make the trip, on foot, to Washington, DC. I look forward to this ‘gestational period’ in my life – to seeing what I give birth to – always with a heart full of gratitude that my path took me to Tim McAuley and then back home to me!
Grateful Soul Surfer Client Diane