Discovering Clarity to Embrace the Present

My heart is thumping with excitement. I hear the wind whispering in my ear, urging me to take another step. I feel the dusty ground beneath my toes as they inch closer to the cliff’s edge. I look over the vast seas of possibility and light and joy.

A smile creeps across my face. I’ve been waiting for this day for a long while. I’ve been dreaming to fly. I’ve been yearning to feel the spaciousness I see ahead of me. I’ve been craving the freedom from this dusty wasteland of overwhelm.

All I need to do is leap.

The Cliff

But for now, I accept where I am. I surrender to this cliff, feeling bound to it by fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of the spaciousness I so desire.

I dig my toes deeper into the dust, relishing every moment of this in-between state… in between desperation and freedom, overwhelm and spaciousness, this dusty cliff and the beautiful sea below.

I have traveled a long, difficult journey to get here, but it isn’t over yet. In fact, the journey never ends.

For months I’ve struggled with overwhelm, wandering through the desolate desert of frustration, confusion and lack of clarity. I was desperate to find a solution; so I researched the internet, read countless articles, and tested out every time management technique I could get my hands on.

Still, I remained overwhelmed.

I told myself to keep trying, that I just hadn’t found the right system, the right trick to keep me organized.

So when one of our requirements for life coach training was to hire a coach for ourselves to experience what it’s like to be a client, I was excited to get started. I had never hired a coach before, and being in a place of overwhelm, I had forgotten that this was even an option. I thought, “YES! This is my chance to get support, to get accountability, to get clarity on what I need to do to get out of this desolate place. This will be easy peasy. We’ll talk it out, you’ll give me some tips, and I’ll be cured. WooHoo!”

Through my own coach training, I knew digging deeper was part of the process. I knew there might be underlying untrue beliefs holding me back. I knew I was in for an insightful, interesting ride.

But I didn’t really know.

What happened during my three months of coaching felt like a roller coaster ride of enlightenment, fear, crying, laughing, grumbling, and internal hissy fits.

We spent our time carving out a path to my freedom and unpacking all the stories, beliefs, and fears that were stopping me from making the changes in my life that I so desperately craved. What I was left with was a bout of resistance and dreariness… feeling more stuck than I had even started with.

But as soon as I relaxed and let the dust settle, the vision of me standing at the cliff emerged… bringing in a new-found clarity for how to get through the overwhelm as well as an appreciation for the complexities of our lives.

I realized then that all of the researching in the world could have never saved me from my overwhelm.

I realized then that there was sooo much more than just a simple lack of organization creating my overwhelm, and that I had been living in a state of blindness.

I realized then… just how valuable having a coach actually was, and I vowed to never travel alone again.

I’m not yet completely free from overwhelm, but my coach took me gently by the hand and led me to clarity, showing me the way for when I am ready. I went to her seeking freedom, but received so much more.

She gave me love. She gave me confidence and support. She gave me the ability to accept where I am in life; to give myself kindness and compassion; to hear my intuition more clearly; to feel my emotions more fully… understanding that our hearts and bodies always know the truth. She gave me the awareness that everything will always turn out alright in the end.

Here I am, standing within sight of what I’ve been searching for… still so far away, yet so close. My toes digging into the earth, inching ever so slightly closer to the edge. And I’m okay.

Better than okay.

(Edited image by Lucas via Flickr)


  1. Thank you for sharing this from your heart, Kristal. I used to think I was the only woman who experienced ‘overwhelm’ on a regular basis. It actually helps to know that I am not alone. Maybe I am not such a big failure after all. Maybe I am just a frail human like so many other frail humans. And we are all just beautiful messes in the beautiful mess of life.
    Blessing hugs,

    • Gypsy Gina says:

      Thank you Kristal for this article and thank you Teresa for putting into words exactly how I feel about myself! Here is to all of us “beautiful messes” out there.

  2. Kathy O'Gorman says:

    Very beautiful writing. Also very personal and mysterious. It sounds like you were surprised and elated as to where your journey took you. What I notice most is the peace and contentment in your new life. I am happy you are happy!

  3. Denise Brooks says:

    Very heartfelt, and very inspiring. Although I’m at a point in my life where overwhelm is a rare visitor, I work on making it a stranger. Thank you so much for helping make the experience so visual Kristal.

  4. Dianna Short says:

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Being overwhelmed can be debilitating and I can totally relate. You absolutely are not alone and never will be. No matter how frustrating life can be you are a survivor and full of inspiration. Don’t forget all the lives that you touch and provide a wealth of wisdom. My dear, our challenges only strengthen us and you will be Wonder Woman before it is all over.

  5. Melody Fey says:

    Blew me away. And lifted my spirits:-)

  6. Wonderful post, I am glad you experienced this. This is what you did for me – set me free to be me! You did that with your wonderful chats in your course. All the best.

  7. Peter Morgan says:

    What a gifted lady you are. “Creativity guide and inspirationalist” We are all on a journey yet to reach our destination with so much to learn along the way.
    May your path be wide and your footsteps light.

  8. Gillian says:

    Thank you for sharing this, I’m very fortunate to not get overwhelmed too often, and I’m not really sure what you mean by feeling that way, like everything getting on top of you? I onluy feel that when I have loads of housework to do, hate doing it as it takes me away from being creative, then I feel frustrated. Thanks again xx

  9. Kathy Shaull says:

    Thank you. I am in the throws of overwhelm after 5 urgent surgeries in the last 75 days with an additional surgery to remove the tumor causing the problem looming overhead. I, too, recently reached out to another soul to guide me through. I think of it as “setting my tent” in overwhelm. I will not pour a foundation or build my house here. My journey is temporary, and I am moving on. Your story helps me see that I am not alone, and there are brighter days ahead. Again, thank you.

  10. Teresa said it very well. I know I’ve been there! I feel like I live in the state of overwhelm almost constantly!

  11. Kristal,
    You have returned to the universe the clarity and guidance you received! Thank you so much for an invaluable coaching session to set me on a path with actionable next steps. Our session gave me the push I needed to step back and evaluate the bigger picture, and to get started! Abundant success to you and your clients.
    Happy Creating,

  12. Wow! Your wise words blew me away. I am facing the presence of overwhelm now and it’s not an easy thing, as you know. But thanks bunches my kindred spirit. You opened my eyes to a great outcome.

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