As my youngest son was getting ready to leave a place where he had been living for a year, I shared with him what sounded like a kooky piece of advice.
I said: right before you walk out, make sure to shine the kitchen faucet until it gleams.
I then went on to explain my theory that in order to convey an Essence, details are often our best friends. In this case, he wanted to get his deposit back by conveying the Essences of Cleanliness and Nurturing of the place. The easy detail solution: shine the faucet.
When I lead Retreats, I am big on the Essences of Nurturing, Peace and Beauty. For that reason, I sometimes find myself sounding a bit like a nag. I insist on freshly baked pastries in the mornings, on the food being presented in a beautiful way, and on towels being folded with their rounded edge out ... that sort of thing.
Do people come to my Retreats to see well folded towels? Or course not. Can they subconsciously feel the Ease and Luxury that come from their eyes resting on them? I believe, I really believe that they do. And I also believe that feeling these Essences allows them to be more able to receive my course, and what I have to share with them.
I am pretty certain that when I had my bakery, having the mini Tartes aux Pommes lined up all beautifully made my customers want to take them home. That Nina Simone singing in the background helped them feel the sensuality of the place - and their own. When we decided to vent the ovens out and into the streets, our sales increased overnight. And just as importantly, I believe that the people who only passed by were fed by the scent of warm bread baking - and that it made their hearts sweeter.
All these things are simple. And easy. And quick.
Really, they all follow the Pareto Principle which states that 80% of our results are often achieved with only 20% of our efforts (thank you Tim Ferris)
So today, I invite you to think about what Essence you are wanting to convey in your home, work, relationship, or even clothing. And then, to find the simple, easy and quick details that will give you 80% results for 20% efforts.
I would love to know what you come up with.
"Thank You Laura for sharing, for teaching and spreading loving kindness. "
"I think I love you. You bring good things into my life, or remind me of things I love and know, but have let go of."
"Laura, you are so good for me. I laugh and sniffle and get the shivers when I read your essays. Thanks so much for letting all your wonderfulness run around loose."
"Thank you so much for who you are and what you share with the world. Your mere being transforms lives as it has transformed mine. This particular post did to my heart what water does to parched soil."
"Thank you for your gentle words that are packed full of wisdom. I have been struggling with the concept of what words can do to another person when they are negative words. Your words are the flip side of our word power, and shows how delightfully powerful kind words can be. Thank you."
"Once again Laura Lavigne takes you on an adventure of the heart. She has a way of pulling you right in the car with her. Asking you to consider changing a fear to taking thoughtful action. Whether she's teaching a class, leading a retreat or heading for a happiness sprinkling, Laura will invite you to shed old ways of thinking and be completely authentic. Join in!"
"Essentially pure love.
I enjoy how Laura is kind to herself and to us other humans who dance in and out of each other's lives. "
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You can count on Laura for warmth, humor, charm, and a lift to your day and your heart. She inspires me to be braver than I am, and to love the world out loud. She's a gem, and a generous one at that!"
I write because this is the way I am able to taste life more deeply.