The pinwheel denoting my URL refreshment spun continuously yesterday until I finally realized that I was truly out of range of the available WiFi. I had been asked to film something for a television appearance, and the date had conflicted with my trip out of the country, and I could feel myself sliding towards a fearful place of missing out on an exceptionally rare and amazing opportunity. It took me a full ten minutes of fiddling with every techy device in my possession in order to relinquish my efforts to be connected to the outside world. It would have to wait, and waiting could mean losing the gig. I had been on a ship in the middle of the Mediterranean by that time, and the overseas proximity to home had already introduced tension, while the complete loss of internet access had tipped my connectivity-nervousness past strain, into anxiety.
I stepped out onto the balcony and put my hand over my heart to try and steady it using six deep belly-breaths. Once my physiology started to calm a bit, my mind was then able to observe the whole situation from a place of more objectivity rather than acute fear of missing out. From this place, I am usually much more productive, efficient and powerful over what I choose to pursue and undertake. The entertainment world moves incredibly fast, and often, if you are not immediately available when the producers request, the opportunity can be lost completely. This nagging thought kept bumping up against my belly breaths, threatening to burst the bubble of my growing, oxygenated calm. I started to breathe deeper, slower. I started to challenge myself to see how long I could draw each breath into my abdomen. I challenged myself to exhale even slower, even lower. I challenged myself to devote all of my focus to those two tasks. In and out, in and out, over and over, deeper and slower. After several minutes, I realized that my mind was as disconnected from my schedule—from the future and the past—as my phone was from the internet. I was reveling in the pinwheel of my consciousness just spinning, spinning, waiting to refresh...and it felt spacious, deliberate, as if I had gotten on top of my thoughts, rather than at the reactive mercy of my own FOMO. I had opened up room—a blank canvas on which to sort out the situation.
I recalled the details of what I had been asked to do for this job. I thought about the first time I had declared my desire to book an appearance as myself, and not only an acting role; how long I had wanted and asked the universe for the opportunity to speak out on issues dear to my heart; to share things about survival, thrival, life, that I have learned the hard way. Steps I clumsily took to navigate pain, struggle, disappointment, on my way to change, relief, joy, freedom and evolution. I had spent so long silently declaring what I wanted in my life—asking to have the opportunity to do it—that I had locked myself into the recognition that it was not here yet. That constant asking sharpened that recognition of its absence in my life, to focus on the fact on what had NOT come, what I was NOT doing, all that I WASN’T at this point in my life. It felt like I was behind on my chronological life’s plan, it felt like lack, like its absence was indicative of my lack of worthiness to achieve it; that I didn’t deserve it. I felt incomplete, amateurish, awful.
It was in that moment that I remembered the original instigating television offer over which I had been ruminating this entire time. They had asked me to make an appearance. My questioning spirit in which I had spent so much time asking, had finally elicited an answer. I realized that I had asked enough—an opportunity to do what I have wanted to do in this particular area. It was time to transition into preparation mode. The universe, our inner being, our life hears us the first time we ask with unfettered conviction; the first time we close our eyes and feel what it would be like to do the things we most want to do. I have asked, and instead of staying in that loop of asking, of focusing on the fact that it’s not here yet, I switched to understanding that by the very nature of my question, I will pursue what it takes to be able to follow through on that desire...purely because it is of supreme interest to me, purely because I want to do it, be it, follow the excitement of it. By asking, I have already set myself in motion. By asking, I have automatically opened up the answer, and opened up opportunities to be able to do it, be it, have it—whatever it is.
I sat with my hand over my heart, my eyes closed, and my breath deep and steady. I had finally caught up to the speed of my desire. I had finally become truly present. I had finally stepped fully into the most powerful place we all have—our NOW.
I recalled my original desire to speak as myself, to talk about what I have learned from my own personal story, to offer help to those whose desires may resonate with what I have to give. I acknowledged the work I have already done in order to get to where I am in my life—we all have done work, we all have studied, we all have spent time in the school of life hashing out the question of what we want. It was now time to prepare for its delivery. The excitement that I had and continue to have for my craft, the art forms that light me up, have acted as my GPS navigation system on the way to what feels right, to what I am supposed to be doing. And with previously declared desire, the power of the present moment, and the strong guidance of excitement leading me, I started to prepare for the appearance which had not yet been rescheduled. In that meditative moment it made no difference, because I finally understood on a cellular level, that what was meant for me was on its way. Period. Whether it be this particular appearance or another one. There was no such thing, in that moment, of missing out on everything I have so desired. The momentum has garnered far more speed than a single scheduling snafu could ever dissuade.
By the time I had logged in again, I had a message waiting in my inbox, rescheduling the appearance to perfectly fit my schedule. What an honor to fully understand the power of our asking, the power of our preparation, and the power we have to stand in our now and summon the answer—again and again.
Polo REO Tate was born in Lansing, Michigan, where her family has deep ties to the community. Her Great Great Grandfather was Ransom Eli Olds (R.E. Olds), a pioneer and prolific inventor most notably responsible for inventing the first internal combustion automobile—the Oldsmobile. Growing up, [...]