Disconnected - 3 Ways to Interpret a Setback

There’s always at least a few ways to look at a particular situation.

Especially when something isn’t going as planned.  

Here’s a really solid example.  You know me, I’m out here working online.  I rely on my laptop, my cell phone, and my internet connection almost 24/7 to move my business forward and to connect to and with my clients.

So imagine what happens when all of my communications connection is lost.  *insert heart-sinking feelings of despair*

I woke up last week on Friday morning, to find that not only did I not have an internet connection, there was no landline phone connection either.  And, to top it off, since both of those were out, we didn’t have our cell phone connection either.  (Just in case you don’t know, we live pretty rural, in the mountains, NNW of Portland, OR.)

Open and honest moment - at first I reveled in it.  I kind of laughed and thought, “hey, a free day off!”  I sat around and read books, cleaned up, fed the animals, and even took a nap.  And then, the guilt set in.

“What if they think I’m avoiding them?”

“What am I missing out on being offline and disconnected?”

“Geez, I can’t even check my bank account.”

“Oh, what’s the weather-nevermind, I can’t look at that either…”

And on, and on.  Until I couldn’t even take it.  The guilt of being disconnected in an unplanned way caught me and dragged the kids and I into town so I could make sure there was nothing catastrophic in my email and on social media.

There’s a couple of lessons here: one is about being more connected to the internet and availability of information than we realize, one is about prioritization of what really matters, and one is about interpreting the serendipitous gifts in our lives.  Let me explain.

Most people look for the obvious answer when unexpected things happen.  That was my first thought - oh, I’ve been working too much, so the Universe has told me to take a day off.  Seems realistic enough, right?  And I could have stopped there.

Except, I’ve been reading a number of books lately on intuition, synchronicity, and non-coincidence.

So I looked at the problem I was having on another level.

OK, I’ve been working too much, and need to reconnect with nature, my kids, and take some time to do things I’ve been putting off at home, because I allow myself to get distracted with all the many things I find online.

So, interestingly, after being in town for a few hours to finish up what I needed to get done for the day, the kids and I went back home…  

Where I found one of my neighbors that I hadn’t connected with in months standing at the end of my driveway.  So we chatted, and another neighbor stopped by to say hi and find out if we were also out of service with the phones.  (Ah-ha, I’ve needed to reconnect with people.)

After I’d been home for a few hours, I decided to walk up to the top of the hill behind my neighbors’ house, just in case I could eek out enough of a signal to check my messages.  While walking in nature, I found, not one, but TWO large, bright blue feathers.  Of course I had just enough of a bar of 3G service where I was on the hilltop to be able to google and find that the meaning of finding blue feathers is about - no joke - communication.  

Very funny, Universe.

However, I had all of this time to evaluate what this outage could mean for and to me.  And, my amazing friend noted that maybe all of this mess was a message in the opposite direction of what I was originally thinking.  Perhaps, I HADN’T been communicating enough.  Or to the right people, or with the right message.

Right now, I am still going back and forth on what the truth is, but there may be some truth to both interpretations. And, the message came through loud and clear, to at least look at what communications I was having in general.   

Though there is a third possibility in the meaning.  What if this is all just a test to see if I am actually going to push through this hard time?  Some would call it a trial, some may say my feet are in the frying pan.  

Regardless, here I am, not letting my lack of communications get the best of me, and still sharing my words with you.  Being resilient.  Not letting an obstacle stop me.

How would YOU interpret this if it happened in your life?

Jessica Hansen