Guest Post: Jennifer Bauer Shares How the Beasties (Rattlesnake and Stingray) Help.
As a relatively new coach, I have been calling upon my beasties for guidance and wisdom about my spiritual journey, as well as how to build my practice. Using tools from Sarah Seidelmann’s book The Book of Beasties: Your A-Z Guide To the Enlightening Wisdom of Spirit Animals, here are just two of the many lessons my beasties have taught me. May they be insightful for you as well.
- Know and verbalize your integrity boundaries.
When I first started exploring this practice, I asked the spirit guides of the highest truth and compassion to introduce me to one of my core beasties during a dream. The first one that visited was a rattlesnake. I was certainly not expecting that.
Don’t get me wrong; I have no fear of snakes. I grew up with brothers who had them as pets and they fascinate me. But a poisonous rattlesnake as my spiritual guide? Really?!
So I researched them and here is what resonated with me.
The rattlesnake wants little to do with humans, and would much prefer to slither away than confront. In fact, if the snake is aware you’re approaching, it will rely on its camouflage to silently exit the proximity unseen.
However, if you hear a rattle, it is usually because the snake has been caught off guard. The rattle and hiss is a warning that you are too close and to back away. If you ignore that warning, only then will the snake bite to avoid being stepped on.
Much of my life journey has been learning to set and maintain boundaries with people. This is as much about identifying them within my own integrity, and then giving fair warning to others when they’re getting close to crossing one.
I had been too afraid of hurting someone’s feelings, or what they’ll think of me if I say no, to give that warning. Then, when I allowed a boundary to be crossed, I either suffered in silence (causing psychosomatic health symptoms like throwing out my back for not having my own back) or blew up in anger at an unaware and unsuspecting friend or colleague. Boundaries only work if you let people know where they are.
As the rattlesnake matures, each shedding of a layer of skin gives their rattle another layer. In essence, it gains another boundary warning layer.
As I shed my various limiting beliefs, and feel into what the right decisions and boundaries are for myself, I have become comfortable with speaking up when something doesn’t feel right.
Now, when I see a rattlesnake show up in my Facebook news feed or on a car window decal, I check in with myself and ask, “Am I sharing and maintaining my boundaries in my relationships?”
- Be still, grounded and aware of opportunities as they come.
During a recent morning meditation, I asked my Stingray core beastie to show me how to grow my coaching business.
A Guitarfish ray appeared and as he did, he buried much of his body under the sand until only his eyes protruded. As I watched him, he watched his surroundings and patiently waited. My stingray was perfectly still for a few minutes before a small crab crawled close enough for him to suck it in.
Unlike many other underwater predators, the stingray doesn’t go out and seek food. He stays grounded, still, and acutely aware. He knows what he wants to eat and waits for his meal to come to him. When it does, he simply does what his body is designed to do.
For me, that means staying grounded, still and present. It also means knowing who I am and using my gifts. As long as I’m aware of what is around me, and pay attention to the signs that the universe and nature are sending me, I know that my next client will come. When that happens, I can draw him/her toward me with simply being my authentic self.
After this Guitarfish meditation, I took my dog for a walk around the neighborhood. Lately, I had been seeing and hearing Black Phoebe songbirds serenading me along my walks. They belong to the flycatcher family, which means they sit on a branch and wait for an insect to fly near enough to catch out of the air.
On this particular walk, and to reinforce the stingray lesson, a Black Phoebe caught and swallowed a red dragonfly right in front of me. Ok, I get it!
Because of this practice, I gained two new clients in a matter of a couple weeks, without advertising or social media posting. Simply by letting them come to me.
What lessons have you learned lately from your beasties?
Are you longing to dive deeper? Sarah created a 1.5 hour class just for you to help you deeply connect with a spirit animal who wants to help you find your feel good way in the world.
Jennifer Bauer is a certified life coach and owner of Inversion Coaching. After sixteen years in corporate marketing, Jennifer discovered that her purpose and passion is to help others identify and embrace their unique gifts so that they can create the joyful, fulfilling and impactful lives they were meant to live. Nature and animals have always tugged at Jennifer’s heart and are the frequent subject of her writing and photography. She finds Sarah Seidelmann’s work to be the added guidance she has been seeking to tap into the wisdom of that connection.